The Far North District Council is offering assistance to farmers experiencing severe financial hardship as a result of prolonged drought conditions earlier this year.
The council has agreed to defer up to two instalments of rates for a period of up to two years to assist farmers to get back onto a firmer financial footing.
To qualify for a rate deferral, applicants will need to have already qualified for the drought-related Rural Assistance Payments (RAP) programme.
The assistance the council has offered does not mean that the rates on properties suffering severe financial hardship will be written off- it means that farmers who qualify will have two years to make payment on two rates instalments before penalties for late payment are imposed.
A similar rates deferral option was also made available to businesses and residents who were unable to occupy their properties as a result of severe flooding in 2007.