Greens Leader and Member for Bass Kim Booth MP today called on the Liberal Government to do all that is appropriate to secure a speedy and successful resolution to the most recent freight shipping crisis to plague Flinders Island.
“It is well documented that Flinders Island primary producers have had on-again-off-again problems with shipping services to and from the Island,” Mr Booth said.
“The Greens strongly urge Minister Hidding to do all in his power to resolve the issue, or at least establish a contingency plan to ensure no loss of service once Furneaux cease operations at Lady Barron at the end of this month.”
“The Greens’ recognise that these are not simple challenges to resolve given the commercial nature of the latest conflict. However, the last thing the Flinders Island community needs is a disruption to shipping services that could detrimentally affect their livelihoods and the future economy of the Island. ”
“The community will be watching closely how the Liberals fare and whether they deliver on their previous voiced concerns over this issue.”
“The local community must have shipping access, and if a vessel needs to be provided by the government as an interim contingency measure until a long-term solution is found, then that needs to happen,” Mr Booth said.
Text of Motion tabled by Kim Booth MP in House of Assembly this morning:
That the House notes:
With concern the dispute between TasPorts and Bridport-based Furneaux Freight and the announcement yesterday that the shipping company will no longer conduct wharf activities at Lady Barron on Flinders Island;
With grave concern that the Company has terminated their Stevedore Licence Agreement and will discontinue operations at Lady Barron on the 28th of September this year;
That the current service is capable of carrying 300 tonnes of freight, including livestock, has the capacity to ferry up to 12 passengers and has been commuting to and from the Island on a weekly basis;
That the Flinders Island community are in dire need of a regular, reliable and quality transport and freight service;
With regret the ongoing shipping and freight issues that have plagued Flinders Island over the past few years and continue to do so, it would seem, despite the change to a Liberal majority government;
Further, the ongoing interest and concern in the Flinders Island Shipping debacle over previous terms of government by Liberal Members of the House; and
Further, that this House calls on the Liberal government to prioritise doing all that is appropriate to secure reliable freight services will continue to and from Lady Barron post the 28th of September 2014.