Earthquake Relief Fund FAQs

How much could I be eligible for and when?

  • You can put in a claim for the total amount of uninsurable infrastructure repair.
  • The total damage must exceed $12,000 for you to be considered for assistance.
  • Any grant will be a contribution towards repairs, up to a maximum of 50% of the cost.
  • An excess of $5000 will be deducted from the 50% that is eligible for funding. The amount awarded may be adjusted if eligible funding requests exceed the $4million available.
  • The maximum any one entity could receive from the Fund is $50,000.
  • Not everyone who applies will be able to receive a grant.
  • Successful applicants will be notified as soon as practical after 31 March 2017 about how to get their grant paid out. You will need to provide a GST invoice, made out to the Ministry for Primary Industries.

The assessment formula to calculate the maximum allowable grant is:

Amount of uninsurable damage not met by other grants minus minimum farmer contribution of 50% minus excess of $5000 equals maximum grant that will be assessed within total funds available.

The maximum grants calculated would then be totalled against available funds and pro-rated if necessary to fit within the funding available.

What about improvements or changes?

Funding is generally limited to replacing like with like, and to the length of tracks, etc., actually damaged in the earthquake. Cheaper alternatives may be chosen as long as the functionality is the same. Infrastructure may be moved to accommodate changes in landform due to the earthquake.

Can I apply for costs of transport, labour and equipment?

Delivery of materials to site of damage can be claimed. Helicopter costs will only be eligible for claims if there is no practical, cheaper alternative.

You can claim for own on-farm labour diverted to recovery, provided you keep records of how the labour was used, including time and what would normally be paid for that labour. The labour rate that can be claimed will be capped at $30 per hour. 

You can claim for the use of farm equipment at the hourly rate that fairly reflects operating costs for that machine, and this would be less than it would cost to hire equipment of the equivalent size.

Who is on the panel?

Cabinet has appointed a panel to review the applications. These include the three Mayors and a cross-section of rural expertise:

  • Winton Dalley, Mayor Hurunui District Council
  • Winston Gray, Mayor Kaikoura District Council
  • John Leggett, Mayor Marlborough District Council
  • Katie Milne, Federated Farmers representative
  • Grant McFadden, North Canterbury Rural Support Trust
  • Jansen Travis, Consultant Tambo New Zealand (North Canterbury)
  • Greg Sheppard, Consultant Sheppard Agriculture (Marlborough)
  • Ian Brown, Environment Canterbury Principal Strategy Advisor, Land Management
  • Alan Johnson, Marlborough District Council Environmental Science and Monitoring Manager
  • Jeremy Neild, Ministry for Primary Industries Policy Agent
  • Sir Mark Solomon Ngāi Tahu

The panel has responsibility for assessing applications against agreed government criteria, and reporting back on how the funding had been spent once final decisions have been made.

How are fencing costs identified?

The Assessment Panel may choose to use district average rates for fencing in assessing total requests for funding. The length of fencing needed to be repaired or replaced should be shown on the application form.

What about reseeding?

Funding will not be allocated for reseeding of hillside slip scars (this is because it is an economically marginal exercise). However, if slip tailings cover cultivatable land then the restoration of crops and pasture on that land may be claimed. A district average rate for pasture establishment may be used. The area required to be cultivated to restore pasture or crops should be shown on the application form.

The restoration of pasture and crops includes the cost of growing it to the stage it was in November (i.e. including relevant fertilizer and pesticides).

Forestry re-establishment only includes the cost of replanting, not subsequent silviculture.