Skip links and keyboard navigation

Frequently Asked Questions - Special Disaster Assistance - Primary Producer

FAQs – Primary Producers (Special Disaster Assistance Grants)

In response to the North & Far North Queensland Flood Disaster (25 January – 14 February 2019), QRIDA is providing assistance to eligible primary producers under the joint Commonwealth and State Government funded Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements 2018.

Grants under this scheme up to a maximum of $75,000 are available to help eligible applicants pay for costs associated with the clean-up and reinstatement of their primary production enterprise arising out of direct damage caused by the disaster event.

Navigate to: Assistance available l Eligible costs l How do I apply

(1)  Assistance available

(a) What supporting information do I need to provide with my application?

Photographs of the direct damage are required. Photographs taken using a smartphone can be suitable.

In addition, you can provide other evidence such as relevant quotes, estimates or tax invoices (if available) as you would retain in the normal course of your business. Whilst it is not a requirement, the more information you can provide to support your application will assist towards processing your application as expediently as possible.

(b) How many times can I claim for assistance?

Grants are available up to a maximum of $75,000.

You can submit one application for the maximum grant of $75,000 or alternatively lodge multiple applications as the recovery process continues, up to a cumulative total of the maximum grant available of $75,000.

(c) What if I have more than one property in separate locations that have incurred damage from the disaster event? Am I eligible for more than one grant?

You may be eligible if you can establish that your properties are eligible separate businesses.

When determining an eligible separate business, QRIDA may consider (but is not limited to):
a) the staffing arrangements of the separate property;
b) whether the property has its own plant equipment or stock;
c) the accounting arrangements of the separate property;
d) whether the separate property operates under its own trading name;
e) the commercial scale, viability and autonomy of each property.

QRIDA will consider each application on a case by case basis taking into account the particular circumstances.

(d) I have a primary production enterprise which currently does not require the majority of my labour and generate the majority of income and has suffered damage as a result of the disaster event. Am I eligible for assistance?

The applicant must spend the majority of their labour in, and derive the majority of their income from the primary production enterprise, unless you can demonstrate the production potential to eventually do so.

An example of production potential of a horticultural enterprise – at the time of the disaster, an applicant had planted a commercial size fruit orchard that is still maturing which will eventually require the majority of their labour and provide the majority of their income.

An example of production potential of a cattle enterprise – an applicant is not currently devoting the majority of their labour and not earning the majority of their income, however at the time of the disaster had built up their cattle numbers to a sufficient scale that realistically provides them with the potential to eventually do so.

(2)  Eligible costs

(a) Is purchasing and transporting fodder or essential movement of livestock eligible for assistance?

Yes. Costs associated with purchasing and transporting fodder or essential movement of livestock are eligible to enable you to feed and move livestock impacted by the disaster event. However, the purchase of fodder for longer term storage is not eligible.

(b) Is assistance available for expenditure associated with the combined purchase and freight of fodder with other producers?

Yes. You are eligible to apply for your share of the costs of combined activities for eligible purposes. Estimates of your share of these collaborative activities should be provided to QRIDA.

(c) Is assistance available for costs of using helicopters to deliver fodder drops to stranded livestock?

Yes, in the following circumstances:

  • the hire costs of a helicopter used to deliver fodder drops to stranded livestock;
  • the costs of fuel associated with the use of your own helicopter to deliver fodder drops;
  • the costs as invoiced by a Local Government Authority for the use of a helicopter to deliver fodder drops.

(d) I have a primary production enterprise which currently does not require the majority of my labour and generate the majority of income and has suffered damage as a result of the disaster event. Am I eligible for assistance?

The applicant must spend the majority of their labour in, and derive the majority of their income from the primary production enterprise, unless you can demonstrate the production potential to eventually do so.

An example of production potential of a horticultural enterprise – at the time of the disaster, an applicant had planted a commercial size fruit orchard that is still maturing which will eventually require the majority of their labour and provide the majority of their income.

An example of production potential of a cattle enterprise – an applicant is not currently devoting the majority of their labour and not earning the majority of their income, however at the time of the disaster had built up their cattle numbers to a sufficient scale that realistically provides them with the potential to eventually do so.

(e) What if I had livestock on agistment within the declared disaster area that had died as result of the disaster, but my main business is located outside of the declared disaster area?

You may be eligible for assistance if you had agisted livestock within the declared disaster area that had died as a result of the disaster event, even if you operate your main primary production business outside of the declared disaster area.

In making an application, in addition to photographic or other evidence of the stock losses on the impacted property, please also include copy of your agistment agreement. If one does not exist, please provide a statutory declaration or further information to support your application.

(f) Am I eligible for assistance if I’ve used my own plant and equipment to repair damage?

Yes, you are able to claim assistance for the actual costs of any additional labour or fuel and oil incurred in the use of this plant and equipment for clean-up and reinstatement activities for the disaster event.

(g) Can I use the assistance to claim the cost of regular wages for my existing employees during the immediate clean-up and reinstatement phase?

For existing employees, you can claim for additional wages or overtime paid to enable the immediate reinstatement of the primary production business.

You can also use the assistance to help cover the cost of additional employees required for clean-up and reinstatement activities.

(h) My primary production enterprise has suffered a loss of trade as a result of the disaster. Can I apply for assistance to cover loss of income?

Loss of income is not eligible under this scheme.  If your enterprise has not experienced direct damage, but has suffered a significant loss of income as a result of the disaster event you may be eligible to apply for a Disaster Assistance (Essential Working Capital) loan.

(i) Is the assistance available for the cost of repairing river or creek banks damaged in the disaster?

Yes, in situations where the repairs have been approved by the river improvement trust, NRM group, local council or other relevant authority. QRIDA will require evidence such as a permit or other approval to demonstrate that the repairs are formally authorized and confirmation of the costs to be contributed by the primary producer and the relevant authority.

(j) Is assistance available for the cost of replanting?

Yes, assistance is available for replacing lost or damaged plants, including replanting, where the replacement is essential to immediately resume business operations.

For example, an intensive nursery grower who has lost rootstock in the disaster may need to replace this stock before the business can recommence its operations.

For broadacre crops such as sugarcane, where paddocks or sections of paddocks have been impacted to the extent that these areas will be replanted at the next planting opportunity in order to immediately resume business operations, the cost of replanting these areas will be eligible.

Where the loss of plants has been limited to the fringes of paddocks and the producer has decided not to immediately replant, these losses will not be eligible under the grants.

Disaster Assistance Loans are also available for replanting.

(k) Is assistance available to cover the cost of fertiliser and chemicals to salvage damaged plants?

Yes, assistance is available to salvage the area of a crop that has been damaged in the disaster. If fertiliser and chemicals can be applied to salvage these damaged plants, these costs are eligible under the grants.

(l) A relative has their own contracting business.  Can I use them to repair our damage?

You are able to use relatives with their own contracting business to repair your damage as long as transactions are at arm’s length and conducted in the same way as with any other contractor.

(m) If I use my farm machinery to undertake repairs for my neighbour, and my neighbour does likewise for me, can we both apply for assistance, charging each other contractor rates?

It is expected, where capacity exists to undertake your own clean-up and reinstatement using your own plant and equipment, that you would do so. You may claim for additional labour or fuel and oil costs incurred in the use of this equipment.

Contract work can only be considered as an eligible claim when the repairs cannot be undertaken utilising your own equipment.

(n) Can I apply for assistance to repair or replace my house and/or household goods?

The assistance does not cover repairing houses or repairing or replacing household goods.

However, you can apply for assistance to repair buildings that are used for staff accommodation. The repair of buildings must be essential for the immediate resumption of the primary production enterprise.

(o) Can I seek clean-up and recovery costs for damage incurred on a property I am leasing?

Yes, as long as you can satisfactorily demonstrate that you as tenant (lessee) are primarily responsible for the cost of the eligible clean-up and reinstatement activities.

An applicant is required to provide a copy of their lease and any other documents to demonstrate that they are primarily responsible for the eligible costs being claimed.

QRIDA may also accept a co-signed statutory declaration if this assists the applicant in demonstrating they are responsible for costs being claimed or they are unable to immediately resume farming activities without meeting the cost of reinstatement of the damaged property themselves.

Such a co-signed statutory declaration for an applicant who is the lessee (tenant) should clearly state:

1. That the lessor will not be meeting the costs of reinstatement of the damaged property for which the lessee (applicant) has made the grant application;
2. That the applicant (lessee) cannot immediately resume business activities without meeting the cost of reinstatement of the damaged property themselves;
3. The nature and extent of damage impacting on the immediate resumption of business activities;
4. Details of the reinstatement costs being claimed by the applicant which differ from the existing lease contract or other documents outlining the liabilities/responsibilities of each party and which have been agreed between the parties;
5. That these same costs are not covered by insurance or other government assistance.

(p) I am a fisher based in a defined disaster area.  Can I apply for the assistance?

Fishers who have sustained direct damage to fishing equipment and vessels as a result of the disaster may be eligible for assistance. Assistance is not however available to compensate for loss of income due to inability to fish because of the event.

If your enterprise has not experienced direct damage, but has suffered a significant loss of income or other impacts as a result of the disaster event, you may be eligible to apply for a Disaster Assistance (Essential Working Capital) loan.
For information on the Disaster Assistance (Essential Working Capital) Loans Scheme click here.

(q) Are nurseries regarded as primary producers and able to apply for disaster recovery assistance?

Yes, a nursery is regarded as an eligible primary producer if they propagate the majority of their stock for sale. If the nursery is largely a retail outlet and principally sells other producers stock, it would be regarded as a small business and may be eligible for that assistance.

(r) Is GST included in any payment received?

No.  If you are registered for GST, the GST component on your invoice(s) should be claimed once you complete your Business Activity Statement (BAS).  You will receive a ‘payment advice’ and approval letter from us if your application is successful.  Please retain as a record for taxation purposes.

If you are NOT registered for GST and therefore unable to claim the GST portion from the Australian Tax Office (ATO), QRIDA will consider reimbursement of the GST inclusive amount on your invoice/s.

(s) Is grant assistant under this scheme taxable income?

No. Grant assistance received under this disaster assistance measure is not assessable income and is therefore exempt from income tax. Please seek advice from your accountant and/or the Australian Tax Office if you have further questions about your particular situation.

Further information about the Australian Government’s treatment of income tax in relation to this disaster grant can be found here.

(3) How do I apply?

Applications can be made:

  • By emailing your scanned completed application form and supporting information to QRIDA at contact_us@qrida.qld.gov.au. Your total email message size should be under 8MB.  If your email size exceeds 8MB you can send your documentation in across multiple emails.  If you are unsure, please contact us on 1800 623 946 to confirm receipt.
  • Writeable PDF form can be downloaded from the QRIDA website
  • By posting your completed application form and supporting information to QRIDA.

Has your question been answered?

If you require further assistance, please contact QRIDA on:

Email: contact_us@qrida.qld.gov.au

Phone: Freecall 1800 623 946

Post:   GPO Box 211, Brisbane, QLD, 4001

Last updated
10 April 2019