The small trickle of water left in the Balonne River at St George is swiftly drying up as the drought continues across the west.
The small trickle of water left in the Balonne River at St George is swiftly drying up as the drought continues across the west. Contributed

Forum farmers’ chance to question minister

WHILE Tropical Cyclone Dylan dumped good rain in the north, farmers west were praying the winds would ease and the rain settle in.

Many took to social media to report small rainfalls overnight Thursday, mainly in the north-west regions of Queensland.

It is the first time there have been suggestions and reports of rain for many for months.

And although grape farmers may have been seeing a small benefit from the dry conditions, graziers are still doing it tough.

AgForce Queensland vice president Ian Burnett said any rain that spread to the west from the cyclone would be welcome.

"Any rain will be beneficial, whether it's a drought breaker will depend on how much and what follow-up rain will occur," he said.

"For grazing and grain, certainly (the rain) will be at the right time for them.

"They've been hanging out for some rain in a lot of areas for up to two years."

St George will today play host to Federal Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce as he presents the government's response to the regional crisis.

The state's Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry representatives, as well as rural counselling and Centrelink agents will also be at the meeting, from 10am at the town's Civic Centre.

The Cranky Cockies, a group of concerned rural producers, will put questions to Mr Joyce and other governmental representatives during the public forum following the meeting.

"The minister is aware of the unfolding tsunami in rural Australia and is coming to support us," a spokesman said.

"We have this opportunity to share our problems with the minister."

Almost 70percent of the state remains in drought.



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