FEDERAL Member for New England and Minister for Agriculture Barnaby Joyce said today’s announcement regarding federal assistance will enable small businesses and farms across New England to manage the tough conditions brought about by the current dry spell.
Minister Joyce was joined by the Prime Minister Tony Abbott to release the details of the announcement.
Mr Joyce said more than 6000 agricultural businesses in the New England Electorate could benefit from the Federal Government announcement.
“This new package will assist impacted farm businesses and farm families to deal with immediate financial pressures and improve their capacity to recover when the rain finally comes,” Mr Joyce said.
“We are introducing measures to offer financial, social and mental health support,” he said
“We are acting at the speed of 1000 gazelles.”
Mr Joyce said there are more than 4.6 million hectares of land mainly used for agriculture in the New England electorate and a large proportion has been impacted by the dry conditions.
“This package is about making sure we maintain the dignity of those households that are feeding and carting water for their stock.
“Even though some areas of the New England electorate got a bit of rain recently, these dry conditions are not over,” Mr Joyce said.
He said families in small business and on farms had power and phone bills to be paid.
“And with no cash flow any help would make a great deal of difference,” he said.