Defence land buy-up opposed by Qld farming families

Beef Central, 06/12/2016

THE Department of Defence’s proposal to buy up of significant tracts of grazing land for military training areas had upset farming families in central and north Queensland, state farm organisation AgForce said today.

AgForce General President Grant Maudsley called on the Federal Government to ensure all alternatives were exhausted before they locked up agricultural land for military exercise use.

“Both the Federal and State Governments constantly talk about growing agriculture as part of their northern development agenda, but then make decisions that take away opportunities for farmers to develop their businesses,” he said.

“The properties affected run tens of thousands of head of cattle, with the landholders investing significant amounts of money back into their local communities so if these families go, it would have a huge economic impact on towns like Charters Towers, Marlborough and Rockhampton.

“There might be legal rights to take over someone’s farm, but governments can’t ignore how people feel about their country. This is their life, their love and their livelihood and they deserve better treatment than what they have received to date,” Mr Maudsley said.

AgForce has been contacting affected landholders over recent weeks and organising information sessions to assist those affected consider their legal, valuation and financial options.

“We ask the Federal Government to take the community into its confidence and share with stakeholders the options they investigated before arriving at these acquisitions as the preferred strategy,” he said.

“We expect the Government to do more than what the letter of the law prescribes. Sit down, talk to farmers and affected communities and look for alternative solutions before taking away farms that have been in the same family for generations.

“Agricultural land is a land bank for all other land uses – they’re not making any more of it – so we have a duty to protect it,” Mr Maudsley said.


Source: AgForce


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  1. Frank Beveridge, 13/12/2016

    There are clearly far better options on the table. Yes, these properties are easily accessible to the military, but there will be long term detrimental effects on every aspect of the beef industry and business’s relying on it. This is from the meatworks, live cattle export, shops in the region to the schools where their children go. When you through a stone in the water, the ripples travel to the edge.

  2. John Stibbs, 08/12/2016

    Under no circumstances should this land or any other productive land of this nature be resumed for non agricultural purposes.Go out futher and find unproductive land or your (gov) own land.And remember this is for the best part for Singapore .Now Singapore compares better (area wise) with Magnetic Island than eg Tasmania Makes we wonder what Singapore are up too,they are a Globally minded Government,are they going do the same with solders as they do for any other product they handle .

  3. Graham johns, 08/12/2016

    The same thing happened in South Australia a couple of years ago. The defence force took over several of the best drought proof sheep properties in the state around Whyalla. I can’t understand why they don’t utilise desert country that is currently in utilised, this is more typical of the country that the forces are currently fighting in and will stimulate the economy in remote parts of the country.

  4. Garry Core, 07/12/2016

    The area west of Townsville is some of the best breeder country in Qld on a cost of production basis. Hard to understand when you read where thousands of hectares of national parks in Cape York have been burnt out by fire because there are no people left. Why can’t the defence department use their own land “National Parks”

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