Sta­tions seek road­works

Pilbara News - - News - Sophia Con­stan­tine

Pil­bara pas­toral­ists hope WA’s new Agri­cul­ture Min­is­ter Alan­nah MacTier­nan will con­tinue to sup­port the cat­tle in­dus­try, with one sta­tion owner say­ing he will lobby for an up­grade to roads he says have not been graded for the past five years.

Wal­la­reena Sta­tion owner and man­ager Zane Day said he hoped con­sid­er­a­tion would be given to im­prov­ing roads in the De Grey area, say­ing the con­di­tion of the Pip­pin­garra and Indee roads were detri­men­tal to the cat­tle’s well­be­ing.

Mr Day said it was not un­com­mon for cat­tle that spent a lot of time trav­el­ling to lose a large amount of body weight through stress.

“The roads are our main con­cern,” he said. “We can’t get our pro­duce out be­cause the roads are locked in.

“If you get in and do it prop­erly the first time, it saves you money in the long run.”

Yar­rie Sta­tion owner Annabelle Cop­pin said she sup­ported Ms MacTier­nan’s plan to re­fo­cus ef­forts on re­search and de­vel­op­ment and wel­comed an ex­ten­sive pro­gram for the north­ern beef in­dus­try. She also said keep­ing Roy­al­ties for Re­gions alive in ru­ral WA should be a top pri­or­ity.

“Some of the large ex­cit­ing pro­grams, like North­ern Beef Fu­tures, that have al­ready been rolled out could be over­hauled for ef­fi­ciency and im­pact in the north­ern in­dus­try,” she said.

Ms Cop­pin also wanted con­tin­ued sup­port of sup­ply chain de­vel­op­ment for the live and do­mes­tic mar­kets, with a fo­cus on ship­ping live ex­ports from Port Hed­land again and con­tin­ual mar­ket sup­port from gov­ern­ment for the live trade.

“The Gov­ern­ment de­part­ments, par­tic­u­larly in the De­part­ment of Lands, need a to­tal over­haul in terms of their process to al­low re­spon­si­ble and in­no­va­tive de­vel­op­ment of the north,” she said.

“This in­cludes any­thing from large ir­ri­ga­tion de­vel­op­ment right down to very small but sig­nif­i­cant changes on tra­di­tional fam­ily sta­tions.

“Any­thing to do with change in this de­part­ment seems to have no of­fi­cial process, which is mak­ing it very frus­trat­ing and in many cases dis­tress­ing for many on north­ern cat­tle prop­er­ties.”

Kim­ber­ley Pil­bara Cat­tle­men’s As­so­ci­a­tion chair­man David Stoate hoped the min­is­ter’s knowl­edge of the sec­tor would pro­mote growth.

He said the KPCA was con­cerned about land ten­ure and red tape over di­ver­si­fi­ca­tion per­mits, which were out­side of the agri­cul­ture port­fo­lio.

He said the Gov­ern­ment should fo­cus on buyer se­cu­rity and get­ting the best value.

Pic­ture: Michael Wil­son

El­lody Caunt gets the cat­tle mov­ing at sun­rise on the sec­ond day of a mas­sive cat­tle drive from Bidgemia Sta­tion to Mooloo Downs.

Pic­ture: James Pur­till

Wal­la­reenya pas­toral­ist Zane Day.

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