The failure of ForestrySA to properly negotiate with a Jamestown-based sawmill and make a choice
to withdraw the supply of timber to them from the Adelaide Hills has put 75 regional jobs at risk and
has become a matter of huge concern to Member for Frome Geoff Brock MP.
Mr Brock said he is calling on the State Government and ForestrySA to take a sensible long-term
approach to this current tender process which is penalising South Australian’s in favour of overeseas
or interstate interests.
“I cannot, for the life of me, understand why our own State government would work so hard to deny
a future to regional families and communities. It’s time we worked to support South Australians instead
of hindering them and causing undue hardship
“This is an ethical and moral issue and should be rectified immediately,” Mr Brock said.
Mr Brock fears for the health of a community which has spent decades relying on the timber mill as
a major employer.
“We are looking at the livelihood of families in a region which has already suffered fires, floods and
droughts,” Mr Brock said.
“The logging industry has been a local mainstay and to suggest that they could negotiate the supply
of timber from Kangaroo Island is ludicrous – the cost of freight to carry the log across the sea and
then by road to Jamestown will affect the viability of this family-owned business and will likely make
Morgan Sawmill in Jamestown owns Wirrabara Forest and has also sourced timber from Bundaleer
Forest, but as a result of bushfires in the past decade, the sawmill has been working to sustain these
resources by acquiring additional logs from the Adeliade Hills through Forestry SA.
“The Morgan Sawmill has been operating for more than 60 years and they have been loyal ForestrySA
customers for 35 years, and have always paid their bills on time,” Mr Brock said.
“For the first time in their relationship they were required to submit a tender for the log on the open
market, with no consultation – and they were unsuccessful.”
ForestrySA is owned by the State and have a charter requiring them to give precedence to local
“However, I believe one of the issues facing the Jamestown sawmill has been in trying to access
supplies, as much of the timber was being sold off to China.”
Despite meeting with SA Liberal Party MPs, Primary Industries Minister David Basham and Energy
Minister Dan van Holst Pellekaan last week, I am given to understand that Morgan Sawmill Owner,
Luke Morgan says his business is still facing closure.