I attended the TFIA community information session in Huonville this week in the hope of promoting my blackwood growers cooperative proposal and gaining some understanding of where things are at with the Tasmanian Forest Industry Agreement (TFIA).
I also went seeking an update on possible Government funding options for the blackwood coop. This was the first of a series of information sessions being run around the State this week.
It turned into something of a farce. Depending upon who I spoke to, I was either told that no forestry-related projects would be eligible for funding under the TFIA; or that commercially viable, robust forestry projects would be eligible for funding.
I can only assume that the current level of confusion between the parties regarding funding under the TFIA will be resolved at some point.
If good forestry-related projects are indeed excluded from TFIA funding then the forest industry has the very clear message from both State and Federal Governments that it has lost all political support. That would be an extraordinary situation. In the mean time I am launching a web site to help gain support and interest in the Blackwood Cooperative proposal.
Anyone who is interested in supporting the Coop proposal, particularly farmers/landowners who are interested in growing commercial blackwood, are encouraged to visit the web site.
The more support and interest there is for this project, the greater the chance of gaining funding support.
Otherwise I found the information session very useful and enjoyable, and encourage people to attend.
Details of the remaining meetings are:
Smithton RSL - November 24 – 5-8pm, Triabunna Town Hall - December 1 – 5-8pm. All interested members of the community are encouraged to come along to find information and ask any questions about the Agreement.