News

Subsidy cut ‘heartless’

By Country News

A federal minister has described as ‘‘heartless’’ a Queensland Government decision to slash a transport subsidy for farmers in the years to come.

Subsidies to help farmers cover the cost of trucking in fodder and water will be axed when their properties’ drought classifications are removed.

About 65 per cent of the state is in drought.

Cutting the funds will force farmers to better prepare for drought conditions and stop them from making fiscally irresponsible decisions, Queensland Agriculture Minister Mark Furner said.

But Federal Drought Minister David Littleproud said the move would tear down communities.

‘‘This is another senseless act from a heartless government,’’ Mr Littleproud said.

Properties that become drought declared after June next year will not get the subsidies, and those that have come out of a dry spell but are later plunged back into drought will be supported in other ways.