$10 million to build small business resilience across North Queensland

$10 million has been announced under the jointly funded Commonwealth-Queensland Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA) to help flood affected small businesses in North and North West Queensland.

Minister for Employment and Small Business Shannon Fentiman in Townsville today announced the funding will include $10,000 small business grants alongside flood affected small businesses at Fairfield Shopping Centre.

“It’s fantastic to see so many businesses back up and running after the floods, but there are also still a lot of businesses struggling,” Ms Fentiman said.

“Supporting small businesses to reopen as soon as possible will assist the entire community to get back on their feet and contribute to the long-term recovery of Townsville and the wider region.

“That’s why today’s announcement of in disaster recovery support is so important, with the $10 million package to include grants of up to $10,000 to assist businesses to plan for the future and increase resilience with assistance such as vital floodproofing measures, implementing cloud-based software and data solutions, business growth strategies, as well as some building, plant and equipment repairs.

Member for Mundingburra Coralee O’Rourke said this funding will be able to reach more businesses to assist them in their recovery.

“As part of this funding we have introduced additional $10,000 grants that will be expanded to eligible small businesses across 14 Local Government Areas to assist with business planning or to explore other options to make their business more resilient and sustainable,” Mrs O’Rourke said.

Member for Townsville Scott Stewart said funding to repair building, plant or equipment may also be available in circumstances where impacted businesses have not been eligible for other disaster recovery funding.

“This $10 million package will also go towards a small business disaster preparedness and adaptation program, specialist counselling and mental health support, dedicated Mentoring for Growth sessions and workshops, an expanded Go Local advertising campaign and funding for local small business support services, such as the Small Business Recovery Centre, for another two years,” Mr Stewart said.

Ms Fentiman joined Queensland Small Business Champion Maree Adshead and Townsville business owners at Café Bambini in Fairfield Central Shopping Centre, which has reopened after damage from the monsoon trough meant the business had to close and complete a new fit-out.

“The opportunity to meet with Café Bambini owner Steve Law and other businesses is valuable as we see where they are at and what support is still needed three months after the floods,” Ms Fentiman said.

“I would encourage businesses who are still struggling, to get in contact with the Small Business Recovery Centre – we can’t help if we don’t know.”

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