More farmers across north-east Victoria will be able to build more drought proofing infrastructure thanks to another $50 million for the On-farm Emergency Water Infrastructure Rebate Scheme.
Wodonga-based Nationals Senate leader and Nationals Senator Bridget McKenzie said the $25,000 rebate scheme offers practical support to farmers cope with drought such as drilling new bores, desilting dams and more piping for livestock producers and horticulturalists with permanent plantings.
“It provides much needed assistance to improve risk management as well as productivity and profitability,” she said.
“While recent rains are a cause for optimism, the Nationals in government understands that recovering from drought can take years rather than months.
“This rebate is valuable because it helps farmers manage the here and now when it comes to keeping livestock watered and permanent plantings alive. It’s even more valuable because the infrastructure investment means they are more productive and better prepared for the next inevitable drought in years to come.”
The Minister for Resources, Water and Northern Australia Keith Pitt said the government had made the additional $50 million available this financial year so farmers could maintain animal welfare, keep trees and vines alive – and emerge from drought with better tools to help them drive profitability and productivity.
“This investment in our farmers provides rebates of up to 25 per cent of eligible infrastructure costs, capped at $25,000,” he said.
“Across the country there are currently more than 2000 applications that will miss out on funding if we didn’t make this additional funding available, because the scheme is over subscribed. Many of my colleagues, federal counterparts and farmers, have been clear they’d like the scheme extended – and we’re delivering that.
“My intention is to make this support work even harder by partnering with the states and territories who must match the Commonwealth funding for eligible on-farm water infrastructure projects.”
For more information about the On-farm Emergency Water Infrastructure Rebate Scheme visit the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment’s website.