Producers, farm workers and farm contractors and suppliers can now apply for a one-off $3000 payment through the Nationals in Government’s Drought Communities Support Initiative.

Nationals Member for Cowper Pat Conaghan said the Commonwealth had topped up funding for the program by $82.75 million last month and now the charity dispensing the payments had been decided.

“It is fair our farmers and farm-reliant businesses in the Kempsey local government area (LGA) receive this extra assistance as they have been doing it tough,” Mr Conaghan said.

“St Vincent de Paul Society is administering the one-off payments and farmers, farm workers and farm contractors and suppliers can now apply via this charity’s website or by calling its head office on 1300 846 643.

“I encourage all farmers and farm suppliers that experienced an impact from the drought to make an application.”

Nationals Deputy Leader and Drought Minister David Littleproud extended the Drought Communities Support Initiative to a further 52 LGAs in February to support an additional 10,000 farming families.

“The payment is on top of programs such as the Farm Household Allowance which provides up to $118,000 to families in drought,” Mr Littleproud said.

“The payment of up to $3000 helps to put food on the table and fuel in the family car and is an investment in hard-working Australians still recovering from the drought.

“St Vincent de Paul Society is one of two charities running the program and it is responsible for the simple assessment process and making the payment.”

The Nationals in Government are also providing additional support for people and families coming off the four year Farm Household Allowance (FHA). Those who are finishing up their time on FHA will receive a one off relief payment which is equivalent to a further six months on FHA. FHA recipients will receive an additional $550 a fortnight through the coronavirus economic plan as well.