Landcorp's submission to Sir Michael Cullen's Tax Working Group (TWG) is a kick in the guts to rural communities, National’s Nathan Guy and David Carter say.
“Landcorp’s sneaky submission to the TWG proposing a water tax, nitrogen fertiliser tax and not opposing a capital gains tax proves how out of touch the state-owned company is with farmers on the ground,” Mr Guy says.
“With 6700 other submissions, why was Landcorp pressured to put in a submission that was more than a month late? The reality seems to be that the TWG are hell-bent on introducing environmental taxes and a capital gains tax, so they leaned on Landcorp to submit supporting more taxes and levies.
“To make matters worse, Landcorp’s submission wasn’t publicly listed on the TWG website until it became public through the Official Information Act last week. Why was this submission hidden?
“Farmers and growers nationwide have been working incredibly hard to improve their farming practices to reduce environmental impacts without government intervention and more taxes.
“Landcorp has taxpayers' money, the best tractors, the best laneways, the best of everything and it is out there saying it is holier than thou. Landcorp should be very careful about welcoming new taxes on hard-working farmers and growers when these taxes will not affect them.
“Primary sector bodies collectively submitted against new taxes and they feel deceived by Landcorp,” Mr Carter says.
“It’s clear that Shane Jones is not on top of his responsibilities and has been too busy doling out his provincial slush fund and not reining in Landcorp.
“More taxes will continue to drive up the cost of food and therefore the cost of living which will make us less competitive in international markets.
“Technology that helps inform practical farming decisions is the way forward for the agriculture industry, not more taxes.
“This is typical of this Government’s tax and spend attitude.”