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A huge response to freshwater meetings in the region reflects the rural communities level of concern about the Government's proposals, Waitaki MP Jacqui Dean says. 

"The meetings, in Fairlie, Papakaio and Waimate last week, were characterised by apprehension and disbelief about the Government’s Freshwater policies, which have the potential to change the face of farming in this area forever.

"Farmers and rural business people said they were angry at the short 8-week consultation period, while a lack of clarity throughout the document, with little, or no viable economic modelling, made it impossible for businesses to clarify the full impact on their operation.

‘National's Agriculture Spokesperson Todd Muller and I listened carefully to concerns and offered our support to those in attendance.

"in times of uncertainty it’s important to stop and take the pulse of the district - to have conversations and clarity around the issues faced by people across the electorate.

“With submissions due to close next week, the level of concern and apprehension was not surprising. Mr Muller and I have taken the feed-back on board and promise to continue to hold the MFE and Minister David Parker to account on every aspect of this policy.

"Other issues rural issues such as climate change, methane targets and the cattle disease Mycoplasma Bovis were also discussed at the meetings."

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