Deniliquin Pastoral Times

Coun­cil sus­pends its drought pro­gram

- Weather · Agriculture · Drought · Industries · Natural Disasters · Disasters · New South Wales · Deniliquin · Edward River Council · Australian Bureau of Meteorology

Ed­ward River Coun­cil’s Drought Re­lief pro­gram, in­tro­duced in Septem­ber of 2018, has come to an end.

It has been prompted by de­cent rain­fall over the past few months, which has re­sulted in NSW and the Rive­rina re­gion no longer be­ing con­sid­ered as be­ing in drought.

The re­lief pro­gram of­fered el­i­gi­ble land­hold­ers ac­cess to coun­cil’s water re­serves, at the cost of de­liv­ery only.

Coun­cil agreed at its Au­gust meet­ing to end the pro­gram, but said it could be in­tro­duced again if sup­port is needed.

‘‘Hope­fully the next dry pe­riod will be in the dis­tant fu­ture,’’ Mayor Norm Bren­nan said.

‘‘I think these drought fund­ing pro­grams have been an enor­mous help in keep­ing agri­cul­ture peo­ple in a po­si­tion where they can come out of the drought in a bet­ter sit­u­a­tion.

‘‘When you look at the stats for De­niliquin, in March we had four inches of rain, April four inches, May four inches, June two inches and so far this month I think I have recorded 63mm, so two and a quar­ter inches.

‘‘We have had a lot of rain com­pared to what we have had over the pre­vi­ous two to three years, which is fan­tas­tic news to those in the agri­cul­tural in­dus­try and our com­mu­nity.’’

The re­lief pro­gram was in­tro­duced 2018, and was ex­tended by the coun­cil Fe­bru­ary last year.

Gen­eral man­ager Phil Stone said through the pro­gram, coun­cil was able to sup­port many lo­cal farm­ers.

‘‘Be­tween Oc­to­ber of 2018 and July of 2020, coun­cil do­nated 14 me­gal­itres of water to Ed­ward River Coun­cil ratepay­ers, which was worth about $112,600.

‘‘We do­nated the water and wore the loss cost. All the farm­ers had to do was pay the freight.’’

Since the be­gin­ning of 2020, the Bureau of Me­te­o­rol­ogy has recorded 342.2mm of rain at its De­niliquin air­port weather sta­tion. in in

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