The Spin

 

This is the corporate art of twisting reality so that facts are spun around to look completely the opposite of what the public see.  At best it confuses the audience and at worst it convinces them that up is down.

“We can log National Estate forests and still maintain their values”, is a classic.

Our governments now employ more media spin doctors than advisors. They think it’s more important to con the voters rather than do the right thing by them.

VicForests and the logging industry have used the spin technique for decades.

This section helps you see right through it. 

Hollow effort VicForests

29 November 2015

In the 50 years since Leadbeaters possum was rediscovered, logging has destroyed more than 50% of the forests that were the possums habitat. Leadbeaters possum now lives in an area in the Central Highlands that has about 25 million trees.

In their latest cynical publicity stunt, Vicforests have created artificial hollows in 78 of these trees or 0.0003% of the trees in the LBP habitat area.

VicForests' dividend - the truth!

13 November 2015

invoice to VicForests from the Victorian public 2015

View invoice (PDF) here

Opening VicForests 2014 - 2015 Annual Report, the corporation's chairman, Gordon Davies, makes the proud assertion that "These results have enabled us to pay increasing dividends to the Government, providing a financial return to the people of Victoria in addition to all of the social benefits the native timber industry provides". This is reinforced by a similar claim in the CEO's Report, "Our ongoing positive financial position has enabled us to pay dividends to our shareholder, the Treasurer - $250,000 based on the 2012-13 results, $765,000 on the 2013-14 results and a proposed $1.5 million based on this year’s results". 

In case anybody has missed it, "Payment of a dividend of $765,000 based on 2013-14 results", is reiterated as a 'Highlight' of the Annual Report. 

These misleading claims appear to be deliberately repeated in order to imply that a dividend was paid during the reporting year.

VicForests – 11 years of loss-loss

13 November 2015

VicForests is crowing that this 2014/15 year, it made a profit of $4.68 million.

And for the first time in eight years, a dividend of $765 000 was paid to the people of Victoria via the Treasurer and VicForests is still thinking about paying last year’s owed dividend of $1.5 million. Whether we’ll see it is another thing. On a backlogged debt of $60 million, it’s a start. VicForests claims it’s paid a return to Victorian’s of $5 million (in 2006 and 2007). $5 million represents a very small recompense to the state for $871 million worth of publicly owned wood pulp and timber from our native forests.

What underlies the Minister’s lies?

3 September 2015

Minister Jaala Pulford is responsible for VicForests. She’s been caught with her pants on fire again trying to cover for it in reply to a question from Greens MP Sam Dunn in early September.

She asked about ‎VicForests’ self-allocation of an additional 316 new stands of forest in Victoria to be clearfelled. The Minister said it was OK because the same number of hectares was also removed off logging maps. What she didn't say was that most of those coupes VicForests had already clearfelled and were now handing back to DELWP to manage!

Is VicForests Critically endangered?

15 April 2015

In early April, VicForests decided to move from Healesville to a cheap prefab in Woori Yallock. They’ll take 30 staff there including some from Melbourne. They’ve been cutting corners and fat to save money for ages and this is the latest move – cheaper rent in Woori Yallock than Bourke St.

CEO, Robert Green said the move would be “…contributing to the local economy”, and he said there was space enough to expand their staff. Funny, as they’ve been contracting ever since 2004.  They move into their new office in July or August.

Creative accounting – VicForests style

9 April 2015

Paper profits for political appearances Cooking the books cartoon

VicForests Annual Report for 2014 is now available here and they are claiming a profit of $3.4 million this year, but this claimed profit is a mirage, created for political reasons.

$2.6m seems to have been generated (on paper at least) by re-valuing "forestry assets", see Note 3c, p.42

Another $1.1m is gained in reduced Road access fees (payable to DEPI/DELWP). Given the volume of timber carted is almost identical to the previous year, it is not clear why this fee would be reduced. Possibly to help a loss making government entity look healthy and profitable.

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