Disaster assistance has been extended for remote communities in Far North Queensland that were affected by severe weather and flooding brought on by Tropical Cyclone Penny.
Assistance is being provided through the jointly funded Commonwealth-Queensland Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA).
Assistant Minister for Home Affairs Senator the Hon. Linda Reynolds and Queensland Minister for Fire and Emergency Services Craig Crawford said Tropical Cyclone Penny caused significant damage across the region, with uprooted trees and flooded roads isolating communities.
“Pormpuraaw, Torres Shire Council, Torres Strait Island and Whitsunday Regional Council can now access funding to support recovery efforts following the cyclone,” Assistant Minister Reynolds said.
“As Queensland reels from the recent flood crisis, communities on Cape York can be assured the Commonwealth and Queensland Governments haven’t forgotten Tropical Cyclone Penny and its destructive impacts.
“Today’s extension of DRFA assistance to affected remote communities will restore essential public assets damaged by the cyclone.”
Minister Crawford said Cyclone Penny crossed the coast three times during the Christmas and New Year period and the effects were still being felt in the Torres Strait.
“These communities are no stranger to cyclones and monsoon floods, but Cyclone Penny was an exceptional event,” Minister Crawford said.
“Each time we thought Penny was over, she came back bringing terrible winds and flooding rains.
“The extension of DRFA assistance to these councils brings the number of impacted local governments from Tropical Cyclone Penny to nine.
“The Commonwealth and Queensland governments continue to monitor the situation on Cape York as the 2019 disaster season continues and are ready to extend disaster assistance to communities that need it.”
The nine local governments activated for DRFA assistance are: Cook Shire Council, Hope Vale Aboriginal Shire Council, Mapoon Shire Council, Northern Peninsula Area Regional Council, Pormpuraaw Aboriginal Shire Council, Torres Shire Council, Torres Strait Island Regional Council, Whitsunday Regional Council and Wujal Wujal Aboriginal Shire Council.
Information on disaster assistance can be found on the Queensland Government’s Disaster Management website at www.disaster.qld.gov.au and the Australian Government’s Disaster Assist website at www.disasterassist.gov.au.