Southeast Queensland businesses hit by floods given access to emergency loans

Southeast Queensland businesses hit by floods given access to emergency loans

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Businesses hit by the latest storm deluge affecting southeast Queensland are being offered emergency loans by the state and federal governments to help get them back on their feet.

The assistance is available for affected businesses and not-for-profit organisations in the Gold Coast, Scenic Rim and Logan local government areas to assist with the repair and recovery of essential equipment and for loss of income.

These three regional council areas in the state’s southeast have been hit hardest by intense rainfall of up to 350mm in some locations over the past two days, compounding the storm damage and ongoing power outrages that hit the region hard over Christmas.

Primary producers will also be given access freight subsidies to alleviate the costs of moving stock and operating materials.

The initiatives, provided through the joint commonwealth-state Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements, have been announced in the wake of personal hardship grants for individuals announced last week.

“To get impacted southeast Queenslanders back on their feet, we are providing support as quickly as the need is identified,” says Murray Watt, the Federal Minister for Emergency Management.

“This assistance will help eligible small businesses, primary producers and community organisations across the region recover and return to operations.

“The Commonwealth and State Government have already acted swiftly to provide personal hardship payments and other support mechanisms to impacted residents right across Logan, Scenic Rim and Gold Coast.”

Disaster assistance loans of up to $250,000 are available for producers and small businesses, and $100,000 for not-for-profits, to repair or replace damaged assets such as plant and equipment, to repair premises, or to replace stock and maintain liquidity.

Essential Working Capital Loans of up to $100,000 are available for producers, small businesses and not-for-profits to allow for the continuation of operations, including paying wages, rents or rates, purchasing items such as fuel, fodder and water, or for the transportation of livestock and produce.

“Small businesses are the backbone of our communities, and this support will help them rebuild, recover and get back on track,” says Lance McCallum, Queensland’s Small Business Minister.

“Today we are also releasing a new Natural Disaster Business Survey to help quantify and detail the impacts of this severe weather event on small businesses.

“Insights from this survey will be invaluable to help prepare for future events and determine if additional support might be required, and I encourage as many affected small businesses as possible to complete it. 

“The Queensland Small Business Commissioner is also waiving mediation fees for impacted small businesses – a saving of $371 for access to mediation and help to resolve any leasing disputes quickly and affordably.”

Meanwhile, the Insurance Council of Australia last week declared a ‘significant event’ for parts of Queensland, NSW and Victoria impacted by severe storms between 23 December and Boxing Day.

The council says this has triggered preliminary extreme weather processes by insurers to assess and monitor the insurance claims impact of the events, which included flash floods, hailstorms and damaging winds.

Last week, more than 7,500 claims were received by insurers related to the storms across the three states but more are expected following he latest deluge to hit southeast Queensland.

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