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Breeders Support Horse Disease Levy Bills

Thursday, 4th September 2008

Thoroughbred Breeders Australia yesterday confirmed its support for the Horse Disease Response Levy Bills currently being debated in Federal Parliament. The legislation proposes a levy scheme whereby the horse industry contributes towards the costs of responding to any future disease outbreak. TBA president John Messara said the legislation was needed to provide certainty & security for all horse sectors, noting: "Passage of the bills through Parliament is the 1st step towards the horse industry signing the Emergency Animal Response Disease Agreement, which commits the Government to fighting any future diseases in conjunction with industry. Without a signed EADRA there is no compulsion on any Government to contribute to the costs of containing & eradicating any future diseases. The strong differences of opinion about how a levy would apply should not defeat the legislation, but be left for debate & negotiation involving all interested parties & the Government. All horse sectors have a vital interest in working with Government to secure their industry against the crippling costs of disease. As things presently stand, the financial burden of future horse diseases falls entirely on industry & Government intervention is purely by grace & favour."

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