ELEANOR HALL: The head of the Murray-Darling Basin Authority today put the release of the draft Plan for the future of the Basin on hold again. The report was due to be released this week and was set to go to Parliament at the beginning of next year, but the Authority issued a statement today that further work is needed on how to implement the Plan and that the release date is now October at the earliest.
NANCE HAXTON: Senator Simon Birmingham says the delay puts at risk legislative timelines that have to be met.
SIMON BIRMINGHAM: The concern is that it’s not just this one delay. This is one of many delays and these delays have gone on and on and on. There are certain timelines in the legislation for the implementation of local water sharing plans that may not be met as a result of this latest delay. It now looks like we’ll only get a draft Plan late this year and that probably means we won’t get a final Plan until late next year or possibly even the year after and that will make it basically impossible for some of the states to meet what appear to be legislative obligations.
ELEANOR HALL: That’s Liberal Senator Simon Birmingham ending Nance Haxton’s report.