The Tasmanian Forest Contractors Association and the Australian Forest Contractors Association have, over the last few weeks been involved in virtually continuous discussions with the Commonwealth and State Governments as part of the consultation process to design an exit assistance program for Tasmanian public native forest contractors.
The $45 million program, derived from the Intergovernmental Agreement on Forestry, will assist the majority of harvest haul and silviculture contractors, directly impacted by the current resizing of the public native forest to re-structure from those activities.
“This is a program that will assist the overwhelming majority of directly impacted businesses” AFCA director, Ken Padgett said. “We are as happy as we can be, not forgetting what is happening in our industry and most importantly to the people within it.”
“The discussions have been exhaustive, but we are pleased that they are complete and contractors will very soon be able to apply for the sorely needed assistance.” according to TFCA CEO Ed Vincent.
“Within the constraints of the existing legislative and regulatory framework and the terms of the IGA, it was quite challenging to develop an appropriate program” Mr Vincent said.
“The key outcomes contractors demanded have been incorporated. Priority to contractors whose contracts no longer are operable, assessment against volume and a cap which recognises the very large capital investment that contractors have in their businesses, were all critical issues for our members. I think that these have been delivered in this program”
“Our strong advice is that contractors engage professional accounting advice in completing the application forms. The TFCA office can also assist members in the application process.”
Ed Vincent, CEO TFCA M: 0417 520 591
Ken Padgett, Director AFCA M: 0418 130 112