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Home > Agricultural Policy > Government and Community Programs > New Drought Reform Package
Drought ReformDrought is part and parcel of Australia’s climate, but its effects represent one of the biggest challenges to our agriculture sector.
At the May 2013 Standing Council on Primary Industries meeting in Canberra, the Commonwealth, State and Territory Governments agreed on a new drought program focussed on risk management and preparedness rather than crisis management.
The Australian Government is leading the National Drought Program Reform process. The new package includes:
- FARM BUSINESS TRAINING
The Tasmanian Government is playing a key role in the development of a national approach to farm business training based on a nationally agreed Vocational Education and Training skill set.
- FARM HOUSEHOLD SUPPORT PAYMENT
The proposal is for a national farm household support payment, to be available at all times – without the need for a drought declaration.
- FARM MANAGEMENT DEPOSITS AND TAX
Access will be maintained to the current Australia-wide primary producer taxation concessions, including the Farm Management Deposits Scheme and income tax averaging.
- SOCIAL SUPPORT SERVICES
Australian, State and Territory governments will look into more effective ways of providing social services in rural communities.
For additional information and frequent Questions and Answers on the national drought reform, see http://www.daff.gov.au/about/budget/budget-2013-14/national-drought-program-reform-q-and-a
- TOOLS AND TECHNOLOGIES
Australian, State and Territory Governments will investigate improved provision of tools and technologies to inform farmer risk management decision making.
There will be national cooperation and coordination to deliver the package. Implementation is scheduled from 1 July 2014. In the interim, there are measures in place now that farmers can use to help prepare for future challenges including drought. Until the new programs are implemented the following measures remain available to farm families:The Australian Government also recently announced a farm finance package (separate to the national drought reforms) that builds the ongoing financial resilience of farmers who are currently struggling with high levels of debt. More information is available at: http://www.daff.gov.au/agriculture-food/drought/assistance/farm-finance
For more information on the new drought reform package visit www.daff.gov.au/agriculture-food/drought. To read the Council of Australian Governments' Standing Council on Primary Industries communiqué visit www.mincos.gov.au/communiques
In Tasmania, our future policy will be aligned to the National Drought Reform Principles. Tasmania has developed our own Drought Guidelines to ensure that government measures help farmers prepare for drought and other challenges and which guide Tasmania’s future responses to drought. The Guidelines align with the national drought principles.
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For any questions or further information, please contact:
Senior Policy Analyst
Agricultural Policy Group
Phone: (03) 6336 5383
Tasmania Online | Service Tasmania
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