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Andrews backtracks on subsidy for bushfire hay run volunteers

A transport subsidy scheme for volunteers who organised the delivery of desperately needed fodder to bushfire-affected farmers is over budget and out of money.

It’s been revealed today the Andrews Labor Government allocated just $600,000 to the transport subsidy.

After the scheme’s budget blew out to $1.8 million, volunteers were told on February 28 that “funding is limited and is allocated on a first in, first out basis, until funds are exhausted”.

In State Parliament last week, the Liberal Nationals pushed the Premier to commit to providing adequate funding to the subsidy.

It followed reports that a claim for nearly $440,000 for donated hay delivered by the Timboon and Heyfield Lions clubs was likely to be rejected.

Despite underfunding the scheme, Andrews claimed he would ensure “anyone who is owed any amount of money is paid” – the Premier will be held to account.

Comment attributable to Shadow Minister for Bushfire Recovery Peter Walsh

Underfunding desperately needed bushfire recovery efforts is a despicable new low for the Andrews Labor Government.

Community groups and transport operators have generously supported our farmers to get back on their feet, only to have Daniel Andrews turn his back on them.

When Labor runs out of money, it comes after yours.

With $4 billion in cuts looming, volunteers who supported bushfire-affected communities are paying the price for Labor’s failure to manage the budget.

The Liberal Nationals will continue to hold the Premier to account for every cent that’s owed to bushfire-affected communities and the generous Victorians who came to their aid when they needed it most.

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