Wednesday 7th December 2016
Leader of The Nationals and Member for Murray Plains Peter Walsh says the Andrews Labor Government is unfairly targeting farmers and harvest contractors in a blatant revenue raising exercise for the government.
“Since the beginning of harvest local farmers and contractors have been targeted by “Operation Big Wheels” – a police blitz on trucks in regional areas.
Mr Walsh said local farmers and contractors working through their busiest season for many years are being frustrated by the process with some farmers reporting being pulled over up to four times a day for the same checks.
He said farmers have received defect notices for small tears in seats and chipped windscreens and vehicles crucial to harvest are being ordered off the road until the repairs are made.
“It almost beggars belief that Daniel Andrews in his wisdom has chosen peak harvest time to allocate additional police resources focused on farmers and contractors.
“It is even harder to rationalise given that crime and drug issues are spiraling in rural communities fueled by a lack of police resources.
“Farmers are forced to drive every day of the year on roads that are not maintained and to live in fear in their communities because the policies of Daniel Andrews and his city centric government are controlled by the demands of union mates and the need to sure up votes in city seats.
“Operation Big Wheels” is aptly named – the big wheels of the Labor party once again exhibiting a gross mismanagement of money and resources in country Victoria ” Mr Walsh said.