STATE Mining and Energy Minister Dan van Holst Pellekaan says despite the concerns being expressed by many farming groups, legislation to change the Mining Act 1971 actually increased farmers' rights, while promoting further investment in regional areas.
He pointed to benefits, such as a 500 per cent increase in the money available to landholders to gain legal advice when approached by mining companies from $500 to $2500, increasing the minimum distance between high impact operations and homes from 400 metres to 600m, and guaranteed payments to landowners with new powers to recover unpaid rent from mining companies.
But SA-Best MLC Frank Pangallo said the financial support offered for legal advice was grossly inadequate.
"The mining company can tie up the farmer in court for years and run them into the ground financially," he said.
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