News

Parliament to debate bill to identify levy payers

Grain Central, September 12, 2016

Grain farmers’ investment in research and development will be the subject of one of the first bills to be debated in Federal Parliament this week.

When the House resumes today the newly-elected Turnbull Government will attempt to progress the legislation to allow the development of a levy-payer register – the Primary Industries Levies and Charges Collection Amendment Bill 2016

In practice, this Bill will mean for the first time the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) will be able to identify all levy payers and structure their engagement on research, development and extension accordingly.

GrainGrowers General Manager Policy and Advocacy David McKeon said currently there was no mechanism to identify who was paying research and development levies.

“The current crazy situation means that the GRDC is not able to accurately ensure they are reaching all levy payers with communication of their research,” Mr McKeon said.

GrainGrowers has been a key champion of the Bill, working with the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources and major political parties to ensure that the design of the legislation is in the best interest of grain levy-payers.

“To ensure a close connection between grain levy payers and the GRDC, GrainGrowers strongly supports the passing of this Bill,” Mr McKeon said.

“We’ve been working closely with government to ensure that this enabling legislation will allow the development of a levy payer register, while ensuring the checks and balances to protect levy payers information.

Once the Bill has passed through Parliament, work will progress quickly on the guidelines underpinning the levy-payer register.

Source: GrainGrowers. Read GrainGrowers submission regarding the levy payer database legislation here

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