Tasmanian Government to pay Launceston sawmiller $1m

A Launceston sawmiller will receive AU$1 million to stay in the timber sector rather than leave, in a record agreement struck under the Tasmanian Government's rejigged Regional Sawmiller Structural Adjustment Grants Program reports ABC News.

Barbers Sawmill was to pocket AU$2,032,875 under the exit scheme set up by the previous Federal Labor government. The State Government has since restructured the program with the Commonwealth's consent. Sawmillers now have the option of keeping half their exit payout while remaining in operation.

Barbers Sawmill managing director Graham Barber told reporters on Tuesday he would use the AU$1 million to upgrade equipment and had secured a contract to receive sawlogs from Forestry Tasmania. "That'll involve upgrading our equipment, buildings, vehicles and allow us to buy equipment to sawmill smaller logs," he said.

Resources Minister Paul Harriss hoped up to eight other sawmillers would follow Mr Barber's lead by opting to stay in operation.

Source: ABC News

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