The NSW Government last week announced it is making it easier for farmers and their families to access the Drought Transport Subsidies and the Drought Assistance Fund by relaxing the gross off-farm asset test. Parliamentary Secretary for Western NSW Rick Colless said the current criteria is being lifted from a $1 million off-farm assets to $5 million, which means more farmers will now be eligible to access drought assistance.
“This change acknowledges the efforts of farmers who have diversified their assets, but understandably still need help during these tough times,” Mr Colless said. “I am pleased to be part of a Government that stands with our farmers and continues to assess its drought relief package to ensure we are delivering the right support at the right time.”
Mr Colless said criteria for ‘new entrants’ have also been created within the Government’s drought assistance guidelines to support farmers who are new to the industry. “New entrants, including many young farmers, will now have greater access to Government assistance which will be particularly beneficial as they establish their businesses,” Mr Colless said. In addition to amending the access criteria, Mr Colless said the Government is also making it easier for farmers to get help completing and submitting drought support applications, with Local Land Services offices
now providing this assistance.
“Farmers in the region can now visit the Orange LLS office for assistance with preparing and submitting their applications for drought support,” Mr Colless said. “In addition, the Rural Assistance Authority (RAA) is now open until 10 pm weeknights, allowing farmers who have been out in the paddocks all day a greater opportunity to seek support”.
“These changes will ensure farmers can access the support they need and receive their subsidy payments as quickly as possible.” For more information visit www.droughthub.nsw.gov.au