At the November Monthly Meeting Armidale Regional Council resolved pay local suppliers more quickly to help ease the financial strain being experienced by business during the current drought.
Suppliers in the Armidale LGA will now be paid within five business days of receiving invoices. Councillors hoped this reduction from 30-days would assist the region's small to medium-sized businesses.
"Further pruning that turnaround time for small to medium-sized business will require significant adjustments by our professional finance team," said Mayor Simon Murray.
The resolution came just after the Member for New England, Barnaby Joyce, welcomed the opening of funding applications under the Drought Communities Program for all 10 drought-affected councils in his electorate, opening the way for more funding of $1 million each.
"This is another $1 million for every council in the New England, in addition to the $1 million they each received in the first round of the program," Mr Joyce said.
"Mayors from across the electorate have told me how well this assistance has been received by helping to prop up local business, support jobs and drive new wealth back into the New England."
Council CEO Susan Law has said, as one of the affected council's, Armidale was invited to apply and had nominated those "shovel ready" projects already in the pipeline for funding.
She said those projects that potentially provided the most stimulation the local economy were given priority.
"We're looking at projects which can be completed by using local suppliers and providers, " Mrs Law said.
"It's important to keep the local businesses going, and we're taking that very seriously.
"We've had a number of projects and work that we normally do at this time of the year not able to be done because we don't have the water. Such as the gravel re-sheeting and things like that. So, we do have some resources that we can put into these projects."