A bill that will increase hunting opportunities in Victoria has been passed by the Legislative Council.
The Victorian Game Management Authority (GMA) is now one step closer to having the power to expand and promote hunting in the state, thanks to a private members bill by Seymour-based Member for Northern Victoria Daniel Young.
The Game Management Authority Amendment Bill 2017 will now be tabled in the lower house.
‘‘It is great to see this bill successfully pass the upper house,’’ Mr Young said.
‘‘The Andrews Government needs to stop talking and take action. They now must commit to hunters, and the communities that support hunting, and put this bill through the lower house.’’
Mr Young said the amendments would expand the GMA’s role from strictly regulatory to proper management, which falls in line with the objectives of the state’s Sustainable Hunting Action Plan 2016-2020.
‘‘The Government’s Sustainable Hunting Action Plan is a hallow promise without implementing legislation to expand the GMA’s role,’’ Mr Young said.
‘‘Likewise, the GMA cannot fulfil the plan’s objectives without the legislation being proposed.
‘‘The potential for a body such as the GMA is of enormous value to hunters and this state, and cannot be overstated.’’
If adopted, the bill will amend the Game Management Authority Act 2014 and would give the GMA greater functions to actively support the development of recreational and commercial hunting in Victoria.
It would also have a greater role in educating hunters and the public about the rights and obligations associated with game hunting.