Cash payments from federal government available to ease drought burden

Member for Parkes Mark Coulton hosted Minister for Agriculture, Senator Bridget McKenzie in the Parkes electorate earlier this month to highlight the ongoing impacts of the drought.
Member for Parkes Mark Coulton hosted Minister for Agriculture, Senator Bridget McKenzie in the Parkes electorate earlier this month to highlight the ongoing impacts of the drought.

Farmers and contractors across the Parkes electorate can now apply to access one-off payments of $3,000 thanks to the coalition government's Drought Community Support Initiative (DCSI).

Federal Member for Parkes Mark Coulton said the payments would provide immediate relief and ease some of the burden being experienced by local communities due to the drought.

"Registrations are now open for farmers, farm workers, contractors and suppliers in my electorate through the Drought Community Support Initiative," he said.

"There is no silver bullet approach to drought relief, but these cash payments will ease the pressure on farmers and others as the drought conditions continue."

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Mr Coulton said the payments would help to cover day-to-day living costs such as groceries, vehicle maintenance, energy and utility bills, or medical expenses.

"The government invested more than $30 million in Round One of this program, providing up to $3,000 in financial assistance to farming households, and I'm pleased the DCSI is delivering again," he said.

"This is on top of the government's suite of measures, including the Farm Household Allowance, to assist farming communities during times of hardship.

"This money will be delivered in partnership with the St. Vincent de Paul Society and the Salvation Army who have done an outstanding job supporting communities across the Parkes electorate."

In September 2019, the coalition government announced it would provide $33 million to resume the DCSI. The funding will provide up to $3,000 in immediate financial assistance to eligible farming households facing hardship due to drought, and provide much-needed stimulus to local businesses.

Applications should be made through one of the following charities:

For program guidelines and a full list of eligible local government areas, visit www.business.gov.au/assistance/drought-community-support-initiative