Kaikōura MP welcomes extra support for drought affected North Canterbury

Kaikoura news
Thursday, May 21, 2015

Kaikōura MP Stuart Smith, along with Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy, met yesterday with drought affected farmers in Cheviot, North Canterbury. The North Canterbury area is still feeling the effects of the dry conditions.

“The recent rainfall largely bypassed the North Canterbury area, and so farmers there are still really struggling with drought”, says Mr Smith.
Mr Smith welcomes the announcement made by Minister Guy that an extra $20,000 is being allocated to the North Canterbury Rural Support Trust. This will help the Trust with more intensive local activities, including individual visits and community events.

“I really appreciated having the opportunity to meet with local farmers in Cheviot yesterday with Minister Guy and hear about their situation first-hand. We recognise the very difficult conditions they are dealing with, and the extra funding for the Trust is very welcome.

“Farmers are managing incredibly well in such a tough time, and are preparing appropriately. However during such hardship I encourage those who need it to seek help”, says Mr Smith.

Support is available from the Rural Support Trust and others. For those facing extreme hardship Rural Assistance Payments (RAP) are also available.

North Canterbury now has the highest soil moisture deficit in the country and has recorded the lowest rainfall for January to March since 1972.