The Auditor-General has been asked to urgently review all payouts made under the Tasmanian
Intergovernmental Agreement on Forestry.

The Coalition has written to the Auditor-General expressing concerns about aspects of the payments
and raising the spectre that information could be ‘lost’ in the event of a change of Government.
Concerns included:

• Funding allocated without assessment through a formal application.
• Payments negotiated outside the funding envelope via an exchange of letters.
Coalition Forestry spokesman Senator Richard Colbeck said the opposition had pursued issues with
the scheme through the Senate Estimates process and also referred concerns for investigation by the
Auditor-General.

“We’ve been working in a systematic and methodical way on this issue,” Senator Colbeck said.

“With genuine concerns raised in previous reports and programs run by DAFF, we believe it is
reasonable that all payments made under this program be scrutinised.

“And with the possibility that access to some information could be lost in the circumstance of a change
in Government, it is important this work be completed as soon as possible.”

Senator Colbeck said an independent, politically neutral investigation was critical, given that politics
and self-interest were an inherent part of the IGA on Forestry.

“It does appear counter-intuitive that some of the people who have supported this process have
actually signed on,” he said. “It may be that they have been offered special deals to do so.
“It is appropriate that these special deals are brought out into the open.”
SENATOR THE HON RICHARD COLBECK Senator for Tasmania Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Fisheries and Forestry Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Innovation, Industry and Science