Assistance for producers affected by Bilpin hailstorm
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Primary producers affected by a severe hailstorm in the Bilpin area in February are now eligible for Natural Disaster Relief Assistance, Minister for Primary Industries Ian Macdonald said today.
Minister Macdonald said the hailstorm on 26 February caused more than $2.1 million damage on at least 11 properties in the area.
"Around 59 hectares of apples, pome fruit, stone fruit and persimmons were affected by the hailstorm, with damage at about 100 per cent of the crops involved," he said.
"The storm destroyed fruit, broke tree branches and severely damaged hail netting.
"Flower and vegetable crops in the district were also devastated by the storm."
Minister Macdonald said affected landholders could now apply for Natural Disaster Relief Assistance through the NSW Rural Assistance Authority on 1 800 678 593.
"The assistance comes in the form of loans of up to $130,000, at 2.85 per cent interest per annum with a two-year interest free and repayment free period," he explained.
"These loans provide working capital to help producers replace or repair infrastructure.
"They are another example of practical measures the Iemma Government is putting in place to help producers meet the challenges of life on the land."
To be eligible, growers must demonstrate they are in urgent need of assistance, that they earn the majority of their income from primary production, and they are in working on the affected farm.
Media contact: Lyndall Derrig 0400 462 447