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The Courier Wednesday, February 10, 2016 -- PAGE 7
By Rhody Gleeson
Alexandrina Councillors have
asked the National Resources
Management (NRM) Board
to justify plans to increase its
levy by more than 135% while
simultaneously reducing its work
The council argues it shouldn t be
forced to collect the Board s levy with
the average annual cost to ratepayers
set to more than double from $36 to
The Board claims in its draft 2016-19
Business and Operational Plan it was
forced to raise levies due to a State
Government s decision for regional
NRM Boards to partially recoup the
cost of government water planning and
Funds raised by the levy have been
used for projects including the $120m
Lower Lakes Pipelines which delivered
drinking water to Langhorne Creek
and Hindmarsh Island as well as
various conservation and environment
management schemes along the
Alexandrina Mayor Keith Parkes
said the council was concerned at the
increase and doesn t believe it should
collect a levy it does not control.
"Works are being cut back 9% yet fees
are increasing," he said.
"Ratepayers are going to see this
increase and get angry with the council
but we don t even see any of the money
we are forced to collect.
"I don t see why the NRM s levy
couldn t be collected alongside the
Emergency Services Levy."
Natural Resources SAMDB manager
of planning and evaluation Amy
Goodman said collecting the levy
through other means would only
further increase the cost to ratepayers.
"The most cost effective way to
collect funds is through an existing
mechanism -- council rate -- and this is
how most of the NRM levy is collected
across the State," she said.
"The Board has determined to base its
regional NRM Levy on capital value as
this is the preferred option supported
by the community.
"Moving away from this to another
system will ultimately cost all NRM
levy contributors more."
Alexandrina ratepayers are already
the largest contributors to the Division
1 Regional NRM Levy and the latest
increase will see residents collectively
pay out an additional $801,421 each
year with the NRM Board set to collect
a total of $1,329,994 from the region in
LEVY TO RISE
BY 135% BUT
Massive cost rise
for less work
Breeders delighted with boom in beef
By Elisa Rose
Judy McKinnon, the stud master of the
Clanfingon Red Angus stud at Mt Torrens,
barely had time to enjoy a cup of tea on
Sunday during their highly successful
participation in the SA Beef Field Days.
This year s Beef Field Days got off to a
promising start on the opening day, as Ms
McKinnon and other stud owners across the
Hills and Fleurieu region showcased their
Ms McKinnon, who participated in her first
field days since 2004, saw a "steady stream" of
people arrive at her property and sold all the
animals she had on offer before lunch.
"... There s a lot of optimism out there," she
"Apparently cattle prices are going to go even
higher which is amazing but about time."
The SA Beef Field Days typically see hundreds
of cattle breeders attend studs across the State
as they look to buy prime stud bulls to improve
the quality of their cattle, and this year was no
SA Beef Cattle Breeders Association president
Jean Evans said the success of the event was
widespread across the region, with the outlook
looking "brighter" than last year.
"I think the whole mood within the beef
industry is happier than last year," she said.
"A good 50% of the studs we visited on Sunday
had cleared their bulls or only had one or two
Ms Evans said the higher cattle prices had
contributed to the success of the field days
despite many parts of the State struggling with
low rainfall last year.
Sky the limit
"Higher cattle prices over the last 14 months
have probably encouraged some people to get a
younger bull," she said.
"If we d had good rains, the sky might have
been the limit."
"The general feeling around the studs on
Sunday was that there was an improvement
in their sales and there was definitely good
quality on offer."
The 2016 Beef Field Days continued across
SA this week, wrapping up in the Mid-North of
the State today.
Judy McKinnon, the stud master of the Clanfingon Red Angus stud at Mt Torrens, with one of her
breeders Clanfingon Warratah, led by Duane Wilson.
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