New hunting rules show favouritism

It seems to me that when National Party politicians get into government the very people they seem to hurt most are the country folk who voted them in (Deputy Premier Peter Ryan's letter 21/12/12).

The Department of Primary Industries (DPI) July 2012 Regulatory Impact Statement on the proposed new game hunting regulations, makes it abundantly clear that taxpayers these days are footing the vast majority of expenses for hunters in Victoria. This is not only favouritism, but is unfair as other important regional essential services are forced to make drastic cutbacks. It is time for the Auditor-General to investigate.

For example, the firefighting budget is cut by $65 million as Victoria goes into a potential dangerous fire season and the DPI is in the process of sacking hundreds of staff and closing regional offices, hurting the very farmers they are supposed to assist.

Recreational duck shooting may have generated money for country towns some 25 years ago, but those days have long gone.

If the Minister for Regional Development really wanted to help country Victorians, he would establish a thriving wetlands tourism industry in regional Victoria.

It's a pity the Deputy Premier isn't as passionate about spending taxpayers' money on protecting country Victorians from the ravages of the fire season as he is about propping up a dying activity . 

LAURIE LEVY

Coalition Against Duck Shooting

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