Saturday, April 20, 2024

$700k unlocked for North Island flood recovery

The Government has announced it will unlock an additional $700,000 in support for regions that have been worst hit by recent flooding and storm damage in the upper North Island.

“We’re supporting the response and recovery of Auckland, Waikato, Coromandel, Northland, and Bay of Plenty regions, through activating Enhanced Taskforce Green to help with flood relief efforts,” said Minister for Social Development and Employment, Carmel Sepuloni.

The Minister said $500,000 will be made available to provide unskilled and semi-skilled jobs for local people who will support farmers, growers, and communities by completing clean-up work on their properties.

“The damage to farms, homes, roads, and bridges across the regions affected is extensive and no doubt will take a long time to be fully assessed. By making this funding available, local councils and other authorised agencies can hire job seekers to help,” she said.

The flooding and storm damage in Northland, Auckland, Waikato, Coromandel and Bay of Plenty has also been classified as a medium-scale adverse event, which unlocks extra support for farmers and growers.

“Some areas have recorded unprecedented amounts of rain, which has flooded farmland, damaged infrastructure, and washed away some crops,” Agriculture Minister, Damien O’Connor said.

“The record rainfall comes on top of what has been a challenging and wet season for many in the upper North Island, which compounds the stress for people. It’s important we contribute to helping farmers and growers who have managed their way through these events.

“Funding of $200,000 will be allocated to Rural Support Trusts who know their communities and what support is required to help people through.”

The Ministers said Government agencies, councils and sector groups will continue to work together to monitor the storm’s impact, and determine where support should be targeted to the greatest need.

In addition to the funding announced today, Inland Revenue is set to activate its Adverse Event Income Equalisation Scheme for the affected regions. This will enable farming businesses to even out income fluctuations by spreading their gross income from year to year.

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