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Notice given 3 December 2002

979  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—

(1) Can the Minister confirm that the maximum amount of assistance provided to individual rural producers in the form of a Commonwealth re-establishment grant to exit rural enterprise under the AAA Farm Help - Supporting Families Through Change Program and its predecessors is currently $45 000.

(2) With reference to the AAA Farm Help - Supporting Families Through Change Program, and its predecessors for the past 10 financial years: (a) how many rural producers have applied for assistance to exit rural enterprise in the form of a Commonwealth re-establishment grant; (b) how many rural producers have received assistance to exit rural enterprise in the form of a Commonwealth re-establishment grant; (c) what has been the total amount of funding expended to provide rural producers with assistance to exit rural enterprise; and (d) how many rural producers have received less than the full amount of assistance available to leave rural enterprise in the form of a Commonwealth re-establishment grant due to their failure to meet the requirements of the assets test.

980  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—

(1) Is the Government examining options for tracking livestock via systems such as a national livestock identification system.

(2) Which identification systems has the Government examined in the past 5 years.

(3) What was the quantum of funding spent by the department during each of the past 5 financial years on feasibility studies on national livestock identification systems.

(4) What was the quantum of funding spent by the department on feasibility studies of each system examined in past 5 financial years.

(5) Is the Minister aware of any meetings between the department, and state and territory departments on the issue of a national approach to livestock identification in the past 2 years.

(6) (a) When did these meetings occur; (b) who attended each meeting; (c) what was discussed at each meeting; and (d) what records have been kept of the discussion at these meetings.