Parliament resumed this week after the winter break so on the first available opportunity the community petition (458 signatures) urging action to manage the impact of the excessive population of pied cormorants in Stansbury and Port Vincent was lodged to the House of Assembly on Tuesday 24/8/21.
I spoke to the Petition in the chamber next day (visit the Parliament section of this website if you wish to view the video) via a Grieves speech to further shine light on this escalating problem and I have since received a formal response from the Environment minister to my correspondence to him on the matter back in July.
Minister Spiers has recommended continued collaboration with council, looking at increasing the number of cull permits, and advises there will be continued monitoring of the population on Troubridge Island to ascertain whether management or intervention is appropriate.
Thank you to all who continue to send in feedback and photos of the damage to the environment and infrastructure these birds are making in Port Vincent and Stansbury. There is no doubt the situation is affecting locals and visitors, with serious repercussions for local tourism and the local economy.
In more positive news, it was terrific to see the reintroduction of 40 brush-tailed bettongs into Innes National Park after years of preparation work. These rare marsupials long locally extinct are fitted with radio-tracking collars to allow for tracking and will provide valuable information for their continued conservation.
I also welcomed the announced $3 million of State Government funding for a new lookout, upgraded campgrounds and upgrades for visitor facilities at Chinaman’s Hill, Stenhouse Bay and Shell Beach. The Dhilba Guuranda-Innes National Park is already an important drawcard for tourists to SYP and this investment is overdue and deserved and will ensure our national park continues to be a beacon for visitors.
In grants news, the Digital Donation Program is open (the program that allows for community organisations to apply to receive surplus government computers and laptops), and the Export Accelerator Program was recently relaunched to support small to medium sized businesses looking to expand into interstate or overseas markets (applications close 1 October). For further information visit www.fraserellis.com.au
Public voting opened for the 2021 Ag Town of the Year initiative and among the 59 towns nominated are Ardrossan, Coobowie, Kadina and Moonta. To support these local towns get through to the final five to vie for the title of 2021 South Australian Agricultural Town of the Year, please visit www.agtown.com.au and cast your vote! (Note it closes 2/9/21)