Disaster assistance for bushfire affected communities in New South Wales

Issued: 8 March 2017

Joint Media Release by The Hon Michael Keenan MP, Minister for Justice Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Counter Terrorism and The Hon Troy Grant MP, Minister for Emergency Services

Minister for Justice Michael Keenan and New South Wales Minister for Emergency Services Troy Grant today announced disaster assistance in response to the following bushfires:

  • Penrith bushfire from 13 November 2016
  • Bland Shire bushfire from 30 November 2016
  • Dubbo and Mid-Western Regional bushfire from 12 January 2017
  • Southern Ranges bushfires from 17 January 2017
  • Cessnock and Maitland bushfires from 18 January 2017
  • Bathurst Bushfire from 18 January 2017

Minister Keenan said the assistance is being provided through the jointly-funded Commonwealth-State Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA).

"The Australian and New South Wales governments are committed to working together to ensure disaster affected communities receive the support they need to recover as quickly as possible," Mr Keenan said.

Minister Grant said ten local government areas would receive support under the NDRRA as part of today's announcement.

"To help these communities with the cost of recovery, assistance is available in the local government areas of Bathurst, Bland Shire, Cessnock, Dubbo Regional, Goulburn-Mulwaree, Maitland, Mid-Western Regional, Penrith, Queanbeyan-Palerang and Yass Valley," Mr Grant said.

Assistance available under the NDRRA may include:

  • Help for eligible people whose homes or belongings have been damaged
  • Support for affected local councils to help with the costs of cleaning up and restoring damaged essential public assets
  • Concessional interest rate loans for small businesses, primary producers and non-profit organisations
  • Freight subsidies for primary producers
  • Grants to eligible non-profit organisations.

For information on personal hardship and distress assistance, contact the Disaster Welfare Assistance Line on 1800 018 444.

To apply for a concessional loan, grant or freight subsidy, contact the NSW Rural Assistance Authority on 1800 678 593 or visit raa.nsw.gov.au.

Further information on disaster assistance is available on the Australian Government's Disaster Assist website disasterassist.gov.au and the New South Wales emergency information and response website at emergency.nsw.gov.au