1 Aug 2011

Last Wool Board money finally paid to farmers

5:31 am on 1 August 2011

Money owed to 1300 sheep farmers from the former Wool Board has finally been paid out, almost eight years after the board was wound up.

The Wool Board Disestablishment Company has been sitting on almost $7 million remaining from board reserve funds.

It had expected to distribute the money within a year or so of the board's demise, but was delayed by a legal challenge from the Saxmere group, representing specialist wool growers.

Saxmere spent seven years seeking redress in court over decisions the former board made on funding wool marketing programmes.

The case ended when the Supreme Court rejected an application earlier this year for a further appeal.

That left the way clear for DisCo to send the final cheques late last week, either to individual growers or Wool Equities, a farmer-owned company.

DisCo chief executive Roger Buchanan says the total paid was $6.805 million.

Most of it went directly to growers, but about $2.75 million was converted to wool equities.

Mr Buchanan says DisCo will soon pass to Wool Equities with its tax losses as its sole remaining asset.