Forest Growers Committee

Forest Growers Levy update and call for objections
(Closes 26 August 2021)

Thank you to our IFA/AFG members who participated in the registration process for the forest growers levy last year. The final submission for the proposal was sent to the Assistant Minister for Forestry and Fisheries early in July.
AFPA undertook extensive consultations in accordance with the Levy guidelines:  How to establish or amend agricultural levies (2020) with potential forest grower levy payers around introducing a new RD&E levy, increasing the PHA biosecurity levy and introducing a 20,000m3 exemption  threshold.

Over 95% of forest growers levy payers by log volume supported:
 A new RD&E levy component to be set at $0.035 per m3 in the first year of introduction, 
 $0.06 per m3 in  year two and $0.085 per m3 in the third and subsequent years;
 an increase to the Plant Health Australia biosecurity levy component of $0.045 per m3; and
*   the creation of a volume-based levy exemption threshold for growers producing less than 20,000 m3
*   A 30-business day objection period is now underway in line with the Levy Guidelines.
This objection/feedback period will run from the 14 July to 26 August 2021.
If you are a potential forest growers levy payer and you have any objections to the proposal, you can provide your feedback via three options below:
 AFPA (02) 6285 3833 or
 Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment
*   Assistant Minister Duniam

Any feedback can be provided anonymously if preferred or it will be responded to directly. If you will be submitting an objection by email please include the subject heading – forest growers levy, ensure you include your contact  details if you would like a direct response, and the reasons you are objecting to part or all of a proposal.

 Please do not hesitate to contact Natalie Heazlewood at AFPA with any questions.
Natalie Heazlewood , Senior Policy Manager, AFPA, PO Box 239, DEAKIN WEST ACT 2600

Forest Growers RD&E and biosecurity funding boost - change to levy

Australian Forest Growers and the Institute of Foresters of Australia (IFA/AFG) have been consulted by the AFPA Growers Research Advisory Committee (GRAC) on an initiative to increase R & D and biosecurity funding for the forest sector.  As a result of this consultation, Australia’s forest growers are being asked to support an increase to the sector’s R&D and biosecurity levy to increase the sector’s commitment to research, development and extension (RD&E) and biosecurity.

Working with governments, AFPA, Forest and Wood Products Australia (FWPA) and Plant Health Australia (PHA) developed an RD&E and biosecurity strategy that, if supported across the sector through an increase to the forest grower levy, will grow the value of the industry, boost productivity, lower costs, increase resilience and reduce losses from drought, fire, pests and diseases.

AFPA is proposing an increase of $0.135 per m3 to the forest grower levy rate, which will be divided as follows:

•             an increase to the forestry RD&E levy from $0.05 to $0.135 per m3, to significantly increase investment in forestry research through FWPA and
•             an increase to the PHA biosecurity levy from $0.005 per m3 to $0.05 per m3 to protect our trees and forests against the threat of exotic pests. 

As a result of the IFA/AFG consultation the proposal would impact growers if their thinning or harvest exceeds 20,000 cu m in any one financial year.  It is proposed that small annual harvest volumes (< 20,000 cu m) are not subject to the levy. 

Click HERE to read more about the proposal  

The proposed levy increase needs to be agreed upon and voted on by a majority of forest growers who participate before it can be submitted to government, with a request for funding matching.

Members are encouraged to register to be part of the voting process and participate in the consultation process - registrations close 6 November 2020.

Forest Grower Committee

# Kevin Harding (Chair)
# Jan Newport
# Nigel Calvert
# Rowan Reid
# Daryl Killin
# Martin Moroni
# Lachie McCaw
# Maddie Shelton
# Mark Wright