Drought assistance

Drought assistance

15 April 2016

14 April 2016

MS RYAN — Food and fibre producers across the Euroa electorate are facing significant challenges as a result of low rainfall. Rainfall data from right across the electorate shows we are now in a 1-in-20-year rainfall deficit. The government's focus has been on the west of the state, but it now needs to consider extending drought support to parts of central Victoria.

I would like to invite the Minister for Agriculture to join me to visit farmers in my region to see firsthand the pressures people are currently under. Just this morning I was contacted by a farmer from Colbinabbin, who feels seasonal conditions have not been this bad since the drought of 1982. Farmers there are carting water and are looking for funding to build a pipeline to give them a water supply.

At Caniambo a number of farmers are on bore water and are carting water for stock. Goulburn-Murray Water has provided them with information on the costs of building infrastructure to pump from Broken River, but they can simply not afford this cost on their own. At Glenaroua Hugh Thomson has 6500 sheep in containment pens and is feeding 27 tonnes of barley a week. Again on the Broken, irrigators are struggling to access the system and are facing very low allocations and reduced reliability of supply.

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