Members of the Serrated Tussock Working Party for NSW and ACT
Peter has been a member of the Working Party since August 2009, and was elected as its President in 2011.
With a Marketing degree and no farming background Peter fled Sydney in 1982 with his wife and daughter and since then has lived on their 200 ha property at Sofala in the Central Tablelands. His interest in public affairs led him to be elected to Evans Shire Council and to Upper Macquarie County Council until Evans was amalgamated with Bathurst City Council.
Now, with a career as a weed spraying contractor since 1987, he has witnessed the spread of serrated tussock and the lack of action in having it suppressed. This has led him to undertake a Masters in GIS and Remote Sensing through Charles Sturt University which he hopes will help establish some baseline information on the true extent of the problem and the its rate of spread. Eventually he hopes to correlate many of the natural and human factors in the spread of tussock so that reliable predictions can be made – with the benefit of factual information as a political and public relations lever.
His wish is that "Serrated Tussock control can be made as 'sexy' as salinity became some years ago."
Stewart Thompson has been a member of the Working Party since 2009 and was elected vice-president in 2011.
Nelson has been a member of the Working Party since it was formed in 2006.
He is a researcher, with a special interest in development and management of science-user interactions in natural resource management and global change, and in developing and working with projects to improve land management. He has been working on issues such as environmental management for the olive industry, and more broadly, the potential role and value of environmental management systems and related arrangements, eg quality assurance programs.
He was a senior Commonwealth public servant for many years, involved in policy analysis, strategic planning, and program development and implementation at local, regional, national and international levels, covering issues such as climate change, forestry, waste management, biodiversity and the maritime environment.
Nelson was Convenor of the Ginninderra Catchment Group for many years and was Chair of the Murrumbidgee Landcare Association. He served on advisory bodies for the ACT government, contributing to, among other things, weed control strategies. He is Chair of Australian Landcare Management System Ltd.
Steve Taylor began his association with the Serrated Tussock Working Party in 2009 when appointed Senior Weed Management Officer with ACT Parks & Conservation Service (ACTPCS). ACTPCS is a corresponding member of the Working Party.
Steve's role in ACT Parks & Conservation Service involves overseeing between $2m and $3m a year of environmental weed control contracts across the ACT and region. Serrated Tussock control uses about 10% of the annual budget. Between 2009 and 2011 Steve has managed the spraying of some 1,229 hectares of serrated tussock in ACT conservation reserves. These infestations ranged in density from scattered plants to dense infestations.
The ACT Parks & Conservation Service uses the NSW DPI Weed Risk Management System to guide its management strategy. Serrated tussock is rated "Very High" weed risk in the ACT and the management strategy is to "Manage Weed and Protect Priority Sites". Priority sites are high conservation values areas such as native grassland and Yellow Box-Red Gum Grassy Woodland.
Alan is a fifth generation farmer on a family farm consisting of 1470 hectares. He operates a grazing enterprise consisting of Beef cattle and Merino sheep.
He has been a member of the Serrated Tussock Working Party since its inception. He became involved because of his frustration with the lack of effective control measures put in place by weed authorities over the past two decades. Alan felt that the Serrated Tussock Working Party was maybe the last opportunity to formulate guidelines for the authorities to utilise in implementing effective control.
With the fifth, sixth and seventh generations residing on the farm and wishing to fulfil his succession plan Alan feels the greatest threat to his future viability is Serrated Tussock
Mitchell is one of the founding members, and is past president of the Serrated Tussock Working Party. He has a strong and active interest in rural issues.
Mitchell owns and operates a 3,000 acre sheep and cattle grazing enterprise near Ilford on the NSW Central Tablelands. His interest in rural issues led him to a range of elected and representative positions including: councillor with Rylstone Shire Council (now Mid-Western Regional Council); district council of NSW Farmers Association; the Central West catchment Management Board and Chairman of the former Mid-Western County Council.
With land neighbouring a significant area of State owned land, he is only too familiar with the problems that can arise when public lands fall outside the legislative and management requirements of private land. Mitchell is a strong advocate for a review of Local Government rating arrangements that would enhance weed control action, with the aim of putting the cost of compliance where continual non-compliance is evident.