Early dry classified as medium-scale adverse event

Minister for Agriculture and Rural Communities Damien O’Connor today announced the fast-growing drought in parts of the lower North Island would be classified as a medium-scale adverse event.

Published on Saturday, December 23, 2017

https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/early-dry-declared-adverse-event

Minister for Agriculture and Rural Communities Damien O’Connor today announced the fast-growing drought in parts of the lower North Island would be classified as a medium-scale adverse event. 

The affected areas include Taranaki region and western parts of the Manawatu-Whanganui and Wellington regions.  

“Yesterday, regional leaders in Taranaki asked for support for the primary sector. Announcing a medium-scale adverse event triggers additional Government support for farmers and growers in affected areas,” says Mr O’Connor.

The community highlighted concerns about the welfare of Taranaki farmers and their livestock, due to a dwindling supply of supplementary feed on the back of a wet winter and spring.

The classification gives Rural Support Trusts a $160,000 funding boost to help serve their communities, such as organising local events, arranging recovery facilitators who work one-to-one with farmers, and recovery coordination to ensure everyone’s on the same page. This funding may be increased if needed.

Other usual recovery measures, which may include tax flexibility and income assistance options, will be made available as appropriate in the New Year. 

The Ministry for Primary Industries will continue to monitor the conditions across other dry areas. Farmers and growers are urged to contact their Rural Support Trust for advice.

Mr O’Connor will be in Taranaki visiting farmers today. 

Questions and answers

How do farmers get in touch with a Rural Support Trust?
Phone 0800 787 254 or go to www.rural-support.org.nz

What are the affected areas?
13 districts across 3 regions

Region: Taranaki
•    New Plymouth
•    Stratford
•    South Taranaki

Region: Manawatu-Whanganui
•    Rangitikei
•    Whanganui
•    Manawatu
•    Palmerston North 
•    Horowhenua

Region: Wellington
•    Kapiti Coast
•    Upper Hutt
•    Lower Hutt
•    Porirua
•    Wellington

What are the criteria for declaring a medium-scale adverse event?
There are three levels of ‘adverse events’ – localised, medium and large-scale. These can cover events like droughts, floods, fire, earthquakes and other natural disasters.
The criteria for assessing the scale of an adverse event are:
•    Options available for the community to prepare for and recover from the event;  
•    Magnitude of the event (likelihood and scale of physical impact), and;
•    Capacity of the community to cope economically and socially.

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News & Alerts

Drought tax relief measures

Tax relief and support measures extended to farmers in medium-scale drought areas

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Author: Terri Anderson

https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/tax-relief-drought-affected-farmers

https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/further-support-struggling-farmers.

 

Detail of what may be available can be found on the Work and Income drought page: https://www.workandincome.govt.nz/eligibility/emergencies/rural-assistance-lower-north-island-and-west-coast-drought-2018.html including Rural Assistance Payments.

Please share this information and encourage farmers in affected areas to talk to their accountants and advisors.

Share with your rural professional contacts so they are aware of the current challenges due to poor spring and dry early summer. Farmers and families may benefit from help revising their budgets. Some who are badly affected - particularly lower-order sharemilkers and contract milkers - may be eligible for entitlements such as Working for Families https://www.workingforfamilies.govt.nz/ so your help to make their accountants / advisors aware is appreciated.

Your local Rural Support Trust is available and Federated Farmers' Feedline is open to both memb ers and non-members: https://www.fedfarm.org.nz/FFPublic/Adverse_Events_Farmer_Support_and_Feedline.aspx

MPI, DairyNZ and B+L NZ also have good information for getting through droughts and dry weather.

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Drought classification extends to Grey and Buller

https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/drought-classification-extends-grey-and-buller

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Author: Terri Anderson

Minister for Agriculture and Rural Communities Damien O’Connor has extended the medium-scale adverse event classification to the drought-hit Grey and Buller districts of the South Island’s West Coast.

These are the first South Island additions to the medium-scale event, which was announced for regions of the lower North Island just before Christmas.

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