Will Hodgman

Premier of Tasmania

13 September 2017

Jeremy Rockliff, Minister for Primary Industries and Water

REISSUED: Labor votes in support of Okehampton Bay salmon farming

The Labor Party has today agreed they "unequivocally" support the Okehampton Bay fish farm.

Getting there wasn't easy - we had to drag them kicking and screaming, and it was only after we forced a vote on the issue in Parliament today that they reluctantly agreed.

This is because they have been running around the State trying to walk both sides of Okehampton Bay, telling the AWU they support it, but telling opponents of the fish farm that they don't.

Not that voting for today's motion changes the fact everyone knows Labor are soft on salmon, and that Ms White would sell the industry out in a heartbeat if it meant keeping the Greens happy in order to form another Labor-Green minority government.

The motion reads:

(1)          Recognises the vital contribution the salmon industry makes to Tasmania including supporting over 5000 jobs, mainly in regional and remote areas of the state; Notes, the Hodgman Liberal Government continues to back our local high-quality producers who are building our reputation for fine foods;

(2)          Acknowledges that the Okehampton Bay salmon farming development was a pre-existing lease which has undergone significant environmental scrutiny, including via this Government’s instigation of an independent assessment by the Marine Farm Planning Review Panel; and more recently through the Federal Government’s Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act approval process – the highest tick in the land;

(3)          Notes the development is progressing, fish are in the water and people are being employed on the East Coast as a result;

(4)          Acknowledges the positive contribution these new jobs are having on the families and broader community of the East Coast;

(5)          Notes the State Government’s policy position to ban fin fish farms on the East Coast beyond the existing Okehampton Bay lease; and

(6)          Unequivocally supports the Okehampton Bay fish farm.

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