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Disaster assistance loans available for Ballina area

The depth of hail at Fernleigh in August. Image Tracey Knowland.

Disaster relief low interest loans are now available for primary producers in the Ballina area who suffered losses as a result of storms and hail in August and November.

Northern NSW Nationals parliamentary secretary Ben Franklin said the Agricultural Natural Disaster Relief grants would help affected farmers repair their properties and get back on their feet.

‘The November storm caused more than $18.8 million worth of damage to infrastructure and horticultural crops across a number of properties,’ Mr Franklin said.

‘This followed hailstorms in August which caused $1.8 million in damage. I understand that some producers have been hit hard by these storms, which caused significant damage to farm infrastructure.’

The measures are available for damage caused by the November storm for producers in the parishes of Meerschaum, Teven, Tuckombil, and Newrybar in the Ballina LGA, and Byron, Teven, Clunes, Brunswick and Newrybar in the Byron LGA.

The measures are available for damage caused by the August storm for producers in the parishes of Teven, Tuckombil, Pt Newrybar in the Ballina LGA; and the Parishes of Byron and Pt Newrybar in the Byron LGA.

The storms impacted a large area, including parts of Ballina, Byron, Clarence Valley, Lismore, Richmond Valley and Tenterfield LGAs. Affected producers in those areas are encouraged to contact the RAA to determine their individual eligibility for assistance measures.

‘The assistance comes in the form of low interest loans of up to $130,000 with a two year interest and repayment free period,’ Mr Franklin said.

‘The low interest loans provide for replacement or repairs to property and farm infrastructure which was damaged by the storms. The NSW government is committed to ensuring our primary producers are supported in their recovery from events like these and in their preparations and planning for future events.’

Producers are urged to apply for assistance via the NSW Rural Assistance Authority (RAA) on 1800 678 593 or visit www.raa.nsw.gov.au to clarify eligibility criteria, or any other issues relating to this assistance.


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