The Australian and New South Wales (NSW) Governments will expand assistance to communities as they begin to rebuild and recover following the recent catastrophic storm and flood event, with a new clean-up program and activation of recovery grants.
Visiting the Mid North Coast, Prime Minister Scott Morrison, Premier Gladys Berejiklian, Minister for Drought and Emergency Management David Littleproud, and NSW Deputy Premier, John Barilaro announced the activation of Category C and D assistance through the joint Commonwealth-State Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA).
The clean-up program will assist households, businesses, primary producers and local councils affected by the floods and will include both insured and uninsured properties. The costs will be shared 50:50 between the Australian and NSW Governments.
The Australian and NSW Governments have also agreed to provide recovery grants to small businesses of up to $50,000 and grants to primary producers of up to $75,000 where direct damage has occurred, on a cost shared basis.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the Australian and NSW Governments were committed to helping communities across the State that have been devastated in the record-breaking floods.
“It’s heartbreaking to see the damage to so many communities, especially to those who have barely recovered from the bushfires,” Prime Minister Morrison said.
“As the floodwaters start to recede, the difficulties will continue as people begin cleaning out their homes, business owners count the cost of lost equipment and farmers who have lost their livestock.”
“Just as we have stood with people through COVID-19, the bushfires and drought we will stand with those who have been devastated by these floods.”
Minister for Emergency Management David Littleproud said the resilience of the NSW people have been tested over the past 18-months and measures are in place to support communities every step of the way.
“The recent disaster has caused significant damage and we are designing support packages to help people get back on their feet.”
“The Australian Defence Force personnel, alongside NSW Rural Fire Service and Fire and Rescue NSW, have already been deployed,” Minister Littleproud said.
“Teams are going from house to house, hosing out properties and removing damaged items, as well as sandbagging and clearing debris.”
New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the clean-up strike force was just the first step.
“We want the community to know that we will be with them every step of the way as they clean-up and recover from the floods,” Premier Berejiklian said.
“We appreciate it will be a very challenging time for people as they go back to their homes and their properties and we know the clean-up and recovery process may take weeks and even months.
“I want to thank everyone involved in helping with the clean-up and recovery efforts.”
NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro, the state Minister responsible for disaster recovery, said the impact to communities has been evident over the last days, however the extent of the impact on the farming and business sectors has not been fully quantified.
“These communities that have already been torn apart by drought and bushfires will have the full support of the Government as they get back on their feet,” Minister Barilaro said.
“These recovery grants will help with clean up and recovery costs, including repairing and replacing damaged assets. This will be a massive boost to our farmers and small business owners which are the backbone of our nation’s economy.”
The NSW Storm and Flood Clean-up Program includes:
- Residential clean-up – to assist residents in flood affected areas whose homes have been damaged by floodwaters
- Clean-up of essential public assets – to assist with the clean-up and debris removal activities from flood damaged public assets (e.g. roads)
- Clean-up of community, recreation and cultural assets including sporting fields
- Primary producers and small business clean-up – to assist primary producers and small businesses to clean-up and dispose of flood related debris from their properties.
- Clean-up and restoration of environmental assets – to assist with the clean-up and restoration of flood damaged, priority environmental assets including beaches
- Associated clean-up and waste disposal costs – to cover additional costs incurred by affected councils and relevant state agencies.
Small business recovery grants up to $50,000 (direct damage)
The grants are designed to provide short-term targeted assistance for recovery and reinstatement activities, including safety inspections, repairs to premises and internal fittings, and replacement of stock.
Primary producer recovery grants up to $75,000 (direct damage)
The grants are designed to provide short-term targeted assistance for recovery and reinstatement activities, including salvaging crops and repairs to damaged farm infrastructure (e.g. fencing) and equipment.
To connect with a Customer Care specialist, call Service NSW between 7am and 7pm on 13 77 88. The Contact Centre hours have been extended to include weekends while communities recover. Information about the Customer Care service is also available in Service NSW Centres.