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Government's Rural Fund Welcomed

Clayton Cosgrove, Member of Parliament for Waimakariri, today welcomed the establishment of a Sustainable Farming Fund.

The fund is part of the Government's commitment to rural communities and their well-being and is good news for people in rural areas like Rangiora and Oxford.

Mr Cosgrove said, “the funds launch was the most important measure announced for farming and rural communities in this year's Budget.”

The contestable fund would provide financial support through grants for help in solving community problems, thereby enhancing environmental, economic, and social outcomes.

More than $5 million is available from the fund this year and the Government intends to increase the amount in future years. The fund is intended to help communities work out which projects would help them. For example, rather than fund a particular project, grants from the fund could be used to pay for feasibility studies to ascertain whether it was worth it for the community to put its money into that project.

The fund is complementary to other Government initiatives – particularly the regional development strategy and the environmental programmes underway.

Mr Cosgrove said that Labour had promised before the election to boost funding for sustainable land management initiatives.

"Now the Government is delivering on that promise."

ENDS

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