The Tararua District has received a share of $1 million from the Ministry for Primary Industries’ $35.4 million package to support the recovery of rural communities affected by North Island weather events, including Cyclone Gabrielle.
The fund will go towards helping with the urgent maintenance of Tararua District farms impacted by Cyclone Gabrielle.
Tararua District Council [TDC] Recovery Project Coordinator Mitchell Guile said the newly announced fund from MPI is the only funding TDC has received specifically for Tararua farmers and growers.
According to the Tararua Impact Assessment Survey completed in June, approximately $7.8 million worth of damage was recorded across farms in the Tararua district.
Farmers also noted that less than 5 per cent of their total damage was covered by insurance.
Tararua Mayor Tracey Collis said securing $1 million for the Tararua district is an important result.
“Many of our farmers and growers have already spent large, unbudgeted amounts of money to get their farms functioning at a safe and manageable level through the winter months. It is our hope that the fund will offer some relief to those who are carrying considerable financial burden because of these severe weather events.”
Cyclone Recovery Programme Manager Don Cameron said farmers have faced significant challenges on their land and in their businesses since the cyclone.
“Winter conditions and ongoing rainfall have compounded those challenges. It’s hugely positive that this fund can assist them in regaining a sense of normality in their day-to-day farming operations by addressing those urgent works.”
Approximately 200 Tararua District farms were impacted through slips and flooding during Cyclone Gabrielle.
The Tararua on Track fund will support Primary Industry producers living in the Tararua District affected by the cyclone.
“The $1 million fund is for uninsured, critical repairs on land and farms due to Cyclone Gabrielle, which will boost health and safety and protect animal welfare. This can be for work already completed or for work which will be completed before December 31,” Guile said.
This work may include repairs to farm tracks which provide critical access, reinstatement of critical water supply infrastructure, reinstatement of boundary fencing and flood gate structures, and resilience works on private land where there are risks to public access.
“While these are the most likely identified works, we understand that some other workstreams may fit the criteria, and we encourage any in the affected areas to apply for the fund,” Guile said.
Applications for the ‘Tararua On Track’ Fund are open now until October 6 at www.tararuadc.govt.nz/tararua-on-track