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Have your say on the management of weeds in the Hunter

Hunter Local Land Services is encouraging members of the community to have their say on weed management in the region.

The draft Hunter Regional Strategic Weed Management Plan 2017-2022 is now open for public exhibition and interested individuals and organisations are invited to provide feedback.

Chair of the Hunter Regional Weeds Committee, and Hunter Local Land Services Board Member, Daryl Dutton said the plan will guide resource allocation and investment in the region over the next five years, as part of a new approach to weed management across the state.

“Weeds are an ongoing issue for the community throughout our region from the country to the coast. How we manage weeds in the Hunter is an issue that is relevant to everyone, including public and private land managers, ratepayers and non-ratepayers,” Mr Dutton said.

“The consultation period is an opportunity for farmers, organisations and interested community members to provide feedback on the management of weeds in our region and across the state.”

The draft Hunter Regional Strategic Weed Management Plan will be on public exhibition until 8 March 2017. Submissions can be made online, or by attending one of three drop-in consultation sessions being held during the exhibition period:

Maitland:Friday 17 February, 10am - 1pm  Maitland Town Hall, High St
Taree:Monday 20 February, 10am - 1pm  Hunter Local Land Services office, 98 Victoria St
Scone:Tuesday 21 February, 10am - 1pm  Upper Hunter Shire Council, 135 Liverpool St

The plan outlines strategies and actions to achieve improved weed management and lists the priority weeds for the region.  It has been developed collaboratively with Hunter Local Land Services and the Hunter Regional Weeds Committee, which includes representatives from major stakeholder groups.

Weeds are managed under the Biosecurity Act 2015, which adopts the concept of a general biosecurity duty. It means that anyone who is aware of a potential risk should take all reasonable and practical measures to minimise or eliminate that risk. The plan is a direct response to this legislative reform.

The primary outcome of the weed reform process will be the integration of weed management efforts across the state. For the first time in NSW, there will be a set of agreed priorities and actions which apply across both public and private land. Increased collaboration in the management of weeds will improve biosecurity outcomes and increase agricultural productivity.

“We are keen to hear from all members of the public, whether they are landholders or not, about the strategies, actions and priority weeds proposed in the plan,” Mr Dutton said.

Copies of the plan are available on the Local Land Services Open website at open.lls.nsw.gov.au or from any Hunter Local Land Services office.

Media contact: Jillian Ayre - 0418 960 817.