Minister for Justice Michael Keenan and New South Wales Minister for Emergency Services Troy Grant announced that disaster assistance is available in response to the bushfires that started in Tenterfield on 8 September 2017.
Minister Keenan said the assistance is being provided through the jointly-funded Commonwealth-State Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA).
“The Australian and NSW governments are committed to working together to help the recovery of disaster affected communities,” Mr Keenan said.
Minister Grant said that NDRRA assistance is now available for eligible residents, small businesses and primary producers in the bushfire affected local government area of Tenterfield.
“We are also providing assistance to cover certain firefighting costs and for the restoration of damaged public infrastructure,” Mr Grant said.
Deputy Prime Minister and Member for New England, Barnaby Joyce, said the aid aimed to assist local residents and organisations get back on their feet.
“A little help can go a long way, so whether that’s assistance for damage to property and personal items or subsided freight for primary producers to transport livestock or fodder, it can all make a difference,” Mr Joyce said.
“We’re a pretty resilient bunch here in the New England and we’re a proud our lot too. Although many of those affected by these fires would prefer to do it on their own, I strongly encourage them to reach out and apply for this government assistance which will greatly enhance their chances of a speedy recovery.”
Assistance available under the NDRRA may include:
- Help for eligible people whose homes or belongings have been damaged
- Support for affected local councils to help with the costs of cleaning up and restoring damaged essential public assets
- Concessional interest rate loans for eligible small businesses, primary producers and non-profit organisations
- Freight subsidies for eligible primary producers, and
- Grants to eligible non-profit organisations.
For information on personal hardship and distress assistance, contact the Disaster Welfare Assistance Line on 1800 018 444.
To apply for a concessional loan, grant or freight subsidy, contact the NSW Rural Assistance Authority on 1800 678 593 or visit raa.nsw.gov.au
Further information on disaster assistance is available on the Australian Government’s Disaster Assist website disasterassist.gov.au and the NSW emergency information and response website at emergency.nsw.gov.au