Federal Member for Page Kevin Hogan and State Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis today urged drought-affected farmers in our community to take advantage of the hardship assistance provided by the NSW and Federal Governments.
Both MPs said the new assistance were an entitlement, not a privilege, and that farmers should not be too proud to claim them.
“New South Wales is now 100 per cent in drought, so the billion dollars the NSW Government is providing applies to farmers on the North Coast as much as anywhere else in the State,” Mr Gulaptis said.
“This includes support for transporting hay and stock feed to livestock, which can be a very expensive business.”
Mr Hogan concurred, saying the Federal and State Governments were working together to mitigate the effects of the worst dry in a generation on agricultural families.
“The Nationals in the Federal Government have just improved the existing Farm Household Allowance scheme that will now provide two lump sum supplementary payments worth up to $12,000 for eligible couples and $7200 for singles,” Mr Hogan said.
“This brings the total payment for an eligible couple to around $37,000 and for a single to around $22,000
“We are also increasing the Farm Household Allowance income asset threshold from $2.6 million to $5 million so more farmers can get support.”
“Importantly, we are also investing more than $11 million in mental health programs to help our drought-affected communities.
“This increase in assistance brings the Federal Government’s commitment to farmers in drought to $576 million – and we are not done yet. Managing this drought requires agility and we are continually reviewing our measures.”
Farmers who want to apply for assistance under the NSW package should go to www.raa.nsw.gov.au
Those who need the assistance provided by the Federal Government should
visit the Department of Human Services website to apply online or call the Farmer Assistance Hotline on 132 316 for assistance.