The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) is encouraging all farmers and growers affected by flooding in Canterbury to apply for support from a new $4 million fund.
Applications will open this week for the expanded Canterbury Flood Recovery Fund, which was set up to support the region’s recovery from a one in 200-year rainfall event.
“This financial support will help flood-affected farmers and growers across Canterbury to get back on their feet as quickly as possible,” says MPI’s Deputy Director-General of Agriculture and Investment Services Karen Adair.
“The clean-up task ahead of primary producers is massive and some are facing significant costs not covered by insurance.”
Almost 100 of the worst-affected farmers have already been offered grants from the initial $350,000 fund established shortly after the flood last month.
“Should those farmers require extra support, they are encouraged to submit a new application to this larger fund,” says Ms Adair.
“We have been working with Federated Farmers, DairyNZ, Beef + Lamb New Zealand, Deer Industry New Zealand and councils, to determine how this financial support can have the greatest impact.”
Grants will assist farmers to clear flood debris, enabling pasture and fodder crops to be resown.
“Our highest priority is the clean-up of debris such as shingle, boulders, trees and silt, to return paddocks to a productive state,” says Ms Adair.
“Applications can be made retrospectively for clean-up work already undertaken. The size and allocation of grants will be determined once all the applications have been received.
Grant applications will be assessed by an independent panel, made up of people who sector groups have helped to select.
“The panel will consist of people with a strong understanding of farming businesses and rural communities in Canterbury,” says Ms Adair.
“They will confirm that grants meet the eligibility criteria and that the allocation process is fair, consistent, and transparent. MPI will contribute up to half of the clean-up cost for uninsurable works.”
Applications for the fund will open on 9 July 2021 and close on 30 July 2021.
A full list of criteria, an application form and details of how to apply will be available on MPI’s website: https://www.mpi.govt.nz/funding-rural-support/adverse-events/dealing-with-floods/
Frequently asked questions:
How much funding does the Canterbury Flood Recovery Fund have to distribute?
The Canterbury Flood Recovery Fund was established following an historic one in 200-year rainfall event. It was initially allocated $350,000 by the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) and topped up with a further $4 million in late June 2021.
What can the funding be used for?
The fund is to help flood-affected farmers and growers get back on their feet as quickly as possible. The highest priority is the initial clean-up of flood debris, such as shingle, boulders, trees and silt. Repairing damaged fencing, water systems and culverts will be considered for a second funding round if there are any remaining funds.
How can you apply for a grant?
Farmers and growers seeking financial assistance from the flood recovery fund must submit an application.
An application form will be available on the MPI website from 9 July 2021:
Applications for the fund open on 9 July 2021 and close on 30 July 2021.
The Ministry for Primary Industries will notify applicants when their application is received. All applicants will be informed if they have, or have not, received a grant from the fund.
Who can access grants from the fund?
The fund is designed to help farms with the most severe flood damage. The grants are intended to provide a contribution towards immediate recovery work. The following criteria has been set for assessing applications:
- The priority of funding is for the initial clean-up of flood deposited debris such as shingle, boulders, trees and silt, where funding is not covered by another mechanism.
- Farmers applying for a grant must earn more than 51% of their family income from the damaged farm.
- Only Freehold land and land covered by the Crown Pastoral Land Act 1998 is eligible.
- Applications can be made retrospectively for clean-up and repair work already undertaken.
- MPI will contribute at least 50% of the uninsurable works’ cost.
- Applicants must provide evidence (invoices, receipts, before and after photos) to show the funds were used for the purpose applied for.
- All primary industries are eligible, from pastoral to cropping operations.
Who will assess the applications?
The applications will be assessed by an independent assessment panel who industry groups have helped to select. The panel will consist of people with a strong understanding of farming businesses and rural communities in Canterbury. We hope to have them confirmed as quickly as possible. The panel will confirm grants meet eligibility criteria and that the allocation process is fair, consistent, and transparent. The panel will have some discretion to make funding decisions based on exceptional circumstances, such as severe hardship. A random selection of recipients will be audited to ensure transparency.
How big will the grants be?
The size and distribution of grants will be determined once all applications have been received and considered. Applicants will be informed of the amount of funding offered to the them following an assessment by the assessment panel and MPI.
What will the application process involve?
Farmers and growers seeking financial assistance will be required to download and fill out an application form.
Forms will be available to be downloaded from the MPI website from 9 July 2021: https://www.mpi.govt.nz/funding-rural-support/adverse-events/dealing-with-floods/
Completed forms, along with any quotes, invoices or photos, need to be emailed to email@example.com
MPI staff will be available to assist farmers to complete their applications.
Can I submit an application if I have already received a grant from the Canterbury Flood Recovery Fund?
Yes. Farmers and growers who received grants of $3500 in the initial round of funding can submit applications for further funding. The initial recipients were considered to be the most severely affected properties.
Who do I contact if I need help filling out my application?
Farmers and growers who need assistance completing their application are encouraged to contact the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI).
There are two ways to do this. You can call 0800 00 83 33 and ask to be put through to the team managing the Canterbury Flood Recovery Fund. Alternatively, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org