Wingecarribee Shire Council is to defer rates for local farmers and donate funds for fodder as the drought tightens its grip across the State.
Councillors unanimously decided to defer rates and allocate $10,000 towards cattle feed following a motion put forward by the Mayor at the Council Meeting of Wednesday 8 August 2018.
“I’m delighted all councillors voted in favour of this Mayoral Minute,” said Wingecarribee Shire Mayor Councillor Ken Halstead.
“We’re witnessing one of the most devastating droughts to hit our State, including our Shire, in recent years,” he said.
“We believe that as civic leaders it’s important to lead by example and offer a helping hand to our farmers doing it tough during this crisis.”
As per the decision all eligible local farmers who lodge a hardship application will have their current rates deferred until the beginning of the 2019/20 financial year. Rates which are deferred will not be subject to any interest payments.
An additional $10,000 will be donated from the Mayoral Relief Fund towards a local cattle fodder appeal.
“It may only be a small gesture in the greater scheme of the crisis, but we believe that it’s important our community rallies behind our farmers,” the Mayor added.
The Mayoral Minute follows an earlier Notice of Motion put forward by Councillors in June that proposes Council review previous drought relief initiatives and considers developing a longer-term hardship policy for future natural disasters.
Farmers considering taking up the rates deferral are urged to contact Council on phone 4868 0888 or visit www.wsc.nsw.gov.au/drought-rate-relief.