EXTRAORDINARY ASSISTANCE GRANTS NOW AVAILABLE IN WIDE BAY – BURNETT REGION

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 Fraser Coast, Gympie, Bundaberg, North Burnett and South Burnett local government areas.

Federal Member for Wide Bay and Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives Llew O’Brien said the activation of extraordinary grant assistance is essential to help primary producers, small business owners and non-profit organisations in the flood-affected areas of Fraser Coast, Gympie, and South Burnett Regional Council areas to repair and rebuild.

“There have been many reports of primary producers having their crops wiped out; infrastructure, buildings, fencing and vehicles damaged or destroyed; and livestock and crops lost as a result of the severe rain and flooding caused by Ex-Tropical Cyclone Seth,” Mr O’Brien said.

“Agriculture is a major industry and employer in the Wide Bay-Burnett region, and the extraordinary assistance grants of up to $50,000 will provide a much-needed boost to help primary producers get back on their feet.

“The announcement of these grants is a further example of the Australian Government working with Queensland to help these communities to recover, and we’ll continue to work to assess the damage should other assistance be required,” Mr O’Brien said.

Small businesses and not-for-profit community organisations seriously affected by Ex-Tropical Cyclone Seth are also eligible to apply for the grants to help them overcome the damage.

“More than 70 businesses throughout the Wide Bay and Burnett region have been directly affected by the floods which caused damage to road infrastructure, impacting on supply chains; equipment, which leads to productivity losses, and goods, stock, feed and crops, causing loss of income,” Mr O’Brien said.

“The economic impact of the severe rain and flooding will be felt for months to come. While the losses incurred in the floods have caused serious hardship in places, these grants can provide some vital support for severely affected primary producers, small businesses and community groups to help with cleaning up, repairing buildings and fencing, and purchasing equipment.”

For more information on grants for primary producers, small businesses and non-profit organisations phone Queensland Rural and Industry Development Authority on 1800 623 946 or visit http://www.qrida.qld.gov.au.

Further information on disaster assistance can be found on the Queensland Reconstruction Authority’s website at www.qra.qld.gov.au.