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Financial support for people impacted by flooding

financial support flooding
ion McGarry captured this photo of water rising fast in Bundaberg North.

The Federal and State Governments have announced financial support packages for Bundaberg Region residents impacted by heavy rainfall and flooding associated with ex-Tropical Cyclone Seth.

Australian Government financial support

The Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment (AGDRP) and Disaster Recovery Allowance (DRA) will be available from Tuesday 11 January 2022 to support people in the local government areas of Bundaberg and Fraser Coast.

Federal Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt said a number of people in Hinkler had been impacted by flooding and storm damage, but financial assistance was available.

“Living in Queensland we know how volatile the weather can be, but as we have done in the past, we will come together and support one another as the clean-up and recovery begins,” Mr Pitt said.

“The Disaster Recovery Payment is a one-off, non-means tested payment of $1000 for eligible adults and $400 for eligible children. This payment is available to anyone in Hinkler who has suffered a significant loss, including a severely damaged or destroyed home or serious injury.

“The Disaster Recovery Allowance will provide a short-term income support payment to assist individuals whose income has been affected because of this disastrous event. The Allowance is available for up to 13 weeks, equivalent to the maximum rate of Jobseeker Payment or Youth Allowance.

“I encourage local residents impacted by the floods to check their eligibility and lodge a claim for assistance.”

Equivalent financial assistance will also be available to eligible New Zealand citizens (‘non-protected’ Special Category Visa, subclass 444 holders) affected by the storms and floods.

People can claim the Disaster Recovery Payment online through myGov. For the Disaster Recovery Allowance people will need to claim over the phone, by calling the Australian Government Emergency Information Line on 180 22 66.

To check your eligibility visit www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/disaster

Joint State and Federal financial support

Assistance measures for Bundaberg Region primary producers were also announced through the jointly funded Commonwealth-State Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA).

Minister for Emergency Management and National Recovery and Resilience, Senator the Hon Bridget McKenzie said the heavy rainfall and flooding caused widespread damage in Queensland’s Wide Bay-Burnett region.

“It’s been a very intense period,” Minister McKenzie said.

“… low interest loans of up to $250,000 are available to help flood impacted primary producers and small businesses in Bundaberg, Fraser Coast, Gympie, North Burnett and South Burnett to get back on their feet as soon as possible.

“The Australian and Queensland Governments will continue to monitor this developing flood event and will work together with all impacted communities as they recover and rebuild.”

Queensland Minister for Fire and Emergency Services Mark Ryan said record rainfalls in parts of Wide Bay-Burnett region had caused major damage and the broader region was bracing for further impacts.

“In recognition of the impact the floods are having on the local economy, freight subsidies of up to $5000 will also be made available to eligible primary producers in Bundaberg, Fraser Coast, Gympie, North Burnett and South Burnett who experienced inundation,” he said.

“Unfortunately, we have already seen people lose their lives in floodwaters and it’s a tragic reminder to all Queenslanders that if it’s flooded, forget it.

“Queensland’s emergency services staff continue to work around the clock in response to the ex-Tropical Cyclone Seth flooding and we will assist all impacted councils and communities.

“The activation of this DRFA assistance is the first for this event but we stand ready to provide extended assistance to ensure impacted communities receive all the support they need to recover,” he said.

For information on Personal Hardship Assistance, contact the Community Recovery Hotline 1800 173 349 or visit www.qld.gov.au/community/disasters-emergencies.

For more information on loans for primary producers and small businesses phone Queensland Rural and Industry Development Authority on 1800 623 946 or visit www.qrida.qld.gov.au.

For information on the freight subsidies visit www.daf.qld.gov.au or phone the DAF Customer Service Centre on 13 25 23.

Information on disaster assistance can be found on the Queensland Reconstruction Authority’s website at www.qra.qld.gov.au.