​Disaster assistance for bushfire affected communities in NSW

Issued: 24 February 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 bushfires that affected Kempsey, Tenterfield and the Lower Hunter area of New South Wales on 5 November 2016.

Mr 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 necessary support to help them recover," Mr Keenan said.

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

"Assistance is now available in Cessnock, Dungog, Kempsey, Maitland, Mid Coast, Tenterfield and Port Stephens to help these communities with the cost of recovery," Mr Grant said.​

Assistance available under the NDRRA may include:

  • personal hardship and distress assistance for families and individuals to help with emergency needs such as food, clothing and accommodation,
  • financial assistance for local and state government authorities to undertake counter-disaster operations and to restore damaged public infrastructure,
  • concessional interest rate loans for small businesses, primary producers and not-for-profit organisations who have been directly impacted,
  • freight subsidies for primary producers, and
  • 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.