After being away up the coast for a week and seeing the vast contrasts in the countryside, it made me wonder what people from the coast must think when they do the reverse and drive out here and realise that the areas that are producing their food just don’t have the rain.
Even though it was dark when we returned, we could smell the freshly dug soil and see landholders out sowing.
You may have seen that the State Government have made access available to the Drought Transport Fund. This has been in response to the increased need for landholders to relocate or sell stock negatively affected by drought. The assistance available via a loan of up to $20,000 per enterprise to fund the cost of drought related transport. This loan has a concessional interest rate of 2.5% which is fixed for the term of the loan.
The Department of Primary Industries utilise the Combined Drought Indicator (CDI) which is an interactive tool providing detailed seasonal conditions. As at 26 April the CDI has sections of the Parkes Shire rated as being in drought conditions and further areas of Parkes and Forbes Shires listed in the drought onset category.
Landholders need to obtain approval of the loan prior to the transport of stock, fodder or water.
Applicants need to demonstrate that they are the owner and operator of a farm business in NSW; the business operates as a sole trader, partnership, trust or private company and trades agricultural products; the business is registered with the Australian Taxation Office as a primary producer, and has an Australian Business Number (ABN); the owners and operators of the business earn more than 50% of their gross income from the primary production enterprise; the business is being negatively impacted by drought conditions which is assessed, by the NSW Rural Assistance Authority (RAA). This is just an overview of some of the conditions, go to the Rural Assistance Authority website or ring 1800 678 593 for more information.
We value our rural community and would urge anyone who is finding the current conditions difficult to face to contact one of our rural financial counsellors by ringing 1800 940 404 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are concerned about your own or someone else’s mental health, you can call the NSW Mental Health Line 1800 011 511 for advice. For links to other services, go to the Rural Adversity Mental Health Program at www.ramhp.com.au
Please remember that if you are assisting someone with an immediate concern, take them to your nearest emergency department.
Just a reminder that there are two workshops coming up in the next couple of weeks. The first being Dick Richardson on Tuesday (click for flier), 1 May. Refer to last weeks article for more information. Morning tea and lunch will be provided, but attendees need to RSVP to Paul Stanbrook on 0421 523 130 or book via the Sticky Tickets link on our website, facebook or just type in www.stickytickets.com.au/67684
Barry Sampson will be presenting a weed workshop in Parkes on Wednesday, 9 May. I will have more information about Barry’s workshop next week, or check out our facebook page.
We are also pleased to have some local insight into local biological controls with input from the Parkes Shire Council Weeds Officer. This workshop is also free, but RSVP is required to either 02 6862 4914, email@example.com or go to www.stickytickets.com.au/67639
Due to the dry conditions and forecast conditions, we are doing our best to deliver workshops in our area free of charge to attendees, but appreciate your RSVP to make this possible.
For more information about anything in this article, please contact Central West Lachlan Landcare on 02 6862 4914, firstname.lastname@example.org, facebook or our website at centralwestlachlanlandcare.org
Until next week, happy Landcaring!