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[Recently] at Hamilton’s Kingsgate Hotel, ACT Leader Dr Don Brash announced the party’s Rural Policy to boost New Zealand’s productive primary sector by reducing taxes, cutting bureaucracy, keeping agriculture out of the ETS, and tackling rural crime.
“Farming is the backbone of New Zealand’s economy. ACT values the productive sector, and recognises the contribution it makes to economic growth, boosting living standards for all New Zealanders,” Dr Brash said.
“ACT’s rural policy focuses on getting the economy back on track. Right now Government spending is at an all-time high. This hurts rural communities twice - first through higher taxes, and again through a high exchange rate when the Government borrows from overseas.
“ACT’s Spending Cap Bill would immediately put a cap on government spending to ensure that the Labour spending binge that got us in debt in the first place, cannot happen again.
“Farmers have been saddled with higher energy costs due to the ETS and will be hit again if their biological emissions are included in the scheme from 2015. ACT will hold National to its promise to keep agriculture out of the ETS and is the only party in Parliament who would do so.
“The bureaucracy of the Resource Management Act treats rural people like squatters on their own land and stifles economic growth. ACT will overhaul the RMA and reinstate the right for property owners to use their land as they see fit, subject to respecting the rights of others.
“ACT also recognises that our rural citizens are particularly vulnerable to crime – often living over 30 minutes from the nearest police station. ACT would review the self-defence laws to ensure that law-abiding rural citizens can protect their families, properties, and livelihood without fear of being unjustly dragged through the courts.
“Rural citizens were neglected by Labour and are now being taken for granted by National. Only ACT is promising policies for a strong, vibrant, and safe rural sector,” Dr Brash said.
To read more on ACT's rural policy click here.