Opinion piece: More support for drought affected farmers in NSW

03 Apr 2014

By Member for New England Barnaby Joyce


3 April 2014


THERE are still many farmers battling drought in New South Wales so the increased rebate for installing water infrastructure to supply their animals with emergency water needs is welcome news.


For farmers doing it tough in NSW this agreement means the maximum claimed under this scheme has now risen from $30,000 to $50,000.


This rebate can cover up to 75 per cent of the cost of purchase, delivery and installation costs of water infrastructure for emergency animal welfare needs—it will make a big difference to primary producers.


The rebate can be used for the purchase and installation of water infrastructure including pipes, tanks, bores, troughs, pumps and delivery and installation costs.


Farmers who have already received the rebate are now eligible for an additional rebate. The additional rebate from the Australian Government will be automatically paid to all approved applications.


Securing water is one of the things people want us to do, to make sure their life is better than it was in the past.


The water future of Barraba has been secured with a pipeline from Split Rock dam. We’re trying to grow this city and it’s really important people understand this when they invest in Tamworth.


We’ve granted two tranches of $10 million to basically assist people in securing water onto their place.


This can be done with bores, dams and pipelines; this is basically assisting people to better deal with the dry times.


I’m very proud of this policy as it creates a legacy, that after the drought is over and the funding is over, their place is a little bit better than what it was.


I know it’s well supported. I know people like it and that’s why we’ve been fighting for further funding to assist in this vital program of water infrastructure.


On a grander scale we will be looking at dam infrastructure and my appointment by the Prime Minister Tony Abbott to chair a committee looking at areas in our electorate and throughout the nation where we can go about the construction of dams.


Australia’s population is expected to reach 35 million by 2050 and we also have to take advantage of the growing wealth of hundreds of millions of people who live close by.


Water is wealth and the storage capacity of water in Australia per capita, is falling and the government must get the country into a position where we won’t be as exposed to dry periods as we have seen lately.


If farmers have any concerns they should contact the NSW Rural Assistance Authority for more information and advice on their eligibility on 6391 3000.



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