The Victorian Farmers Federation (VFF) is demanding answers over the Victorian Government’s refusal to help local government councils impacted by the 2022 flood events across the state.
In a letter to Premier Daniel Andrews, VFF President Emma Germano questioned why the Victorian Government decided not to take up fast-tracked funding from the Commonwealth’s $1.8 billion Disaster Relief Funding Arrangements.
“The 2022 floods had disastrous impacts on regional communities and agricultural production.”
“The VFF has expressed its disappointment to the Premier following Victoria’s decision not to take up funding to help local government rebuild infrastructure that farming communities depend on.”
“We have sought clarification from the government as to their reasons for not taking up the funding opportunity, and how the government intends to provide immediate assistance to flood impacted councils.”
Ms Germano said farmers and local government councils were particularly frustrated with the lack of action on fixing damaged roads.
“The VFF has held discussions with representatives from local government across Northern Victoria who are desperately concerned by the lack of support being provided to them to fix critical infrastructure, such as the regional road network.”
“The Victorian Government’s inability to provide funding to these councils will only further hamper and delay recovery.”
“This in turn places additional burdens on farmers and freight transporters, increasing their costs and impacting the affordability of food for the whole community.”
“Victorian farmers are crying out for the government to take action and deliver immediate and meaningful funding to the local government sector in the aftermath of the floods,” Ms Germano said.