A decision announced on Tuesday by Prime Minister Scott Morrison to exclude Orange from $1 million of funding for eligible communities affected by drought will be challenged by mayor Reg Kidd.
Cr Kidd confirmed on Wednesday he had issued letters to each member of the drought response agency, which met in Orange this week, asking for the application to be reconsidered.
He said he would "strongly dispute" Orange had not been affected by drought but surrounding areas relied more on agriculture.
Fixing anomalies like this needs to be on the agenda of drought agencies and those overseeing themAndrew Gee
"If you compare us to the local governments around us, Orange is not in the same boat," he said.
It was announced on Tuesday, Bathurst, Dubbo, Cabonne, Blayney, Parkes, Forbes, Cowra, Mid-Western and Oberon will all received the federal funding.
The decision came after the rejection of Orange City Council's recent bid for a share in the Morrison government's $1.6 million Community Sport Infrastructure Grant Program.
A program which has come under investigation by the Auditor-General amid accusations deputy Nationals leader Bridget McKenzie's misallocated the funds.
Orange City Council applied for money to development and upgrade Glenroi Oval facilities and supported the Orange Triathlon Club's submission for a Gosling Creek bike path grant.
While both applications were rejected without explanation, Bathurst council received $50,000, Dubbo council clubs in Wellington received a combined $46,000, Parkes Tennis Club received $25,000, Forbes Shire Council received $178,000 and Oberon Golf Club received $47,300.
Of the others from the region who received drought funding, Cabonne, Blayney and Cowra councils did not apply for the sports grants, and Mid-Western Regional Council's application was unsuccessful.
Ms McKenzie was also responsible for the pre-election round of drought funding.
The Canberra Times revealed on Friday 14 councils were announced as eligible during the 2019 election campaign - after caretaker period had commenced.
But six of the 14 areas did not meet the 17 per cent agricultural employment threshold and eight also had a rainfall deficiency of less than 50 per cent.
Cr Kidd said a suggestion Orange had been punished politically was "not true in any way shape or form."
"My job as a councillor is to put in as many submissions as we possible can whether that be state or federal and we're very, very successful."
Cr Kidd pointed to a number of projects which had received federal funding in the past 12 months, including $10 million for the Orange Regional Conservatorium, $4 million for the Orange Regional Gallery, $700,000 for lighting in the CBD and $320,000 for footpaths.
Federal member for Calare Andrew Gee said Orange had missed out on drought funding because the boundaries were so tightly drawn around the city, it had a relatively low percentage of farmland and it needed at least 17 per cent of the workforce employed in agriculture to qualify.
He said there needed to be some flexibility for councils in Orange's position and a discretion for them to apply in certain circumstances.
"We've often heard that you can't have a one-size-fits-all approach to this drought, because everyone's experience is different. Well that should apply to council drought funding as well," he said.
"Fixing anomalies like this needs to be on the agenda of drought agencies and those overseeing them."
"I'll be making sure that it is at the highest levels of government."
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