The Tasmanian Government has announced the following drought measures to support Tasmanian agriculture. Further details on each measure will be released shortly.
Rural Relief Fund
$150,000 to the Rural Relief Fund (RRF) to assist with direct household and farm business expenses for those in hardship due to drought. The RRF is administered by Rural Business Tasmania
Tasmanian Fodder Register
$20,000 for the Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association (TFGA) to upgrade the Tasmanian Fodder Register
to accommodate agistment and to deliver drought community support events over 12-months.
$80,000 for Rural Alive and Well
(RAW) to extend outreach services to drought affected communities over 12 months.
On-Farm Drought Preparedness and Management
$150,000 through the Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture (TIA) to assist drought affected farmers with:
- in-drought grazing, pasture and livestock management strategies, and
- farm planning and practical tools for post-drought rebuilding of farm productivity in a changing climate.
Drought Weed Management Support
Targeted drought weed management support from the $5 million Tasmanian Weed Action Fund
in consultation with the Chair of the Weed Action Fund (Weed Advocate). Targeted funding will be delivered to drought affected areas to manage key weeds species in the coming season, and importantly post-drought.
Water Management Strategies
DPIPWE workshops and practical support with on-farm and catchment-wide water management strategies, including proactive assistance to farmers with licensing issues, dam works considerations and district wide cooperative arrangements on sharing available irrigation water.
Farmers experiencing financial hardship due to drought are also encouraged to apply for Federal drought assistance, which includes:
- The Regional Investment Corporation can provide low-interest Drought Loans of up to $2 million to farmers in need of financial help. These 10-year loans can be used to help farms prepare for, manage and recover from the effects of drought, including refinancing.
- The Farm Household Allowance is available to help with household expenses by providing fortnightly payments, and potentially up to $1,500 for a financial assessment of the farm business, and up to $4,000 to pay for professional advice and training.
- The On-Farm Emergency Water Infrastructure Rebate Scheme can fund a quarter of the cost of new on-farm infrastructure to provide water for livestock and de-silt dams, up to a maximum rebate of $25,000 per applicant.
- The Drought Communities Programme provided $1 million each to the Break O’Day and Glamorgan-Spring Bay councils for local infrastructure projects and other drought-relief activities that will boost local employment and procurement, and address social and community needs.