Agriculture Victoria Drought and Dry Seasons Support – Updated July 2020

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The Victorian Government is continuing to provide support for farmers affected by drought and dry season conditions in Central and East Gippsland, the Millewa in north west Victoria and the Goulburn Murray Irrigation District (GMID).

On 24 June 2020, the Minister for Agriculture, Jaclyn Symes, announced several refinements to the drought support program to:

  • support farmers via online technical and decision-making support services
  • provide additional funding to the Rural Financial Counselling Service to allow them to meet increased demand due to seasonal conditions, bushfire and industry adjustment.

You can find more details here.

Existing programs have also been extended until August 28 2020 or until all available funds are allocated – see below for further details.

The On-Farm Drought Resilience Grant Program

The maximum value of the On-Farm Drought Resilience Grant has increased from $5,000 to $10,000 to boost farmers’ access to professional services whilst still enabling farmers to invest in drought preparedness infrastructure. Eligible farm businesses can now apply for:

  • Up to $5,000 for business decision making activities (with no co-contribution required)
  • Up to $5,000 for infrastructure investments (with at least 50 per cent co-contribution required)

There are three new eligible infrastructure investments under the Resilience Grant program:

  • technologies to improve mobile phone connectivity
  • weed control (e.g. purchase of registered herbicide)
  • soil moisture probes (as an explicit investment under soil moisture monitoring activities).

Farmers in drought-affected areas of East Gippsland and Wellington Shires also impacted by the bushfires can reapply for the grant where previously funded investments through the On-Farm Drought Infrastructure Support Grant, Pasture Recovery and Management Grant or the On-Farm Drought Resilience Grant were destroyed or damaged.

The Scheme is available to eligible farm businesses in the following local government areas:

  • Wellington and East Gippsland
  • Far North West Victoria – Millewa ^
  • Goulburn Murray Irrigation District *

^ Eligible dryland farm businesses located in the far north-west corner of Victoria, generally known as the Millewa and surrounding areas. This incorporates the following towns and locality areas in the Mildura Shire: Carwarp, Cullulleraine, Lindsay Point, Meringur, Merrinee, Neds Corner, Wargan and Werrimull.

* Eligible irrigation farm businesses, including those that have transitioned from irrigation production systems to dryland production since 1 July 2018, located in the Goulburn Murray Irrigation District (GMID).

General Information

This program remains open for applications until 28 August 2020 or until the funds have been fully allocated. It is recommended you apply soon to avoid missing out. 

Farm Machinery Improvement Grant 

This program aims to assist eligible farm businesses maintain essential on-farm machinery and equipment to prepare for the 2020 growing season. The funding is to be used for the professional maintenance and repair of machinery and equipment such as: tractors, harvesters, seeders and hay baling equipment. 

The program is open to cropping and grain farmers in the Millewa region of North-West Victoria, with funding available up to $10,000. 

General Information

This program remains open for applications until 28 August 2020 or until the funds have been fully allocated. It is recommended you apply soon to avoid missing out.

The Country Women’s Association of Victoria’s (CWA) Household Financial Relief program

This program provides funding to drought-affected farm businesses and workers in eligible areas to help them meet urgent household expenses. Funding of up to $3,000 is available for expenses such as: residential rates, groceries, school expenses, rent, household bills, and urgent dental and medical care. 

You must be from an eligible area to apply for this funding:

  • Wellington and East Gippsland Shire 
  • Far North-West Victoria — the Millewa 
  • Goulburn Murray Irrigation District

General Information

This program remains open for applications until 28 August 2020 or until the funds have been fully allocated. It is recommended you apply soon to avoid missing out.

For more information about other drought and dry seasonal conditions support from Agriculture Victoria go to agriculture.vic.gov.au/dryseasons or call 136 186 

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