Queensland should use budget to use to help farmers; get on with dams

10 June 2019

Federal Minister for Water Resources and Drought David Littleproud has called on the Queensland Government to give relief for farmers through rates and lease relief, cheaper electricity and put up their share of water infrastructure in this week’s Queensland budget.

Minister Littleproud called on the Queensland Government to put up its share of the money for Emu Swamp dam and get on with the Rookwood Weir. Jackie Trad has said this will be an infrastructure budget so it’s important it’s not just infrastructure for South East Qld.

Building water infrastructure is the best way to prepare farmers for droughts minister Littleproud said.
 
“The Queensland Government continues to charge farmers crazy amounts for electricity through their state-owned electricity company,” Minister Littleproud said.

“Farmers are up against it with a terrible drought and they deserve a discount on their electricity for producing our food and fibre – a food and fibre discount. SE Qld residents enjoy low tariffs from competition where regional Queenslanders only have one provider and farmers and business pay well over the odds.

“Meanwhile Queensland still hasn’t written back to my letter asking for rates and lease relief for farmers, nor have they released their own drought review.

"I call on Queensland to provide this relief to farmers in the budget and release their own drought report immediately. The Queensland Government should pay farmer’s rates directly to local councils and should forgive lease payments to the State Government.

"The Federal Coalition Government has put up $42 million for the Emu Swamp dam plus $5 million for the road, and Queensland only needs to chip in $13 million. It's time for the Queensland Government to pull its weight and help drought proof that region.