Tim­ber com­pany pledges 100 jobs

Mercury (Hobart) - - NEWSFRONT - EMILY BAKER

A WEST Aus­tralian com­pany has fore­cast its pro­posed tim­ber ve­neer mill for the North­ern in­dus­trial precinct at Bell Bay could bring up to 100 jobs.

Pa­tri­arch and Sons has lodged an ap­pli­ca­tion with the En­vi­ron­ment Pro­tec­tion Au­thor­ity for a ro­tary peel ve­neer mill and ply­wood mill within the Bell Bay in­dus­trial zone.

If the devel­op­ment passes the EPA and the Ge­orge Town Coun­cil, the com­pany would be a com­peti­tor to Ta Ann, which op­er­ates the state’s two ex­ist­ing ro­tary ve­neer mills.

Ge­orge Town Mayor Brid­get Archer said meet­ings with Pa­tri­arch and Sons sig­nalled good news for her re­gion.

Her un­der­stand­ing of the project was that tim­ber prod­ucts would be ex­ported to Malaysia with be­tween 80 and 100 full-time equiv­a­lent jobs to be of­fered to lo­cals.

“They’re in­ter­ested in so­cio-eco­nomic ben­e­fits for the re­gion,” Cr Archer said.

“From what I un­der­stand they’re look­ing to get mov­ing on it pretty quickly.”

An En­vi­ron­ment Pro­tec­tion Au­thor­ity spokes­woman said Pa­tri­arch and Sons lodged a no­tice of in­tent with the reg­u­la­tor in Au­gust this year and was is­sued an en­vi­ron­men­tal ef­fects re­port in Septem­ber.

“The EPA is cur­rently pre­par­ing com­ments on the draft EER which it re­ceived in Oc­to­ber 2018,” the spokes­woman said.

“Once the EER is ad­e­quate, and a devel­op­ment ap­pli­ca­tion has been re­ferred to the EPA, the ap­pli­ca­tion will be as­sessed by the EPA board fol­low­ing the two-week pe­riod of pub­lic ad­ver­tis­ing.”

Pa­tri­arch and Sons staff were con­tacted for com­ment yes­ter­day but did not re­spond.

It is un­clear whether the mill will use plan­ta­tion or na­tive tim­ber.

The pro­posed site is listed on­line as sell­ing for about $4 mil­lion in June this year.

Pa­tri­arch and Sons was reg­is­tered in May this year and its ABN was up­dated in Septem­ber.

A staffer for Richard Col­beck con­firmed the Tas­ma­nian Lib­eral sen­a­tor was aware of the pro­posal but did not an­swer whether the com­pany would be el­i­gi­ble for any Com­mon­wealth sub­si­dies.

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