​More confusion on power poles

16 June 2017

The Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association (TFGA) has expressed concerns that a TasNetworks statement to media yesterday regarding power pole ownership referred to 1954 by-laws of the Hydro Electric Commission (HEC).

TFGA CEO Peter Skillern said that the statement raised more questions than it answered.

“The question still remains around the legislative continuity of these by-laws, and whether in fact they have any effect in law today,” Mr Skillern said.

“For years TasNetworks has told landowners that poles on private land belong to the landowner, with the exception of transformers on private land, which they claim ownership of.

“If we take these so-called by-laws at face value then the transformers should also belong to landowners, not TasNetworks. This is just one more example of the mixed messages and lack of clarity that we have seen in relation to this issue.”

Mr Skillern said that it was time for TasNetworks to stop hiding behind obscure and outdated by-laws.

“We have also been advised today that there is a move to extend easements on farms where high voltage pylons exist without any offer of compensation to the farmers in question, notwithstanding that the easements severely curtail what famers can do on their own land.

“The TFGA will not walk away from this issue and will continue to advocate for the rights of farmers,” he said.

“We encourage any landowners who have had power pole issues to give us a call on (03) 6332 1800 to discuss their situation.”