Extraordinary assistance grants of up to $50,000 are now available for primary producers, small businesses and non-profit organisations affected by the recent floods in the Wide Bay-Burnett region to help communities get back on their feet.
The grants are jointly funded by the Commonwealth and Queensland governments under the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA) and will be available to eligible applicants in the Bundaberg, Fraser Coast, Gympie, North Burnett and South Burnett local government areas.
Minister for Emergency Management and National Recovery and Resilience Senator the Hon Bridget McKenzie said the activation of extraordinary grant assistance under the DRFA was imperative to allow primary producers, small business owners and non-profit organisations to help overcome the damage.
“We have reports that hundreds of primary producers had their crops wiped out, infrastructure damaged or destroyed and lost livestock as a result of Ex-Tropical Cyclone Seth,” Minister McKenzie said.
“There are obviously flow-on effects from the damage sustained in the agricultural industry during this flood, damage that is of national significance with lost crops leading to supply issues for Australians down the track.
“Agriculture is a major industry in the Wide Bay-Burnett region. The flood has impacted the horticulture, cotton, sugar cane, grain, livestock and dairy sectors, so these extraordinary assistance grants of $50,000 will be a welcome boost to help primary producers get back on their feet.
“The announcement of these grants is another example of the Australian and Queensland governments’ commitment to working with these communities to ensure they can recover, and we’ll continue to work together to see if other assistance is required,” she said.
Acting Premier and Minister responsible for the Queensland Reconstruction Authority Steven Miles said small businesses and non-profit organisations who have felt the wrath of Ex-Tropical Cyclone Seth can also access grants of up to $50,000 to assist with their recovery.
“Primary producers and small businesses are the lifeblood of regional communities so it is imperative we support them in crisis and give them the help they need as they work to restock, replant, repair and recover,” Mr Miles said.
“It’s estimated the impact of the floods is into the millions of dollars for small businesses. More than 70 businesses have been directly impacted by the floods in the Wide Bay and Burnett region.
“Across the region, the flood has seen major impacts to small businesses including damaged infrastructure and equipment, lost stock, loss of income and a lack of access to new supplies due to road closures.
“It will take time for these primary producers and small businesses to get back on their feet, but we are here to help them do just that.”