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Labor creates a $20 million forestry black-hole

Labor and part-time Forestry Minister Burke must today explain the black-hole it has created in its own budget following the panic release of $20 million in funding to match a Coalition forest contractors commitment.

“Where did the $20 million magically come from?” said Coalition Spokesperson for Forestry Senator Richard Colbeck.

“Which programs has Labor cut to pay for its last minute $20 million panic policy?

“Two days ago Labor, showing complete disinterest in the future of the forestry sector, issued a ‘statement’ on forestry that was supposed to be its policy.

“The forestry ‘statement’, barely half a page long, contained no costings and certainly no reference to a $20 million fund for forest contractors.

“Today’s panic move by Labor is not about the future of the forestry industry or forestry workers, it is about saving its own skin.

“I do however welcome the belated commitment by Labor as it means greater certainty for forest contractors. It just remains questionable where Labor will grab this money from elsewhere in the budget.”