STATE governments should pay council rates and provide crown lease holidays for farmers in drought, says federal Drought Minister David Littleproud.
"It's just not fair to charge rent on unproductive land," said Mr Littleproud, who is calling on all states to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with their farmers and regional communities, suffering the worst drought on record.
"They can also give payroll tax exemptions to businesses dependent on agriculture, like the local meat works, because their drought is coming as soon as it rains.
"The states also own our power companies and can offer farmers a discounted rate through a food and fibre tariff."
Mr Littleproud said while some did provide a reasonable level of assistance, others provided nothing. All states needed to do more, he said.
In terms of assistance, the Federal Government leads the way providing up to $224,000 a year in support to farmers.
It's just not fair to charge rent on unproductive land.
NSW comes in second with $69,175, followed by Queensland on $39,129, Victoria $25,235, and Tasmania $7500. However, Western Australia, the Northern Territory and South Australia provide no assistance, although that state is currently reviewing its support package.
"This is bigger than any one person, or any one government - we all need to play as one team," Mr Littleproud said.
"Agriculture is a strategically important industry and we all need to work together to bring farmers through the drought.
"We've stepped up our response as the drought has stepped up. We need the states to join us.
"I'm committed to working with the states so all our farmers get the support they need, no matter where they live."
Meanwhile, 67.4 per cent of Queensland was officially declared to be in drought on Tuesday.
Agriculture Minister Mark Furner said Fraser, Gold Coast, Gympie, Logan, Moreton, Noosa, Redland and Sunshine Coast regional councils had been added to the area, effective December 1.
CLICK HERE to access drought assistance in Queensland.