Red­man hits at PGA chief

Pilbara News - - News - Brad Thomp­son

Lands Minister Terry Red­man has vented his frus­tra­tion over failed ef­forts to re­write laws cov­er­ing eco­nomic ac­tiv­ity on mil­lions of hectares of the State in a leaked let­ter to Pas­toral­ists and Gra­ziers As­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent Tony Seabrook.

The let­ter is set to in­flame the in­creas­ingly per­sonal war of words between Mr Red­man and Mr Seabrook over shelved changes to the Land Ad­min­is­tra­tion Act.

In the let­ter, Mr Red­man ac­cuses Mr Seabrook of fail­ing his mem­bers and mis­rep­re­sent­ing the pow­ers of the Pas­toral Lands Board, a statu­tory body that would have been scrapped un­der his pro­posed re­forms.

“Your mis­rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the PLB as a rep­re­sen­ta­tive body with the power to pro­tect in­di­vid­ual pas­toral­ists has been the hall­mark of PGA’s lob­by­ing and me­dia com­men­tary,” he said.

“By en­sur­ing the PLB is re­tained, you have failed in your stated pur­pose of pro­tect­ing pas­toral­ists from an un­sym­pa­thetic minister (in the future). Pas­toral­ists now re­main vul­ner­a­ble to a minister who can ap­point mem­bers of the PLB with no pas­toral ex­pe­ri­ence and who can do his or her bid­ding with­out ref­er­ence to in­dus­try.”

Mr Red­man al­leges Mr Seabrook made pub­lic com­ments at odds with what he said in their pri­vate meet­ings on the is­sue.

“You have told me per­son­ally that if I re­tained the PLB the re­form would be suit­able to the PGA. This is in con­trast to your pub­lic state­ments to the me­dia that the Land Ad­min­is­tra­tion Amend­ment Bill 2016 is ‘a dan­ger­ous and badly formed piece of leg­is­la­tion’,” he said.

Mr Seabrook said there was a “small el­e­ment of truth” in the claim but it re­lated to ne­go­ti­a­tions that took place be­fore Mr Red­man added lay­ers of com­plex­ity that turned his pro­pos­als into a po­ten­tial dis­as­ter for the in­dus­try.

Mr Red­man has con­ceded that he could not get his re­form pack­age on the Cab­i­net agenda.

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