Cassy O’Connor Greens MR
The Tasmanian Greens today condemned the Bartlett Government for ignoring the economic needs of the wider Tarkine region in order to appease Forestry Tasmania and pander to a narrow constituency by seeking to create a wedge issue in Braddon in the lead up to the 2010 State Election.

‘BULLDOZER BARTLETT’ PROVES HE IS AS DIVISIVE AND SHORT-SIGHTED AS LENNON
Tarkine National Park Will Deliver Sustainable Economic Growth – Forestry Tas’s Loop Road Will Not
Cassy O’Connor MP
Greens Shadow Parks, Heritage and Tourism Spokesperson
Wednesday, 4 February 2009

www.tas.greens.org.au
The Tasmanian Greens today condemned the Bartlett Government for ignoring the economic needs of the wider Tarkine region in order to appease Forestry Tasmania and pander to a narrow constituency by seeking to create a wedge issue in Braddon in the lead up to the 2010 State Election.

Greens Shadow Parks, Heritage and Tourism spokesperson Cassy O’Connor MP said the Premier is putting at risk the long-term sustainable growth of the North-West and West Coast regions in his clear determination to divide the community, yet again, over environmental issues in Tasmania.

The Greens’ released an alternative Tarkine National Park Proposal in December 2008, which demonstrated employment and business benefits for the broader West Coast region. (see electronic attachment).

“Make no mistake; this is all about the Lennonesque Bartlett Government’s desperate determination to hold a seat in Braddon where it has three fundamentally dud local members in Bryan Green, Steve Kons and Brenton Best,” Ms O’Connor said.

“How is it the government can afford $23 million for Forestry’s road, but apparently cannot afford a new hospital which will benefit all Tasmanians?”

“Any government that was genuine in its commitment to Braddon would declare a Tarkine National Park and market it nationally and internationally as a unique wilderness visitor destination.”

“Today’s announcement is an outright rejection of the Cradle Coast Authority’s Tarkine Tourism Development Strategy which forecasts that in nine years the Tarkine could inject $58 million in localised tourism spending a year, and support 1100 local jobs.”

“The Strategy makes it clear that these benefits will only flow if a Tarkine brand is developed and marketed, and if visitor enjoyment of a true wilderness experience is assured. A Tarkine National Park would help to ensure these economic benefits flowed throughout the region. The Bartlett Government’s destructive and divisive Loop Road will not.”

“Regional communities from Strahan, Zeehan and Waratah, through to Stanley and Wynyard as well as smaller local tourism operators are left off the Forestry Tasmania $23 million loop road map.”

“Braddon is the second most disadvantaged electorate in the nation in terms of social and educational outcomes for its people, yet the Premier refuses to declare a Tarkine National Park and in the process puts at risk 1100 future jobs across the broader west coast community. He is putting politics before people.”

“Bulldozer Bartlett’s modus operandi in Braddon would make Paul Lennon proud,” Ms O’Connor said.

ATTACHED: Tasmanian Greens’ Tarkine National Park Proposal 2008.

‘BULLDOZER BARTLETT’ CAN’T JUSTIFY FORESTRY LOOP ROAD ON ECONOMIC, ENVIRONMENTAL OR SOCIAL GROUNDS
Cassy O’Connor MP
Greens Shadow Parks, Heritage and Tourism Spokesperson
Thursday, 5 February 2009
www.tas.greens.org.au
The Tasmanian Greens today accused the Premier of using $23 million taxpayer dollars to prop up the ailing fortunes of Forestry Tasmania’s Dismal Swamp and Phantom Valley tourist ventures, at the expense of long-term sustainable economic growth for communities in the Tarkine region.

Greens Shadow Parks, Heritage and Tourism spokesperson Cassy O’Connor MP said it is clear Dismal Swamp is a dismal failure as a tourist attraction, a key reason Forestry Tasmania pushed so hard for its loop road which would – conveniently – lead visitors past both Dismal Swamp and the proposed Phantom Valley tourism ventures.

“Dismal Swamp is a near total failure as a tourist attraction. Having posted a $38 million loss last year, Forestry Tasmania will be haemorrhaging money both through falling woodchip royalty revenues and lousy tourist ventures,” Ms O’Connor said.

“David Bartlett is clearly putting Forestry Tasmania’s ailing financial fortunes and cheap, short-term politics ahead of the economic wellbeing of towns like Strahan, Queenstown, Waratah, Rosebery and Savage River.”

“In opposing the establishment of a Tarkine National Park that would generate long-term sustainable income and jobs for the region, the Premier is also rejecting the Cradle Coast’s Tarkine Tourism Strategy with its emphasis on building a unique wilderness brand to draw national and international visitors.”

“The Strategy makes it clear a genuine Tarkine brand could deliver $58 million in localised income in a year, and 1100 long-term jobs. That is what the Premier is opposing – real jobs and income for the NW and West Coast.”

“This is the same Premier who said he wanted to heal the divisions in Tasmania, yet he has chosen to unstrategically, misuse public funding to support a divisive, destructive road through the largest unbroken tract of rainforest in Australia.”

“The Bartlett Government has ignored common sense, sound economics and the chorus of objections to Forestry’s loop road from local tourist operators and key local government figures. It appears set to condemn the voters of Braddon to a flurry of porkbarrelling, while simultaneously treating their long-term interest with contempt,” Ms O’Connor said.