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Liaison Officers

The NFF has three Liaison Officers on secondment from Australian Government departments to provide services direct to the agriculture sector in the areas of environmental law, biosecurity, and immigration and labour.

Environment Liaison Officer

The NFF has an Environment Liaison Officer on secondment from the federal Department of Environment (formerly known as the Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities).

The Liaison Officer, Jol Taber, provides on-the-ground communication and information to farmers and rural communities about the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (the EPBC Act), and acts as a liaison for farmers to the Department.

If you require information on the EPBC Act or any of the Department's other functions, please contact Jol for assistance.

What can the Environment Liaison Officer do for farmers?
Jol can provide:

  • Free advice and clear explanations regarding the EPBC Act.
  • Practical assistance with aspects of referral, assessment and approval processes and other features of the EPBC Act.
  • Information, such as guides, information sheets and direction to relevant websites to make it easier for farmers to work with the legislation.
  • Information and training about the Department and the EPBC Act to NFF staff, organisations and rural landowners.
  • Assistance with consultative processes, such as comments on nominations for threatened species, ecological communities, key threatening processes and recovery plans under the EPBC Act.
  • Provision of feedback to both the NFF and the Department of Environment about the operation of the EPBC Act.
  • Access to all areas of the Department, including information on funding streams, as well as program and policy areas. If you are unsure who to talk to within the Department on a particular issue, Jol can direct you.
  • Information on the processes and outputs of the Department.

Contact the Environment Liaison Officer:
P: 1800 704 520 (free call, including mobiles)

More information
The following fact sheets provide information for farmers on the EPBC Act (what it covers, what it means for farmers and how to seek an approval) and the Environment Liaison Officer (what Jol can do for you).

Industry Liaison Officer

The NFF has an Industry Liaison Officer on secondment from the federal Department of Agriculture (formerly known as the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, DAFF).

The Liaison Officer position was originally established to focus on biosecurity, as in mid-2012, the Government released the new draft biosecurity legislation - designed to replace the Quarantine Act of 1908 and fulfill many of the reforms recommended through the Beale Review - for public consultation.

The Liaison Officer role has recently been broadened to also include other Departmental policy portfolio issues, and to allow greater liaison between the Department and industry.

If you require information on any of the Department's functions, please contact the Liaison Officer, Daniel Macpherson, for assistance.

Contact the Industry Liaison Officer:
P: 0402 958 812

More information
For more, visit the Department of Agriculture's website.

Immigration Liaison Officer

The NFF has an Immigration Liaison Officer on secondment from the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (formerly known as the Department of Immigration and Citizenship, DIAC).

The Liaison Officer, Servet Brennan, provides expert support to employers who want to employ skilled overseas workers. She provides information to farmers about the Department's programs and options for filling farm labour needs, including temporary and permanent visa options for skilled labour.

The Department offers a number of temporary and permanent visa options and Servet can provide information to help farmers choose the best option to suit their needs.

For example, some farmers may employ Working Holiday Makers (WHM) to fill their temporary labour needs. WHM visa holders can work for the full 12-month duration of their stay in Australia but are limited to a maximum of six months’ work with any one employer.

First time Working Holiday (subclass 417) visa holders who undertake three months’ (88 days) ‘specified work’ in an eligible postcode within regional Australia can acquire eligibility for a second visa. ‘Specified work’ includes (among other things) general maintenance crop work, harvesting and/or packing fruit and vegetable crops and immediate processing of animal products.

Holders of a second Working Holiday visa may return to work for a further six months for any employer with whom they worked while on their first Working Holiday visa. This means that if a farmer employed a first time Working Holiday visa holder for six months, and they successfully obtain a second visa, they can return to work for that farmer for another six months.

If you assistance in filling farm labour needs, or any of the Department's other functions, please contact Servet for assistance.

Contact the Immigration Liaison Officer:
P: 0466 150 022

More information
For more, visit the Employers section of the Department's website.

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