New Game Animal bill undermines conservation

Press Release – Green Party

Neither the Minister of Conservation nor any government agency is willing to support the Game and Animal Council Bill, the Green Party said today. “This bill would lead to the destruction of parts of our conservation estate, places that New Zealanders …19 October 2011

New Game Animal bill undermines conservation

Neither the Minister of Conservation nor any government agency is willing to support the Game and Animal Council Bill, the Green Party said today.

“This bill would lead to the destruction of parts of our conservation estate, places that New Zealanders want to love and protect,” Green Party Conservation spokesperson Kevin Hague said.

“The Minister for Conservation, The Treasury, The Department of Conservation, and many other Government bodies are opposed to the Bill because it directly undermines the purpose of the Conservation Act, pest control programmes, and New Zealand’s clean green brand.”

Documents released under the Official Information Act show the Minister of Conservation and consulted Government agencies are worried about the Bill — which would create a Game Animal Council that had the power to release game animals onto conservation land and issue hunting permits — has no real purpose.

The Regulatory Impact Statement for the Bill said it was a “solution without a problem” and that it would have a high regulatory burden, high costs, and be the not be “aligned to the current wild animal control regime and legislative framework”.

“It is no wonder that the Government left it until the last possible minute to table this Bill,” Mr Hague said.

“By leaving it to the last minute, with no chance of passing in this term, the Government has hopefully signalled that it has no intention of passing this law.

Mr Hague said that the best way to protect New Zealand’s unique places and species was to fund conservation properly.

“Instead of cutting the Department of Conservation’s budget, the Minister should be arguing for increases.

“One of our priorities for the election is to create new green jobs. By using the Department of Conservation to coordinate conservation projects we can create jobs that restore our ecosystems and protect New Zealand’s ‘100% pure’ brand,” Mr Hague said.

The Animal Council Bill was part of the National Government’s confidence and supply agreement with Peter Dunne

OIA Documents can be accessed here.

ENDS

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