FEARFUL: Stephen Bennett and farmer Brad Newton have expressed fears about Labor's plans for the agriculture sector.
FEARFUL: Stephen Bennett and farmer Brad Newton have expressed fears about Labor's plans for the agriculture sector. Contributed

Farmers fear for future under Labor

MEMBER for Burnett Stephen Bennett came out swinging to fight for the rights of farming families as Annastacia Palaszczuk's new government was sworn in.

Mr Bennett said he was fearful for the future of agriculture under a re-elected Palaszczuk Labor Government, particularly given Labor's views on vegetation management reforms and power prices.

"I hold genuine fears that this Labor Government will continue down a destructive path of pushing aggressive, anti-agriculture laws on our hard-working farmers and landholders and completely wipe them out of existence."

Local landholder Brad Newton holds similar fears.

Mr Newton said the future of his business and farm were under threat by a government determined to take away property rights.

"They will continue to take more country off us and take away our property rights altogether," he said.

"We are going to lose people off the land - young people aren't going to want to stay on the land. They feel that there's no future in farming.

"Why do people in the rural sector have to pay for the ideologies of people in the city?"

Mr Bennett challenged the Premier to be honest about her government's future plans for the state's agriculture sector.

He said he feared Labor's management of energy would also see the demise of farming families.

"We haven't seen any action from Labor to help farmers and irrigators battling high electricity costs ... they've done nothing but blame them for their energy use," he said.

North Isis cane farmer John Russo said increasing power costs continued to plague irrigators despite their best efforts to cut back on energy use.

Mr Russo said in the past three years he had, at considerable expense, installed a combination of low pressure irrigators, variable speed drives and a solar pump for one irrigator.

"We understand that the majority of the voting power is not within the rural sector, but if this trend of escalating power prices continues, farming as we know it today will no longer exist."



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