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Primary Producers

Home Recovery (DRFA-WA)
Primary Producers

Assistance provided to primary producers under DRFAWA is managed by the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD).

For full details and application forms refer to the DPIRD website.

Interest rate subsidy

An interest rate subsidy may be available to primary producers for new loans to repair/replace assets that have been damaged or destroyed as a direct result of an eligible disaster, and for which this DRFAWA assistance measure has been activated.

The loan must be provided by an Authorised Deposit Taking Institution (ADTI)

The funds can be used to repair damage caused by the eligible disaster event, for carry on purposes to implement the next season's production program, and/or to replace livestock lost in the disaster.

Primary producers must demonstrate, to the satisfaction of DPIRD that funds are not available from within their own resources. It would be expected that primary producers would have committed all liquid assets and credit sources for normal operation of the business, and will need to access extra borrowings to recover from the disaster. This will be assessed mainly from the Statement of Assets and Liabilities as at the time of application, with reference to the applicant if additional information is required. An increase in the level of agreed borrowing would likely qualify for the interest subsidy support.

DRFAWA provides an interest rate subsidy, currently set at 4 per cent with the subsidy payments:

  • Capped at a maximum of $6,000 (being 4 per cent of a loan maximum of $150,000); and
  • For a maximum period of 10 years, of which the first two years may be free of capital repayments at the discretion of the ADTI.

In cases where no capital repayments or minimal capital repayments are made from Year three onwards, and to be consistent with those who have made capital repayments, a 'notional' deduction of 1/10th of the original loan principal is taken for each year.

DRFAWA will fund the interest rate subsidy, annually in advance, based upon the satisfactory submission of a claim form after the anniversary date of the loan commencement (i.e. the loan drawdown/disbursement). The claim form must be supported by evidence of the loan balance at this time. Evidence can be a copy of the relevant loan account statement showing the actual loan balance, on or shortly after the anniversary date of the loan drawdown/disbursement.

Any changes to the loan are required to be notified immediately to DFES.

Freight subsidy (reimbursement)

This assistance reimburses the primary producer a maximum of 50 per cent of the costs of transporting any of the following items as a direct result of an eligible disaster:

  • Livestock
  • Fodder or water for livestock, and
  • Building or fencing equipment or machinery.

Fencing subsidy

This assistance reimburses the primary producer 100 per cent of the costs associated with any of the following:

  • Restoration/replacement of fencing (to pre-disaster standard) where the fencing has been deliberately dismantled or damaged due to counter disaster operations activities undertaken in order to combat the eligible natural disaster event, and/or
  • Reimbursement of the costs of materials only (to pre-disaster standard) to repair/replace 'boundary' fencing, damaged/lost fencing as a direct result of the eligible natural disaster event.

This measure is only available where fencing adjoins a major road/rail transport corridor and where the roaming of livestock may present a danger to the travelling public (i.e. the aim being to preserve public safety).

In respect of reimbursement for fencing materials, for a claim to be considered under this relief measure, the primary producer must demonstrate to DPIRD's satisfaction that at the time of the eligible disaster event, the property was at that time being used to hold or agist livestock. A property that was used solely for cropping purposes at the time of the incident resulting in the claim would not be eligible for assistance under the DRFAWA.

As the intent of this measure is to ensure public safety, to be eligible, all works must be undertaken as soon as is practicable after the impact of the natural disaster event. It must also be noted that where a claimant has insurance, and the insurance policy includes fencing, in these circumstances the claim must be lodged with the insurer, and not via DRFAWA.

Professional advice grant (reimbursement of fees)

Primary producers may apply for reimbursement of fees to obtain professional advice directly relating to addressing issues arising from an eligible natural disaster event

The maximum reimbursement available is $1,500.

You may seek advice from a farm business consultant such as a member of the Australian Association of Agriculture Consultants (WA Inc.), a member of a professional accounting body or an appropriate professional. Advice may relate to business or financial matters, hydrological or soil conservation issues, feed analysis or other stock health issues. The reimbursement is not available to meet costs of employing professional advice for other purposes.

Eligibility criteria

An applicant is the business entity (represented by the partners, directors or shareholders) who are the primary producers and must meet the eligibility criteria as detailed below.

Applicants must:

  • (a) Operate a commercial scale farming, pastoral, horticultural, or fishing business and be affected by the eligible disaster;
  • (b) Have been operating for at least one (1) year
  • (c) Be registered with the Australian Taxation Office as a Primary Producer, hold an Australian Business Number, been operational for at least one year and have been in existence in the specified area prior to and including the date of the event
  • (d) Either own the farm land or hold a minimum five year agreement to share-farm or lease the property for the purpose of primary production, OR own and operate under a fishing license or have a three year lease of a fishing licence
  • (e) Devote at least 75 per cent of their labour to the primary production business
  • (f) Confirm that the applicant's business generates at least 50 per cent of its income from the affected enterprise
  • (g) Lodge a claim (including the application form, suppliers' invoices, evidence of payment and a tax invoice to DPIRD) within six months of the declaration date of the disaster.
  • (h) Demonstrate that own resources are not available to the business to recover from the disaster
  • (i) Confirm the items claimed are not covered by insurance or an industry compensation fund
  • (j) Confirm that the primary production business was severely affected by the declared eligible disaster.

Primary producers seeking fencing assistance will have to also demonstrate that at the time of the declared event the land was used to hold or agist livestock and it is next to a major road or rail transport corridor.

Application procedure

Applications are to be submitted online using the DPIRD online Grant Management System. The supporting evidence to be submitted includes:

  • The suppliers' invoices
  • Evidence of payment, and
  • A tax invoice to the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD).


Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD)

Rural Business Development Unit

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