The New South Wales government has announced that a rebate is now available to claim for households and small businesses affected by the mouse plague.
As part of the government’s $150 million Mouse Control Program, eligible households can claim up to $500 and small businesses up to $1,000 for the cost of mouse baits, traps, and cleaning materials bought after Feb. 1, 2021.
“These rodents haven’t just impacted farmers and crops, they have also been a scourge on homes and businesses right across the regions,” Deputy Premier John Barilaro said. “Fighting this plague has come at a financial cost and this rebate is putting money back in the pockets of hard-working families and business owners.
Households and businesses can only receive the rebate once, so Barilaro said he encouraged those who have spent near the maximum amount available to make their claims as soon as possible.
NSW Agriculture Minister Adam Marshall said primary producers who lived where they worked could be eligible to claim up to $1,000 to assist in the cost of protecting their premises.
“Farmers know how to protect their crops and are well prepared to meet a potential mouse surge as we draw closer to the spring harvest and this rebate will help them to also safeguard their homes,” Marshall said.
“By the end of the month, primary producers will also be able to claim a 50 percent rebate on purchases of zinc phosphide-based bait, to a maximum of $10,000, through the Rural Assistance Authority.”
NSW Farmers previously called on the government to provide 50 percent rebates for zinc phosphide baits, up to $25,000, saying it was the “simplest, safest, and most timely” assistance for farmers.
The mouse plague has been affecting Aussies since September 2020 and has caused widespread devastation to crops, vehicles and homes.
The NSW government previously secured 5,000 litres of bromadiolone, one of the world’s strongest rodent pesticides, and had been expecting approval for use of the chemical before the distribution to farmers.
However, on June 23, the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) rejected the state government’s emergency application for the use of the “napalm-like poison” for mice.
“The APVMA’s primary concern is environmental safety, particularly in relation to animals that eat mice,” APVMA CEO Lisa Croft said.