Queensland farmers peak body AgForce said money was needed to maintain the state's stock routes with no end to the drought in sight and producers looking to find grass and water for hungry cattle.
AgForce is recommending the travel and agistment permit fees charged by local councils be increased to provide adequate funding for maintenance.
AgForce Cattle Board director and Cloncurry grazier Peter Hall said that access fees covered just four per cent of the costs of maintaining the network - the shortfall met by local councils.
"This is clearly unsatisfactory and unsustainable. It places an unfair impost on councils and general ratepayers," Mr Hall said.
"AgForce is pushing strongly for a system in which the stock route network pays for itself via user access costs."
Mr Hall said this was not about raising fees to prevent access to the network.
"This is about ensuring fees are fair and reasonable to maintain the network for generations to come," he said.
"The current fees were set decades ago and are so low that they encourage poor behaviour and misuse of the stock routes merely for grazing rather than for the intended purpose of transit.
"They don't allow local governments to recoup the actual costs associated with managing the network, let alone undertaking remediation or improvements."
Currently Queensland government fees are set to 2c per km per 20 head or part of 20 head for cattle or other large stock and 2c per km per 100 head or part of 100 head for small stock such as sheep or goats.
Meanwhile local government permits cost between $1.18 and$ 2.85 a head for cattle and 11-45c
AgForce, the Local Government Association of Queensland and drovers are participating in a Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy review of the stock route fees and strategy.
The DNRME held workshops in Longreach, Roma, Emerald and Kingaroy with the recommendations from these events being considered at a final workshop in Brisbane.
"We commend the collaborative and consultative approach DNRME have taken to review the Stock Route Management Regulation 2003 and the Stock Route Network Strategy," Mr Hall said.
The workshops reached general agreement that major stock routes should primarily be managed for travelling stock, further guidance provided to users as to when slow moving stock are permitted on the network, travel and agistment permit fees should be increased, application fees should be charged for travelling stock and agistment and directed back into the network.
Mr Hall said Queensland's stock route network was an amazing and unique asset which needed to be protected.
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