Thursday, April 25, 2024

Drought relief extended to Canty, Otago

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Ambit widens of medium-scale adverse event classification.
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The medium-scale adverse event classification in place for the Marlborough, Nelson, and Tasman districts has been expanded to cover Canterbury and Otago.

Agriculture Minister Todd McClay said the decision to unlock additional support for farmers and growers across the Canterbury and Otago regions was made as the intense dry spell persists and looks unlikely to improve in the short term.

The classification provides support for farmers and growers, including tax relief, and it enables the Ministry of Social Development to consider Rural Assistance Payments.

“I met with farmers in South Marlborough earlier this week to see conditions on the ground first-hand. They told me the classification makes a difference, enabling them to access further support,” McClay said.

“Up to $70,000 will be provided to Rural Support Trusts in North, Mid, and South Canterbury and Otago to facilitate community and one-on-one support for affected farmers and growers.

“It comes on top of the $20,000 allocated to Top of the South Rural Support Trust last month to ensure early support was available.”

Rural Communities Minister Mark Patterson visited the affected regions recently to meet farmers, growers, and sector groups, and discuss the challenging weather conditions.

“The dry conditions have affected some fodder crop yields and farmers have already been feeding out winter supplementary feed to livestock,” Patterson said.

Rain over the weekend in parts of Canterbury and Otago failed to deliver any significant relief to parched soils, he said.

Farmers and growers who require support are encouraged to contact their local Rural Support Trust on 0800 787 254.

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