The Federal and NSW Governments have this afternoon announced a $434.7 million funding package to support flood-affected communities, with support mechanisms in place to help farmers, businesses and local councils recover and rebuild.
Small businesses and not-for-profits devastated by flooding will be able to apply for grants of up to $50,000 through NSW Government agencies, while that figure rises to $75,000 for primary producers.
The program will be demand driven and applicants that have phone or internet access can now register through Service NSW.
The funds will also be directed to help communities clean up and remove damage and debris.
"We will be there to help farmers, small businesses and every community in New South Wales to get back on their feet as soon as possible when flood waters recede,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison said.
"Farmers will need to restock and rebuild and small businesses will need help replacing damaged goods and shop fronts, and when more support is needed, more support will be given," he said.
"I have already asked the New South Wales Premier to provide my Government with a proposal for a second support package to ensure all communities get the support they need."
The PM added work was ongoing with the Queensland Government as well to determine what support will be made available under Category D funding.
"This initial package is in addition to the federally funded $1,000 disaster relief payment and the 13-week income replacement for employees and small business, which to date has already paid out almost $63 million in a matter of days," he said.
New South Wales Premier Dominic Perrottet said the NSW Government stood ready to support communities hit hard by the floods across the state.
"We activated these measures during the 2021 floods, and we have done so again – they are large grants that will get much-needed funds to people quickly to provide some relief and assistance,” Premier Perrottet said.
“We know these supports will have an immediate positive effect and I would encourage anyone in NSW impacted by these awful floods to please contact Service NSW and find out what you are eligible for.”
Seventeen LGAs in the state have been declared as disaster areas and are eligible for support through Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA), in addition to 21 LGAs in Queensland including today's announced extension to the Gold Coast and Gladstone.
Minister for Emergency Management and National Recovery and Resilience Bridget McKenzie said the activation of extraordinary Category D grant assistance under the DRFA was vital to help kick start the recovery of affected primary producers and small businesses.
“The Commonwealth and NSW Governments are focused on giving small businesses and not-for-profits the tools they need to clean-up, rebuild and keep operating,” Minister McKenzie said.
“We will continue to work with the NSW Government to roll out ongoing targeted support for communities impacted by these devastating storms and floods.”
NSW Deputy Premier Paul Toole said a phased approach to support was being adopted to ensure communities had the resources and support they needed at every stage from response to recovery.
We know it’s going to be a long road to recovery for many of our regional communities and this targeted funding will ensure they get immediate assistance as well as in the weeks and months ahead,” Deputy Premier Toole said.
“In addition to the funding now available, Service NSW offers a one-stop shop for all information and support on disaster assistance by phoning 13 77 88 or online via service.nsw.gov.au.”
New South Wales Minister for Emergency Services and Resilience Steph Cooke said the mass clean-up is already underway and recovery grants have been designed to kick-start recovery.
“Many areas are still in the emergency phase and many more are unfortunately at risk of flooding. We are focused on delivering as much support as possible to impacted communities right across the State,” Cooke said.
“While the acute response continues, we are working tirelessly in the background preparing for the significant clean-up and recovery ahead of us.”
The LGAs that are eligible for DRFA in NSW are: Armidale, Ballina, Bellingen, Byron, Clarence Valley, Coffs Harbour, Glen Innes Severn, Hornsby, Kempsey, Kyogle, Lismore, Nambucca, Port Macquarie/Hastings, Richmond, Tenterfield, The Hills and Tweed.
In QLD, the LGAs where people can apply for the program's hardship grants are: Brisbane, Bundaberg, Fraser Coast, Gladstone, Gold Coast, Goondiwindi, Gympie, Ipswich, Lockyer Valley, Logan, Moreton Bay, Noosa, North Burnett, Redland, Scenic Rim, Somerset, South Burnett, Southern Downs, Sunshine Coast, Toowoomba and Western Downs.
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