Australian Government, 2011‑12 Budget
Budget

Part 2: Expense Measures (Continued)

Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry

Animal and Plant Pest and Disease Eradication Programs — meeting existing commitments

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of the Treasury 12.6 2.8
Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry
Total 12.6 2.8

The Government will provide $15.4 million over two years to meet commitments to eradicate or control existing animal and plant pest and disease incursions. These funds will be administered by the Department of the Treasury, through the Federal Financial Relations Framework, to meet commitments with state and territory governments and industries relating to pest and disease eradication.

Eradication activities under those programs include Chestnut Blight, Myrtle Rust, Red Imported Fire Ants, Electric Ants, Asian Honeybee, Branched Broomrape, European House Borer, four tropical weeds (Koster's Curse, Limnocharis, Mikania Vine and some Miconia species) and Siam Weed.

Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry — departmental efficiencies

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry 0.8 ‑11.1 ‑11.2 ‑11.3

The Government will achieve savings of $32.8 million over four years in the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry through the rationalisation of corporate functions. These savings will be achieved with minimal impact on the delivery of the Department's core programs. The expense in 2011‑12 relates to implementation costs.

Savings from this measure will be redirected to support other Government priorities.

Drought Assistance — Exceptional Circumstances assistance for primary producers

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of the Treasury 2.7 8.2
Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry 2.2 6.6
Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations 0.2 0.6
Department of Human Services 0.3
Department of Health and Ageing .. 0.1
Centrelink 0.4
Total 5.5 15.8

The Government will provide $21.3 million over two years to continue support for primary producers in regions that have been declared eligible for Exceptional Circumstances assistance.

Exceptional Circumstances assistance provides interest rate subsidies and income support to assist viable farm businesses and farm families who have been adversely affected by prolonged drought. Eligible recipients are also provided with a health care concession card and access to Youth Allowance for their children.

The off‑farm income exemption under the Exceptional Circumstances Relief Payment of $20,000 per annum will be maintained. This will enable assistance to continue to be provided to a wide range of primary producers in areas declared eligible for Exceptional Circumstances assistance.

From 1 July 2011, the off‑farm net asset exemption under the Exceptional Circumstances Interest Rate Subsidy for new recipients will be aligned to the Newstart level of $258,000.

Further information can be found in various press releases issued by the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.

Drought Assistance — Exceptional Circumstances assistance for small businesses

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry 0.2 0.5
Department of Human Services 0.4
Department of the Treasury 0.1 0.2
Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations .. ..
Department of Health and Ageing .. ..
Centrelink ..
Total 0.2 1.2

The Government will provide $1.4 million over two years to continue support for small businesses with up to 100 employees that are dependent on business from farmers in regions declared eligible for Exceptional Circumstances assistance.

Small business assistance provides interest rate subsidies and income support to assist viable farm‑dependent businesses and their families that have been adversely affected by prolonged drought. Eligible recipients are also provided with a health care concession card and access to Youth Allowance for their children.

From 1 July 2011, the non‑business salaries and wages exemption of the Exceptional Circumstances Relief Payment of $20,000 per annum will be removed and the non‑business net asset exemption of the Exceptional Circumstances Interest Rate Subsidy for new recipients will be aligned to the Newstart level of $258,000.

Further information can be found in various press releases issued by the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.

Drought Assistance — interim income support for primary producers — Delungra area

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry 1.0
Centrelink 0.1
Total 1.1

The Government provided $1.1 million in 2010‑11 to support primary producers in the Delungra area, New South Wales, which has been declared eligible for interim income support.

Once a fully completed application for a region has been received by the Australian Government and has been deemed to show a prima facie case for an Exceptional Circumstances declaration, interim income support is made available to eligible primary producers on conditions equivalent to the Exceptional Circumstances Relief Payment.

Access to interim income support is available for up to six months while the Exceptional Circumstances application is assessed by the National Rural Advisory Council. Should the Government declare Exceptional Circumstances in that region, interim income support ceases and standard Exceptional Circumstances assistance arrangements commence.

Further information can be found in the press release of 24 November 2010 issued by the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.

Drought Assistance — interim income support for small business — Delungra area

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry 0.1
Centrelink ..
Total 0.2

The Government provided $158,000 in 2010‑11 to support small businesses with up to 100 employees that are dependent on business from farmers in the Delungra area, New South Wales, which was declared eligible for interim income support.

Once a fully completed application for a region has been received by the Australian Government and has been deemed to show a prima facie case for an Exceptional Circumstances declaration, interim income support is made available to eligible small businesses on conditions equivalent to the Exceptional Circumstances Relief Payment.

Access to interim income support is available for up to six months while the Exceptional Circumstances application is assessed by the National Rural Advisory Council. Should the Government declare Exceptional Circumstances in that region, interim income support ceases and standard Exceptional Circumstances assistance arrangements commence.

Further information can be found in the press release of 24 November 2010 issued by the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.

Drought Assistance — professional advice and planning grant — wind up costs

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Human Services 1.3
Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry
Centrelink ‑1.2
Total ‑1.2 1.3

The Government will provide $0.1 million over two years to Centrelink to meet the costs associated with the scheduled termination of the Professional Advice and Planning Grant program on 30 June 2011.

The program provides taxable grants of up to $5,500 to eligible farmers in Exceptional Circumstances‑declared areas for professional business and financial planning advice. The grants may be used to undertake a farm business viability assessment and to obtain financial and agronomic advice on changes necessary to ensure the farm business recovers from drought.

Drought Assistance — re‑establishment assistance — extension

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry 9.6
Department of Human Services 0.5 ..
Centrelink
Total 10.1 0.0

The Government will provide $10.1 million over two years to extend, until 30 June 2012, re‑establishment assistance to primary producers in severe financial difficulty who decide to leave their farms.

To be eligible, primary producers must be in an Exceptional Circumstances‑declared region on or after 1 July 2010. The assistance includes one‑off exit grants of up to $150,000, grants of up to $10,000 for advice and retraining, and up to $10,000 in relocation assistance.

Drought Assistance — transitional income support — extension

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry 12.8
Department of Human Services 1.6 ..
Total 14.4 0.0

The Government will provide $14.5 million over two years to continue providing eligible farm families experiencing hardship with up to 12 months of income support payments equivalent to the Newstart Allowance. Eligibility criteria for assistance will include a similar income test to the Newstart Allowance and a limit on the net value of assets of $1.5 million. Recipients of Exceptional Circumstances Relief Payments are not eligible for this support. Applicants will be required to obtain and act on business viability advice and training available through the Australia's Farming Future — Climate Change Adjustment Program. The funding includes $1.7 million over two years for the Department of Human Services to deliver the program.

Drought policy reform — pilot of new measures in Western Australia — extension and expansion

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry 13.6
Department of the Treasury 13.4 6.7
Department of Human Services 7.4 0.1
Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs 1.9
Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations 0.9
Department of Health and Ageing 0.2
Centrelink
Total 37.3 6.8

The Government will provide $44.1 million over two years to extend and expand the pilot of new drought reform measures in Western Australia. The pilot region will be expanded to include the south west region of Western Australia and the duration of the pilot will be extended by 12 months to 30 June 2012, subject to formal endorsement by the Western Australian Government.

The pilot is designed to encourage farmers and farm families to adopt self‑reliant approaches to managing farm risks and adjust to the impacts of climate change and reduced water availability.

This measure builds on the 2010‑11 Budget measure titled Drought policy reform — pilot of new measures in Western Australia.

Maintain funding for Quarantine Border Security — extension

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry
Australian Customs and Border Protection Service
Total

The Government will provide $425.4 million over three years from 2012‑13 to maintain funding for quarantine border protection activities while continuing to progress work towards reforming Australia's biosecurity system.

The funding includes $219.8 million for the Biosecurity Services Group and $205.6 million for the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service to maintain the enhanced level of quarantine screening in response to emerging quarantine risks and threats.

This measure involves funding of $140.6 million in 2012‑13, $141.8 million in 2013‑14 and $143.0 million in 2014‑15. Provision for this funding has already been included in the forward estimates.

See also the related expense measure titled Reform of Australia's biosecurity system — enhancement of Information Communication and Technology systems and the capital measure titled Future Post‑Entry Quarantine Arrangements — initial work in the Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry portfolio.

Reform of Australia's biosecurity system — enhancement of Information Communication and Technology systems

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry 4.2

The Government will provide $4.2 million in 2011‑12 for the development of a business case for the enhancement of the Information Communication and Technology systems for biosecurity activities, in partnership with the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service.

See also the related expense measure titled Maintain funding for Quarantine Border Security — extension in the Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry portfolio.

If www.budget.gov.au responds slowly or you are having trouble downloading a document, try one of the Budget Website Mirrors

Note: Where possible, Budget documents are available in HTML and for downloading in Portable Document Format(PDF). If you require further information on any of the tables or charts on this website, please contact The Treasury.