NSW Government announces extra $500m in drought assistance for struggling farmers

NSW Government announces extra $500m in drought assistance for struggling farmers

10 August 2018

Premier Gladys Berejiklian recently announced an additional $500 million in emergency funding to help drought-affected farmers.

Mrs Berejiklian said the additional funding will help farmers who have faced an "unforgivably dry winter".

The three major elements of the $500 million NSW Emergency Drought Relief Package are:

  • $190 million for Drought Transport Subsidies
  • $100 million for cutting the cost of farming fees and charges – by waiving Local Land Services rates, waiving fixed water charges in rural and regional areas, and waiving class one agricultural vehicle registration costs
  • $150 million to bolster the Farm Innovation Fund (FIF) infrastructure program by waiving refunding interest charges on all existing loans for the 2017/18 and 2018/19

The package also includes funding for counselling and mental health services, drought-related road upgrades and animal welfare and stock disposal.

Drought Transport Subsidies

  • Up to $20,000 available per eligible farm business
  • Covers 50% of the full cost of freight up to a maximum of $5 per km and 1,500 per journey, so the maximum subsidy per journey is $3,750
  • The subsidy can be applied for the cost of transporting fodder, water to a property for stock, stock to and from agistment, and stock to sale or slaughter
  • Backdated for freight expenses incurred since 1 January 2018

To be eligible, primary producers must demonstrate that:

  • They are the owner and operator of a farm business in NSW
  • The business operates as a sole trader, partnership, trust or private company and trades agricultural products. The business is registered with the Australian Taxation Office as a primary producer, and have an Australian Business Number (ABN).
  • The owners and operators of the business earn more than 50% of their gross income from the primary production enterprise under normal seasonal circumstances.
  • The business is being negatively impacted by drought conditions.
  • The owners and operators of the business do not have gross off-farm assets exceeding $1,000,000 (excluding funds in a registered superannuation fund).
  • Payments will be made on receipt of eligible tax invoices.

For more information on the package go to, or speak to your local Boyce accountant.

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