Government Drought Package a Joke

This week we saw the government announce how it planned to help drought affected farmers. While the announcement outlined $3.9 billion was going to farmers, in reality this is just going to be held in a bank account with only the interest going to farmers. Full story below.

WHAT A BLOODY JOKE!This morning I read the headline that the government was going to commit $3.9 billion to drought…

Posted by Pauline Hanson's Please Explain on Thursday, October 25, 2018


From ABC NEWS 25/10/18

National rural reporter Brett Worthington and regional affairs reporter Anna Henderson

Helping farmers prepare for future droughts will be the focus of a new multi-billion-dollar fund that Prime Minister Scott Morrison will unveil today.

The $5-billion Future Drought Fund will be announced at a national drought summit, which brings together state and federal governments, weather experts, farm lobbyists and charities, in Canberra.

The Federal Government will initially commit $3.9 billion to the fund, which will reach $5 billion by 2028.

But only $100 million will be available each year from 2020, with that money being allocated by a board of guardians.

“This funding will support farmers and their local communities when it’s not raining,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison said.

“It guarantees drought support for the men and women who drive our nation.”

Legislation to create the fund will have to pass the Parliament before it can be created.

Provided that happens, the interest gathered from the fund will go towards water infrastructure and drought resilience projects.

The focus will be on farmers, non-government organisations and communities to future-proof themselves to better handle droughts.

Money will be for community services, research, adoption of technology and infrastructure that supports long-term sustainability.

Money for the drought fund, which is modelled on the Medical Research Future Fund, will come from the Building Australia Fund, which has sat dormant since the 2014-15 financial year.

With a focus on future-proofing, it means the fund will sit separate to existing projects and funding that helps farmers when they are in drought.

“The challenges of drought vary from farm to farm, district to district, town to town and we continually need to adapt and build capacity,” Mr Morrison said.

Farmers hoping for firm policies

The drought summit comes as the commodity forecaster ABARES yesterday warned unfavourable seasonal conditions would further slash expected grain yields.

The summit will include presentations from the Bureau of Meteorology, ABARES, drought co-ordinator Major General Stephen Day, and drought envoy Barnaby Joyce.

The National Farmers’ Federation has demanded the summit be more than a talk-fest and instead offer concrete policies to support farmers.

It wants a new drought agreement between the federal and state governments, better risk management tools for farmers, and improvements to farmer support payments.

It also wants transport and infrastructure upgrades in regional communities that battle drought.

Opposition critical of drought forum

Opposition agriculture spokesman Joel Fitzgibbon has questioned whether the summit will be worthwhile.

Speaking ahead of the announcement on the multi-billion-dollar drought fund, he criticised the Government for piling such a large number of stakeholders into a short meeting.

“We’ve got two hours for 170 people to discuss long-term planning. It ain’t going to happen, sadly.”

Mr Fitzgibbon maintains the Government should have done more for communities that have been in entrenched drought for years.

“It’s somewhat extraordinary,” he said.

“We are in our seventh year of drought, this Government is now in its sixth year in office, and yet we’re having a drought summit to talk about drought.”

The National Farmers Federation came into these talks with a wish list of measures it wanted the Government to take up.

“Five billion dollars is no mean feat. It’s a significant amount of funding,” NFF president Fiona Simson said.

“Obviously we’ll be interested in some of the detail about what that money is to be spent on, what sort of programs will be supported.”

She said at first glance she was happy with the Government’s approach.

Gunnedah sheep and cattle farmer Chris Mammen is among those living on the land who are hoping that the Government’s policies help in the long term, and move beyond emergency payments.

“The drought policy doesn’t seem to match that versatility that most farmers try to strive for I guess,” he said.

“[It’s] like putting a round ball in a square hole sometimes.”

Read the original article here.

4 replies
  1. Wayne Fallen
    Wayne Fallen says:

    An announcement by the government which completely lacks the solution to drought, that is, building the infrastructure which has been identified for decades as essential in drought proofing the inland and boosting rural production.

  2. Geoffrey Schleehauf
    Geoffrey Schleehauf says:

    Biggest problem with our major party politicians is that very few if any, have had to work in an environment where the weather dictates what you can and cannot do. I came from a country town on the Darling Downs and a few years after leaving school joined the Army because drought had caused lay offs from many jobs. Although times have changed in many fields, this is not the case with our farmers and rural communities. It appears that many of the Canberra brigade forget that this country owes a hell of a lot to those people within those communities, particularly with food production and earnings from other countries.
    Over the years many people have left the country because of the hardships and constant scraping to make ends meet. Young people leave the family properties with hope of a better future within the cities and we all know how great this is. Sadly, some people commit suicide due to a feeling of helplessness, debt or self blame that they are unable to do as their forefathers did. Added to this is that many are unable to work their land to it’s full potential when gas companies ride rough shod of their properties backed up by townie politicians. Australian people seethe at the way our governments treat it’s people when so many are doing it very hard. The $3.9 billion dollar dangling carrot is nothing but a slap in the face to these people, particularly when the full details of this pittance are revealed. Worse still is the fact that because our country’s leaders do not have the guts to withdraw from the UN and the Paris Agreements, billions of dollars that could be used to assist our own are thrown down the gurgler. Our power and fuel costs just add a further weight around the necks of Australian people and it’s farmers. It’s high time that we had some Prime ministers with some guts and the will to do what they were elected to do, “Look after Australia and it’s interests first!” Keep up the good work Pauline and good luck!

  3. Lynn C Brown
    Lynn C Brown says:

    Hello Pauline and your team, Re the comments you have made, my husband and I are in agreement with you on the issues you ‘explain’ but are looking forward to attending meetings here in Queensland.
    We are members of your party but joined when we were living in NSW.
    When we decided to move here several months ago it took a lot of work to make the move.
    We have been here just over 2 weeks are now officially residents of the Gold Coast. Have our Driving Licences and all out other paperwork in order.

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