State and Territory Governments and their project partners are now able to apply for a share of $72 million in funding for water infrastructure to assist drought-affected regions.

The Australian Government has released Expressions of Interest (EOI) guidelines for the National Water Infrastructure Development Fund’s special drought round, which set out the process and requirements for submission and assessment of proposals for funding under the drought round.

The closing date for EOIs to be submitted is 11 December 2018. Projects must be supported by the relevant state or territory government minister, and be ready to progress to construction within 12 months of the closing date to be considered for funding.

Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Michael McCormack, said the drought round was part of the Government’s $1.8 billion drought package.

The Federal Government has committed almost $2.6 billion to assist state and territory governments to undertake major water infrastructure projects.

This commitment includes $580 million through the National Water Infrastructure Development Fund, including $230 million for water infrastructure in northern Australia.

The $72 million drought round will help the states and territories to deliver greater water security for primary producers, business and communities in drought-affected regions.

In addition, the Federal Government has:

  • Expanded the Drought Communities Program to provide an extra $75 million
  • Changed tax treatment arrangements for fodder storage assets
  • Doubled concessional loans caps to $2 million
  • Committed $22.7 million toward the Great Artesian Basin bore-capping program to improve water efficiency
  • Committed $2.7 million to the Bureau of Meteorology for finer-scale regional weather and climate guides

“Just as the drought evolves, so must our policies. There is no place for set and forget. We will continue to engage with farmers to ensure our drought response meets their needs,” Mr McCormack said.

Lauren ‘LJ’ Butler is the Assistant Editor of Utility magazine and has been part of the team at Monkey Media since 2018.

After completing a Bachelor of Media, Communications and Professional Writing at the University of Wollongong in 2014, and prior to writing about the utility sector, LJ worked as a Journalist and Sub Editor across the horticulture, hardware, power equipment, construction and accommodation industries with publishers such as Glenvale Publications, Multimedia Publishing and Bean Media Group.

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