Timber producers impacted by hardwood shortages from flood-affected parts of state will receive support from the NSW Government to secure supplies from outside the region, thanks to a $10 million support package.
Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW Paul Toole said the industry, which generates hundreds of local jobs, will continue to play a crucial role in rebuilding impacted communities right along the Mid Coast and North Coast.
“The $10 million Hardwood Timber Haulage Subsidy Program will cover the cost for businesses to transport materials from outside their existing supply areas and get them into processing facilities,” Mr Toole said.
“This funding boost keeps locals in jobs while supplying high-quality timber for the construction industry as we continue to rebuild our flood-affected communities.”
Minister for Agriculture and Western NSW Dugald Saunders said the persistent wet weather has cut off access to state forests where timber is sustainably harvested.
“The damaged access to forests in NSW may take many months to repair, resulting in low or no harvesting activity and a critical lack of supply of hardwood resources that timber processing facilities would normally rely on,” Mr Saunders said.
“Our hardwood processors need urgent help to haul in good quality wood from outside the region.
“This investment will mean that eligible processing plants can claim $30 per tonne for the transport of construction grade timber sourced from alternate harvest sites.
“Those businesses can claim up to $500,000, which will help them continue to operate, keep their workers and ensure builders can push on and rebuild the homes that were destroyed and damaged by floods.
“This assistance will allow us to support the long-term recovery of our flood-impacted regions and will bridge the gap of diminished hardwood resources.”
The Hardwood Timber Haulage Subsidy Program is co-funded by the NSW and Australian Governments under the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements. Further information about the Hardwood Timber Haulage Subsidy Program and the application process will be available towards the end of this week.