Disaster recovery assistance activated for the ACT bushfires


Released 12/02/2020 - Joint media release

  • Federal Minister for Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management, The Hon David Littleproud
  • Chief Minister, Andrew Barr

Disaster recovery assistance has been activated in response to the bushfires affecting the ACT for a range of practical recovery measures, including concessional interest rate loans for farmers and small businesses and to help with residential clean-up.

Minister for Emergency Management David Littleproud said the ACT has been affected by bushfires for prolonged periods during the 2019-20 bushfire season.

“The bushfires affecting the ACT have had ongoing impacts for the ACT community and we are committed to supporting the recovery effort,” Minister Littleproud said.

“In particular, the Orroral Valley Fire, which occurred in the Namadgi National Park has burnt over 86,000 hectares, threatened lives, forced evacuations and damaged property.

“This funding will help those affected get back on their feet sooner and assist in the clean-up effort.

“Activation of the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements also means the Australian Government will help cover some of the costs associated with firefighting response operations which were undertaken to protect the community,” Minister Littleproud said.

ACT Chief Minister Andrew Barr said that is has been a tough summer for the nation’s capital, which has been impacted by bushfire and extended periods of smoke haze.

“ACT Emergency Services have been working hard this summer, fighting fires in our borders as well as lending a hand to the NSW Rural fire service”, Chief Minister Barr said.

“The Orroral Valley Fire presented the biggest bushfire risk to the Territory since 2003, and it required a significant response from our emergency services agencies with the support of the Australian Defence Force.”

“The nation’s capital also played a key role in supporting people fleeing fires along the South Coast. The relief centre at the Dickson College helped a number of families that had nowhere else to go.

“This bushfire season impacted on the way of life for our city, particularly small businesses in the hospitality and tourism sector that have been doing it tough for a number of months with extended periods of smoke haze and bushfire threat.

“We welcome this announcement from the Commonwealth that eligible businesses can apply for financial support. Any business that have suffered significant financial loss as a direct result of this summer’s bushfire season should contact Access Canberra on 13 22 81 or accesscanberra.act.gov.au for further information and to discuss support options available.

“We will continue to work with the Australian Government as we move into a recovery phase from the bushfires that have impacted our city and our region.”

The assistance is being provided through the jointly funded Commonwealth-Territory Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA). Information on disaster assistance can be found on the Australian Government’s disaster assist website www.disasterassist.gov.au.

- Statement ends -

Section: Andrew Barr, MLA | Media Releases

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