Steven talks about the fishing rules, the review of SA Mining Laws, Voluntary Euthanasia, and Federation Park roundabout:
The changes to recreational fishing rules announced on 2 November by the State Government have understandably sparked concerns, particularly from local tourism operators.
Upon hearing the announcement, I spoke to the Minister for Fisheries (and Tourism), Hon. Leon Bignell MP, seeking a briefing opportunity for all MPs, and these occurred. I believe any perception that you cannot fish for whiting, even for a month (from 1st May), can lead people to decide not to visit the region – and was part of the reason why I asked Minister Bignell months ago to undertake an economic impact study BEFORE making any decisions. Sadly, this was not done.
The changes to fishing limits for 26 species come into effect from 1 December 2016 and whilst Minister Bignell has pushed the need for these changes to ensure sustainability, the spatial closure zone across southern Yorke Peninsula is very different to that outlined during consultation sessions earlier this year. For a full list of the changes visit www.pir.sa.gov.au
I have also recently met with Telstra management to discuss various telecommunication problems, including issues caused by the recent storm event and flooding. It has been a stressful time for many, particularly growers in the Virginia area; the Recovery Hotline 1800 302 787 is still open, as is the Northern Adelaide Flood Plains Recovery Centre on Old Port Wakefield Road at Virginia.
Minister for Minerals Resources and Energy, the Hon. Tom Koutsantonis MP recently announced a review of South Australian Mining laws, with discussion papers expected to be released in November. The announced consultation time frames for this review are of concern, given it coincides with harvest periods and makes it difficult for our farming sector to fully participate in this important review process. I, and others, have contacted the Minister requesting an extension of the timeframes for the formal consultation period.
Voluntary Euthanasia has been the topic I have been most contacted about since my last column. Debate on a Private Members Bill by the member for Ashford the Hon. Steph Key MP was adjourned, and will not continue, as a new Private Members Bill (title Death with Dignity Bill) was introduced by the Member for Morphett, Dr. Duncan McFetridge MP. Future debate will be occurring before Parliament rises in early December.
On 19 October I was pleased to host Mayors and CEO’s from the region’s councils (Copper Coast, Yorke Peninsula, Barunga West and Wakefield) at Parliament House to meet with the Minister for Transport & Infrastructure, the Hon. Stephen Mullighan MP, about the design of the proposed Federation Park roundabout. The case was put for an additional slip lane for better traffic flow, and we await advice on the outcome of this request.
In Grants news, National Youth Week Grants have been announced, offering up to $4,000 for councils, agencies and organisations to host an event or activity during Youth Week; and also open are the new Female Facilities Program, the 2016 Community Voice Program, and the Sport and Recreation Development and Inclusion Program.
For more information on all these programs, and for advice on any State matter, please contact staff at the Goyder Electorate office.