Australian Government and State Government assistance packages
The Australian Government and State Governments with regions affected by dry conditions, have made assistance packages available to farmers, listed here nationally and by state.
Australian Government assistance
The Australian Government has a number of assistance programs available to farmers. For more information, visit supporting farmers and rural communities.
A list of key drought assistance contacts within the Australian Government, as well as for each State and Territory, is available here: Drought assistance contacts.
Regional Investment Corporation
Provides drought loans of up to $1 million for farm business owners affected by drought, or who want to prepare for drought.
More info: Drought loans
Farm Household Allowance
The Farm Household Allowance provides up to four cumulative years of support for eligible farmers and farmers’ partners experiencing financial hardship. This package includes the opportunity to undertake a Farm Financial Assessment, Financial Improvement Agreement and additional activity supplements of up to $4,000.
More info: Farm Household Allowance
Rural Financial Counselling Service
Provides free financial counselling to farmers who are suffering financial hardship.
More info: Rural Financial Counselling Service
Managing weeds and pest animals
Provides funding to help manage the effects of pest animals and weeds in drought-affected areas.
More info: Pest and weed management
Managing Farm Risk Program
Provides one-off rebates of up to $2,500 (including GST) for advice and assessments to help farmers prepare and apply for a new insurance policy.
More info: Managing Farm Risk Program
Provides assistance for drought-affected taxpayers across regional, rural and metropolitan areas to manage their tax.
More info: ATO Drought help
NSW Government assistance
The NSW Government has created DroughtHub, an online one-stop-shop to assist farmers in navigating their Emergency Drought Relief Package.
More info: DroughtHub
At DroughtHub the NSW assistance programs include:
- Emergency Drought Relief Package
- Transport and animal welfare
- Management information
- Skills and training
It also includes latest NSW drought maps, research and development and case studies.
Queensland Government assistance
The Queensland Government provides drought assistance for primary producers such as dairy farmers, for more information visit Drought assistance for primary producers.
Drought Relief Assistance scheme (DRAS)
Provides $20,000 per financial year (or $30,000 with an endorsed drought management plan by the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries) for fodder freight, water freight, and emergency water infrastructure purchase and installation.
After a drought declaration has been revoked you may also be eligible for a livestock transport subsidy for animals purchased for restocking or livestock returning from agistment.
More info: Drought Relief Assistance Scheme
Electricity Charges Scheme
Provides waived or reimbursed supply charges used to pump water for farm or irrigation purposes.
More info: Drought Relief from Electricity Charges Scheme
Land rent rebates
Provides rural lease holders where rent is more than $235 with a 12% rebate.
More info: Drought assistance land rent rebate
Water license waivers
Means annual water licence fees or new water licence applications for stock or domestic use may be waived.
More info: Other drought rebates and fee relief
Counselling services for drought-affected communities
Provides support from professional financial counsellors and mental health services.
More info: Counselling services for drought-affected communities
Victorian Government assistance
The Victorian Government supports Victorian dairy farmers to prepare and respond to drought. This includes technical, financial and personal support, for more information visit Drought support.
Farm Debt Mediation
Makes it compulsory for banks and other creditors to offer mediation to Victorian farmers before commencing debt recovery proceedings on farm mortgages.
More info: Farm Debt Mediation Scheme