VISITOR STRUCTURES, PEST CONTROL AND ENDANGERED SPECIES BENEFIT FROM BOOST TO CONSERVATIONConservation
The Coalition Government is committed to additional Conservation funding for visitor structures, pest control, endangered species and marine reserves in this year's Budget.
"The Government has allocated a further $6.750 million a year from 1999/2000 for the upgrade and management of visitor structures. This funding will ensure the on-going safety of the Department of Conservation's structures, and is on top of $30 million previously provided for this purpose," Minister of Conservation Nick Smith said.
"The Department of Conservation manages nearly 16,000 visitor structures, many of which were not constructed to a particular standard at the time they were built. This new funding will help ensure these structures are consistent with national standards."
Overall conservation funding increases from $189.0 million in 1997/98 to $199.5 million this year with additional funding in this year's Budget for pest control, endangered species and marine reserves.
"The budget for pest and weed control has gone from $35.3 million last year to $40.6 million this year. This is bad news for pests like possums, goats and wasps and good news for endangered species like the kiwi and the kakapo," said Dr Smith.
For protected species and island habitats, funding will increase from $34.4 million in 1997/98 to $35.9 million in 1998/99 and there is $1.125 million for marine reserves, over the next two years, as previously announced.
Announcements will be made in the coming months about exactly how this additional funding will be spent in each conservancy, and on what programmes.