Farmers and communities across the state will continue to receive vital drought assistance with the NSW Nationals in Government providing a $310 million boost to the Emergency Drought Relief Package.

NSW Nationals Member for Myall Lakes Stephen Bromhead said that this crucial funding would ease the financial burden on regional communities caused by the drought.

Mr Bromhead said the region had done it tough, having endured destructive bushfires, a long, hot summer and COVID-19 restrictions, but the NSW Nationals were determined to help farmers make it out of the worst drought in recorded history.

“My message to everyone is that you have not been forgotten and we are determined to continue supporting our regional communities until the drought is well and truly behind us,” Mr Bromhead said.

”This funding boost provides the certainty our communities, small businesses and farmers need to make important stock and business decisions this winter.”

Support available to drought affected comunities and farmers includes:

  • $116 million to continue the Drought Transport subsidy
  • $99 million to continue waiving of Local Land Services rates, bee site permits, Western Lands lease rent, wild dog fence rates and provide assistance for vehicle registration costs for eligible primary producers
  • $28.5 million to continue existing water licence fee waivers for stock, domestic, general and high-security water users
  • Continuation of health and wellbeing programs, including the Farmgate Counsellors program, Aboriginal wellbeing services and Royal Flying Doctors Far West Drought Support programs

Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW John Barilaro said renewing these support measures would go a long way to supporting drought-affected communities get back on their feet.

“I’m all too aware that some of the drought-affected communities feel like they have been forgotten due to the bushfires and COVID-19, and that rain in recent months may have left some people in the city with the impression that the drought is over,” Mr Barilaro said.

“The rain has helped and conditions are easing but we haven’t quite reached the recovery stage yet, which is why the NSW Nationals in Government are again extending these emergency drought measures, taking our total investment to more than $2 billion, to help farmers through winter.”

Primary producers and small businesses already receiving support payments, subsidies, waivers and fee relief from the Emergency Drought Relief Package do not have to reapply.

For a full list of drought support measures, go to: www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/droughthub and www.nsw.gov.au/drought-in-nsw.