Fees delayed to help flood recovery

Published Monday, 11 February, 2013 at 08:08 AM

Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry
The Honourable John McVeigh

Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry John McVeigh has announced fee relief for primary producers and businesses impacted by the recent floods to help with recovery.

Mr McVeigh said the aim was to give businesses a temporary extension on payment of some fees and charges they would normally incur, until they were back in production.

“My department administers a range of fees, particularly in the areas of biosecurity services and fisheries licences,” he said.

“Producers in areas who are declared eligible under “Category C” of the Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA) will qualify for fee relief.”

DAFF will vary fee payments for those suffering hardship in flooded areas, including these Local Government Areas:

  • Bundaberg Regional Council
  • Fraser Coast Regional Council
  • Gympie Regional Council
  • Lockyer Valley Regional Council
  • North Burnett Regional Council.

Fee relief will also be available to producers in any additional areas that may be declared under “Category C” of the NDRRA.

Fees to be deferred for three months until 30 April 2013:

·         Biosecurity Qld laboratory and testing fees

·         Plant Health Inspection and Certification (PHIC) fees and Interstate Certification Assurance (ICA) fees

Affected fishers can contact Fisheries Qld to discuss deferring payments including:

·         commercial fishing licence fees

·         fishery access fees

·         quota fees (where applicable).

The Department of Environment and Heritage Protection has confirmed that environmental fees have also been deferred, for those businesses suffering hardship in flood-declared areas.

DAFF will apply this for intensive livestock operations such as cattle feedlots and piggeries.

With regard to the forestry sector, DAFF will assess payment difficulties on a case by case basis in regard to monthly payments of accounts for timber and quarry royalties, as per normal procedures.

Timber processors and quarry operators can contact DAFF Forest Products and request their particular circumstances be considered.

Other fee deferrals are also being offered.

For example, DAFF’s Beef Breeding Services at Rockhampton will hold over January and February invoices, after which, flood affected producers should contact the department if further deferral is required. 

The Tick Fever Centre at Wacol, which provides tick fever vaccine for cattle producers, will defer vaccine charges for flood-affected producers who need vaccine to move cattle, as part of the relief measures.  

As well, Mr McVeigh said Safe Food Production Queensland, a Statutory Body in his portfolio, was also offering extensions on fee payments.

For more information visit www.daff.qld.gov.au or call 13 25 23.

 [ENDS] 11 February 2013

Media: Lachlan Millar – 0407 394 580