Spotlight on drought in Parkes electorate
It’s important that my Federal colleagues see for themselves the devastating impact of the drought. That’s why I was so pleased to host the Federal Agriculture Minister, Senator Bridget McKenzie in Moree over the weekend.
I introduced the Minister to well-known Moree businessman, Col Thomas of Thomas-Lee Motorcycles. Col, like many others, understands the enormous pressures the ongoing relentless drought is inflicting on business. The latest round of drought funding includes a new program for small businesses dependent on agriculture, with loans worth up to $500,000 that can be used to pay staff, buy equipment and pay finance.
Mayor of Moree Plains Shire Council, Katrina Humphries, also articulated very well the challenges we face due to the drought, and I was grateful for her input. Another round of funding under the Drought Communities Programme of $1 million each will be made available to all local councils in my electorate.
Drought hit communities will get a significant boost from the Federal Coalition Government’s latest $709 million drought relief package. This package is designed to support farmers, small businesses and communities. More information is available at www.markcoulton.com.au/media
Photo Caption: Member for Parkes Mark Coulton hosted Minister for Agriculture, Senator Bridget McKenzie, in Moree over the weekend to highlight the ongoing impacts of the drought.
Business Forum a success
It was a terrific day in Condobolin for the Western Business Forum on 4 November. The Forum was well attended with very interesting speakers who touched on the positive and vibrant future for Central Western New South Wales.
I was pleased to get behind this event by helping to deliver a $44,737 grant under the Government’s successful Building Better Regions Fund, which I announced earlier this year.
Projects such as this one make our regional communities even better places to live, work and raise a family, and in particular give our local businesses new networking and investment opportunities.
Congratulations to Growing Lachlan, Lower Lachlan Community Services, Regional Development Australia (RDA) Central West, Lachlan Shire Council, and others involved in making this a productive and fruitful event.
Veteran Card to say ‘thank you’
Thousands of offers are now available to Veteran Card holders in my electorate from businesses across Australia, as part of the Australian Defence Veterans’ Covenant which passed Parliament recently.
The new Veteran Card will be available to all veterans as a practical demonstration of respect and recognition for their service.
Much like the lapel pin gives everyday Australians the opportunity to recognise veterans and thank them for their service, the offers available through the veteran card allow the business community to show its thanks.
Our Government is committed to putting veterans and their families first and we provide more than $11 billion every year in support of this.
For more information on the offers available to Veteran Card holders, visit www.apod.com.au
Smart Farming grants
Farmers and Landcare groups in the Parkes electorate can apply for funding of up to $50,000 under round three of the Australian Government’s Smart Farms Small Grants program.
If you’ve got an innovative idea for farming, this could be your opportunity to turn it into on-the-ground projects.
These small grants can help our farmers, landholders and Landcare groups source funding to help improve natural resource management so the environment, communities and regional economies all benefit.
Applications are open until 19 December. For more information and to apply visit the Community Grants Hub website www.communitygrants.gov.au