AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE FOR WIDE BAY FLOOD VICTIMS

Wide Bay residents affected by the unfolding flood disaster can apply for flood assistance grants of up to $1000 per eligible adult and $400 per child, Federal Member for Wide Bay and Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives Llew O’Brien announced today.

The Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment (AGDRP) is a one-off, non-means-tested payment and is available to eligible people in Gympie, Noosa, the South Burnett, and Fraser Coast and Sunshine Coast council areas who have suffered a significant loss, including a severely damaged or destroyed home or serious injury.

Mr O’Brien said affected residents can claim support via myGov or by calling Services Australia on 180 22 66 from 1pm today (28 February).

“These once-in-a-generation floods have caused significant damage and catastrophic losses to homes, businesses, and properties throughout Wide Bay and in particular at Gympie, where the floods have been among the highest on record,” Mr O’Brien said.

“This severe weather event hit so many parts of Wide Bay, and it’s not over yet as the floodwater is moving down the Mary River and into Maryborough.

“Tragically, these floods have resulted in the loss of lives, as well as hundreds of people being evacuated from their homes, and it has also damaged roads, bridges, drainage systems and other infrastructure throughout the electorate.

“It’s impossible to replace much of what has been lost, but support is being made available to help people through these very difficult times,” Mr O’Brien said.

“I’ve been in contact with the Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce, and the Minister for Emergency Management and National Recovery and Resilience, Senator the Hon Bridget McKenzie, and we expect further Commonwealth assistance to be activated once the floodwater recedes and the damage can be fully assessed.”

Australian Defence Force personnel are supporting the emergency response efforts and will do more once as we move into the recovery phase.

The Disaster Recovery Allowance (DRA) has also been activated and is available to eligible people in Noosa, Gympie, the South Burnett and the Fraser Coast and Sunshine Coast.

The DRA assists employees, small business persons and farmers who experience a loss of income as a direct result of a major disaster. You might be eligible for a maximum of 13 weeks’ payment from the date you have or will have a loss of income as a direct result of a disaster. The DRA is taxable.

Since 2019-20 the Federal Government has provided $17 billion in disaster relief.

Services Australia’s Disaster Assistance phone line (180 22 66) is available for those who are unable to claim online from Monday 28 February. For more information on support available, visit servicesaustralia.gov.au/disaster