Flood-affected irrigators to be given relief from charges
FLOOD-AFFECTED irrigators could save more than $400 after the Newman LNP Government yesterday waived and deferred water-related charges in areas declared under natural disaster arrangements.
Minister for Natural Resources and Mines, Andrew Cripps, said the annual water licence fee of $66.80 will be waived for licences in areas declared eligible under Category C natural disaster arrangements.
"In addition, water charges will also be waived for irrigators in those areas declared under natural disaster arrangements with entitlements to take water from watercourses where water charges have not yet been issued," Mr Cripps said yesterday.
"The minimum value of these water charges is $121.60 or higher depending on water use.
"Those water charges will be waived in the Coastal Burnett, Border Rivers, Callide Valley, Cressbrook Creek and Upper Hodgson Creek areas.
Mr Cripps said charges to read water meters in disaster-declared areas under Category C will also be waived for a 12-month period and the invoicing for water use meter chargers will be deferred until 1 July 2013.
"The waiving of these fees and delaying the issuing of invoices is in recognition of the difficult financial circumstances facing many irrigators, and will assist in their financial recovery. This could represent combined savings of more than $400 for many landholders."
The Department of Natural Resources and Mines is contacting water licence holders with metered entitlements in natural-disaster declared areas to inform them of the waiving of these water-related charges.
Mr Cripps reminded irrigators that they must still comply with the provisions of their water licence or entitlement, despite the waiving of water-related fees and charges.
Water harvesting charges will also remain in place, as floodwater is often harvested by irrigators for reuse at a later time.
An information pack will be mailed out explaining the arrangements, and further information for landholders is available at: www.dnrm.qld.gov.au/disaster-recovery