30 Jan 2012

Log levy proposed

1:02 pm on 30 January 2012

The Forest Owners Association is proposing a commodity levy on logs to ensure all plantation owners pay a fair share towards industry activities.

Chief executive David Rhodes says if a majority of owners vote for it, they would pay the proposed levy on both domestic and export logs at the time of harvest.

He says it would be about 20 cents per cubic metre. The size of a plantation would be taken into account.

Based on last year's harvest of 20 million cubic metres of logs, that would bring in about $4 million per year.

Mr Rhodes says the levy would pay for research, educational programmes and promotion of the forest industry.

These are currently funded by a voluntary levy, which only two-thirds of forest owners pay.

But he says a compulsory levy is necessary because those who don't pay are benefitting from the contributions of others.

Information roadshows will take place next month and the levy will take affect from mid-year if it gains enough support.