National Farmers Federation Chief Executive Tony Mahar said the announcement of new jointly-funded federal and state Government grants to help agriculture rebuild after November’s flood events was good news for farmers.
NSW and Queensland farmers can now apply for grants of up to $50,000 to salvage damaged crops and stock, rebuild fences and replace machinery. The grants are immediately available to farmers in LGAs which were disaster-declared after the severe flooding.
“This assistance will be a welcomed step forward in the recovery of those farm businesses affected. For some, the damage sustained tallied in the millions of dollars from lost crops and destroyed infrastructure,” Mr Mahar said.
“The NFF urges all farmers who suffered losses to apply to access this leg-up in the rebuilding and restocking process.
“It’s been an extended tough time for many farmers in the flood-affected areas, who have also had to contend with a mice plague and drought.
“The NFF acknowledges the commitment of Federal Emergency Management & National Recovery and Resilience Minister, Senator Bridget McKenzie and her collaboration with the NSW and Queensland Governments to make this support available immediately,” Mr Mahar said.
“We expect the paperwork and red tape for these grants will be minimal and that the grant money will reach farmers as soon as possible. It’s critical that farmers can quickly replace the machinery and infrastructure needed to return to normal operations.
“It’s also crucial that all levels of government work together as a matter of priority to repair affected public infrastructure including roads and bridges. Farmers’ productivity simply cannot be further impeded by delays to these works.”
The grants are administered at a state level: To apply NSW farmers should contact the Rural Assistance Authority www.raa.nsw.gov.au or 1300 678 593. To apply Queensland farmers should contact the Queensland Rural and Industry Development Authority www.qrida.qld.gov.au or 1800 623 946.