Saturday, 01 September 2018 09:55

Passed without proper scrutiny

Written by 
Opposition agriculture spokesman, Nathan Guy. Opposition agriculture spokesman, Nathan Guy.

National's agriculture spokesman, Nathan Guy, says while some of the NAIT changes were needed, their passing under urgency has prevented proper scrutiny of them.

Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has had months to introduce this Bill into Parliament, but instead he expanded wide-ranging search powers under urgency.

 “Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) will be able to turn up to farmers’ properties without getting a warrant and seize anything they want, unannounced and without cause. 

 “National asked Mr O’Connor to send the Bill to select committee during the two-week recess to allow public input and ensure there are no unintended consequences for farmers, but the Minister refused.

 “National proposed amendments during the debate that an officer needs reasonable cause to suspect non-compliance with NAIT before entering the property. 

 “We also proposed that these wide-ranging warrantless powers being curtailed, so a NAIT officer can’t seize property without obtaining a warrant.

 “Unfortunately, both of these safeguard amendments were voted down by the Government.

 “However, National did successfully move an amendment that requires the Minister to report to Parliament next year on how these expanded powers are being used. 

“We will await this review with a great deal of interest.

 “National reluctantly supported the legislation to improve NAIT’s performance but remain gravely concerned about the process and invasion of farmer’s privacy.”

 He says Damien O’Connor had months to bring this bill into parliament, but instead has expanded wide-ranging search powers under urgency.

“MPI will be able to turn up to farmers’ properties without getting a warrant and seize anything they want -- unannounced and without cause. 

“National asked Mr O’Connor to send the bill to select committee during the two-week recess to allow public input and ensure there were no unintended consequences for farmers, but the minister refused.”

Guy says National proposed that these wide-ranging warrantless powers be curtailed to prevent a NAIT officer being able to seize property without obtaining a warrant.

“Unfortunately, both of these safeguard amendments were voted down by the Government.”

Guy says National reluctantly supported the legislation to improve NAIT’s performance but remains gravely concerned about the process and invasion of farmers’ privacy.

Meanwhile Federated Farmers president Katie Milne says she felt the process was rushed by using the urgency provisions. She says legislation is always better when more time is taken to find fishhooks. 

More like this

Retiring MP’s $2m vote of confidence in dairying

Former Minister for Primary Industries, and retiring MP, Nathan Guy says his plans to invest more than $2 million in a new innovative dairy shed is a vote of confidence in the future of the dairy industry.

Reduce the risks while buying stock

How can you minimise the risks of introducing new diseases or parasites when bringing stock into your farm ‘bubble’ from another one?

Animal tracing improves

The latest NAIT data shows farmers are increasing their engagement with the system and becoming more compliant.

Animal tracing improves

The latest NAIT data shows farmers are increasing their engagement with the system and becoming more compliant.

Featured

Water reforms come at a cost

The government’s new freshwater laws, signed off this week, have the potential to create significant unnecessary costs for ratepayers, farmers and entire communities, Federated Farmers says.

2020 harvest yields up

Final harvest data for wheat, barley and oats (milling/malting and feed) in 2020 show yields were up 17% overall across the six crops.

 

Difficult but the right call

DairyNZ chief executive Dr Tim Mackle says the joint decision three years ago to eradicate Mycoplamsa bovis was a difficult call.

Milking cluster milks runner-up award

DeLaval has come away with the runner up prize in this year’s Fieldays Online innovation competition with a new milking cluster that eliminates the need for conventional liner changes.

Glow worms to cows

Thomas Lundman's work focus has gone from tracking tiny critters in pitch black caves to looking after considerably larger animals in paddocks near Whakatane.

» Latest Print Issues Online

Milking It

A ticking timebomb?

There could be another dairy health scare brewing in China and this one starts in our backyard.

Please explain

Does anyone in the Government understand the essential role St John Ambulance has in our society?

» Connect with Dairy News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter