Farmers support protection of grazing on crown reserves

NSW Farmers has called on state parliament to protect grazing on crown reserves following legal uncertainty which has arisen around the status of these reserves.

Some 7000 crown reserves which include more than 4000 with grazing licenses could be affected by a court case last year.

NSW Farmers President Fiona Simson said that it is incomprehensible that due to some legal loophole these grazing licences, which have been used by farmers in some cases for generations, are invalid. The NSW Parliament needs to have this resolved as soon as possible to prevent further uncertainty.

The Goomallee claim, heard in the NSW Court of Appeal in August 2012, found that a crown reserve surrounded by the Goomallee rural property had been reserved for public recreation and that the license granted for the activity of grazing was inconsistent with this purpose.

The government has introduced the Crown Lands Amendment (multiple land use) Bill 2013 to allow grazing by farmers. The Bill is expected to be debated in the upper house this week.

Ms Simson said that NSW Farmers had engaged with the government and the opposition to ensure that grazing on crown reserves was allowed to continue.

“We want landholders to be allowed to graze on crown reserves and we now call on all parties to commit to their assurances and allow grazing on crown reserves to continue.”

If landholders have any questions, they are advised to call Crown Lands information line on 1300 886 235.

Contact: Veneta Chapple

Phone: 0429 990 218

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