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Farm water program topped up for SW Sask.

Saskatchewan’s farm and ranch water infrastructure program (FRWIP) will get up to an extra $9 million in federal cash to support projects in the province’s dry southwest.

On top of the province’s $6 million in FRWIP funding, the extra cash, to be delivered through the federal/provincial AgriRecovery program, brings total FRWIP funds to $15 million.

FRWIP pays to help set up emergency water supplies, permanent on-farm water supplies and community wells for ranchers and farmers.

“These measures address short-term needs while providing long-term mitigating solutions,” the federal government said in a release Saturday after an announcement by David Anderson, a southwestern Saskatchewan MP.

Applications for community well projects will be mailed directly to rural municipalities in the designated drought region of Saskatchewan’s southwest.

Application forms for on-farm projects are expected to be available at RM offices, on the provincial ag ministry’s website or by calling the program toll-free number, 1-877-874-5365.

The application deadline is Dec. 3. Eligible projects must be initiated after March 19 and completed before Nov. 1 this year.

AgriRecovery is the new disaster relief framework (part of the business risk management pillar of the new “Growing Forward” federal/provincial ag policy framework) that’s expected to allow governments to respond quickly when disaster hits a specific region.

AgriRecovery assistance, shared on a 60/40 basis with the affected province, complements other federal initiatives, including tax deferral for livestock producers and federal assistance under the Canada/Saskatchewan Water Supply Expansion Program (CSWSEP), the federal government said.

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