Vegetable industry welcomes Federal support for flood-affected growers
AUSVEG has welcomed the Federal Government’s decision today to extend the eligibility of Category C assistance under the National Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA) to additional flood-affected areas of Queensland.
“This is a huge relief for vegetable growers in the Scenic Rim, Gladstone and South Burnett shires who are now eligible for relief grants of up to $25,000,” said AUSVEG Spokesperson, Hugh Gurney.
“We applaud the efforts and cooperation of the Federal, State and Local Governments in extending these flood relief packages to those that need them,” said Mr Gurney.
AUSVEG is the National Peak Industry Body for Australia’s 9,000 vegetable and potato growers.
“It is great to see that the Federal Government has recognised the extent of the damage across Queensland. Parts of the Banana, Goondiwindi, Ipswich, Somerset, Southern Downs and Toowoomba regions have also been made eligible for Category C funding,” said Mr Gurney.
Last month, ex-cyclone Oswald left a trail of destruction across Queensland and northern New South Wales with a damage bill that is expected to lie in the millions of dollars.
The extension follows feedback from industry about severely impacted regions of the state that were initially overlooked for disaster relief, however, some flood-affected areas still require more.
“In regions where supplementary assistance is clearly needed, the Government must extend Category D relief funding to allow primary producers and small businesses to get back on their feet as soon as possible.”
“Some growers have said that the Oswald flood event was significantly worse than that of 2010-11, and the damage is going to be felt for many generations to come,” said Mr Gurney.
In addition to government-funded relief, the Australian public also can do their bit to contribute to the flood recovery process.
“Everyday Australians can also assist our growers by eating more Australian-grown, fresh vegetables. You will not only be doing yourself a favour, but you will also aid hundreds of affected farmers with their recovery operations.”
“The vegetable industry is highly resilient and will undoubtedly recover from these hardships, but community support makes the process a whole lot easier for growers,” said Mr Gurney.
Those who have been affected by the floods can obtain assistance from the Queensland Government’s Community Recovery Hotline, which can be reached on 1800 173 349.
MEDIA CONTACT: Hugh Gurney, Spokesperson, AUSVEG
Phone: (03) 9822 0388 Mobile: 0410 047 432 E-mail: email@example.com