Drought Relief and Assistance programs
Australian state governments have a few grants in place to help the drought effected businesses as well as individual property owners. Most of these grants come in the form of rebates and subsidies. In this section, we will discuss some of the grants and rebates offered by the Australian stae governments to provide relief to the drought effected businesses and farmers.
One of the drought relief programs sponsored by the Australian State Government aims at helping the primary producers in the livestock industry who are in drought-declared areas or who have individually droughted property (IDP) declarations.
The scheme provides five assistance measures:
- Drought-declared properties may be eligible for:
- transporting fodder
- transporting water
The program provides a rebate on the purchase and installation of water infrastructure purchased for animal welfare needs. It addresses immediate animal welfare needs, helps improve properties to be more drought resilient, and generally lifts productivity by providing water supply to areas where pasture was less than fully utilised.
- Properties that have had their drought declaration revoked may be eligible for:
- Freight subsidies for transporting livestock
Eligible applicants may receive up to 100% of the freight costs for breeding stock returning from agistment and up to 75% of freight costs for animals purchased for restocking, for up to two years after the date of revocation. The maximum level of financial assistance available under this program is initially $20,000 per property per financial year. They can apply to extend the limit up to $50,000 depending on the length of time their property has been in drought. This program is open on an ongoing basis.
State Government Assistance – Drought Relief
Another program funded by an Australian state government aims to provide funds to help farmers effected in drought impact areas within the state. These grants are available for farmers as well as farming businesses that are drought affected and dependent on farming as their primary source of income.
Grants of up to $3,000 are available per individual applicant and/or household. An individual applicant and/or household may apply more than once, provided that they have not already reached the maximum $3,000.
- Farmers or farming dependent businesses
- A farming dependent family
In addition, applicants must also prove the following:
- They must be located in an area that is identified as being in drought, according to the laws of the state
- They should only be relying on farming or farming related activities for the majority of their income
- Must provide an evidence that their primary source of income has suffered as a direct result of drought
One more state government funded program aims at providing relief from supply charges on electricity accounts that are used to pump water for farm or irrigation purposes. A declaration of drought must be made under the State government’s administrative process to be eligible for this grant. Under this grant, applicants can claim:
- Relief from electricity charges
- Reimbursement of supply charge components and minimum payments (but exclude minimum demand charges)
- Applicant should be a retail entity
- Applicant should be a farmer of a property that has been individually drought declared or
- Applicant should have no water to pump
Above mentioned grants are only some of the many incentives that the State governments provide to farmers and businesses in drought affected areas. To know more about such grants please speak to one of our advisors today.