Emergency aid and funding will be made available to the Sunshine Coast and Moreton Bay shires after 79 per cent of Queensland was declared in drought, the largest area ever recorded.
Member for Glass House, Andrew Powell MP, said producers in need could apply for the Queensland Government’s Drought Relief Assistance Scheme as well as the Federal Government’s Interim Farm Household Allowance.
“Our drought relief assistance includes freight subsidies and emergency water infrastructure rebates, as well as leasehold land rent rebates and water licence fee relief,” Mr Powell said.
“I encourage local producers in the Sunshine Coast and Moreton Bay regions to contact DAFF to apply for assistance.
“Producers should contact DAFF on 13 25 23 for application forms and further information.
“Income support through the Federal Government’s farm allowance is also available by contacting Centrelink on 13 23 16.
“The allowance will help with daily living expenses like putting food on the table and paying their electricity bills.”
Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, John McVeigh, said the drought now extended all the way to the coast, including some areas devastated 13 months ago by record flooding and was now pressing on the northern suburbs of Brisbane.
“The number of local government areas drought declared is now 38, plus four partially declared shires, increasing the area of Queensland that is drought declared to 79 per cent,” Mr McVeigh said.
“There are also 38 Individually Droughted Properties (IDPs) in another seven shires, and this number will continue to rise.
“The wet season in these newly declared shires has been very poor with many areas missing out altogether.”
-ENDS 10 March 2014