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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2008 Week 3 Hansard (3 April) . . Page.. 1047..


Schedule 1 of the Pest Plants and Animals Act 2005 lists whether a declared pest plant is notifiable, prohibited, must be suppressed or contained. Staff conduct spot checks on plant nurseries to ensure that they are not trading declared pest plants and thus spreading weed species.

Weed control work in high conservation value areas is prioritised annually. The most invasive weed species are targeted first. For example, serrated tussock control in Gungahlin and Jerrabomberra grasslands. In addition, new infestations of invasive weeds are given highest priority to avoid weed free areas becoming degraded.

In addition, Parks, Conservation and Lands have standard operating procedures for vehicle hygiene, herbicide storage and record keeping, and use of weed spraying equipment. New staff are made aware of the ways weed seed can move between areas if vehicles and equipment are not kept clean. Parks Ranger staff also enforce a clean vehicle policy for contractors.

(4) The Pest Plants and Animals Act 2005 includes a provision for the preparation of Pest Plant Management Plans. These are prepared to assist land managers meet their weed control obligations. An example is the draft Mexican Feather Grass Pest Plant Management Plan. This is complemented by a weed alert flyer which is being distributed to land managers across Canberra.

Parks, Conservation and Lands staff run information sessions to alert and train staff, Parkcare volunteers and rural leaseholders on eradication of particular weeds. They also provide free brochures such as 'Garden Plants Going Bush'. A new booklet is currently being prepared in conjunction with the plant nursery industry called 'Grow-Me-Instead' to encourage the use of non-invasive garden plants.

Further, Parks, Conservation and Lands run field days (with staff, rural leaseholders, contractors, and neighbouring local and state government staff) to educate on the identification of weed species such as serrated tussock and Chilean needle grass control and inform of best management practices.

(5) Parks, Conservation and Lands (PCL) have developed strong partnerships with Parkcare and Urban Landcare groups. For example, the Red Hill Parkcare group (Red Hill Regenerators) has worked with the Parks staff to stop the spread of St John's Wort and Chilean needle grass into areas where the nationally endangered native daisy, the Button Wrinklewort, grows.

Contractors undertake most of the weed control work in the ACT. Parks, Conservation and Lands manage these contracts.

In the rural area, Parks Conservation and Lands undertakes roadside weed spraying of invasive weeds to complement weed control activities on neighbouring rural leases. It is often from road edges, which are highly disturbed sites that invasive weeds like African lovegrass can establish and then move into neighbouring land.

Schools—closures

(Question No 1936)

Mrs Dunne asked the Minister for Education and Training, upon notice, on 4 March 2008:


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