Friday, 17 November 2023
Media release

Loans for bushfire-impacted small businesses in Queensland's Western Downs

Joint media release with the Hon Steven Miles MP

Disaster assistance provided by the Albanese and Palaszczuk Governments has been extended to help bushfire affected small business operators in the Western Downs local government area.

Concessional loans up to $250,000 are available to re-establish operations for fire impacted businesses in the region, covering costs such as:

  • Repairing or replacing damaged plant and equipment
  • Repairing or replacing buildings
  • Resupplying stock needed for immediate trading

In addition, essential working capital concessional loans up to $100,000 are available for directly and indirectly impacted small businesses to carry on business operations such as paying salaries or wages, paying creditors, rent or rates.

The assistance is jointly funded through the Commonwealth-State Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA).

The new small business support comes on top of a range of jointly funded assistance measures already activated in the Western Downs, including hardship payments for individuals, freight subsidies and loans for primary producers, and $5000 payments for uninsured homeowners to have damaged services like electricity, gas and water inspected and reconnected.

For more information on disaster assistance, eligibility and how to apply visit the Queensland Rural and Industry Development Authority website.

To learn more about DRFA support head to the Queensland Reconstruction Authority website.

Quotes attributable to Federal Minister for Emergency Management Murray Watt:

“These fires have been extremely tough on everyone in affected areas, including small business operators in and around Tara in the Western Downs.

“Concessional loans are now available to assist small businesses whose equipment or buildings have been damaged by the fires to help them recover and return to viable operations.

“Those small businesses that have suffered loss of income as a consequence of the fires can also access working capital loans to continue business operations.

“This is the latest assistance we have made available in response to these terrible fires and I urge people impacted to check what support may be available to them.”

Quotes attributable to Deputy Premier and minister responsible for the Queensland Reconstruction Authority Steven Miles:

“Western Downs has been significantly impacted by Queensland’s intense 2023 bushfire season and the scale of the destruction is still being revealed,” Mr Miles said.

“Extending this assistance to eligible small businesses in the region will help those who have lost so much to get on the road to recovery.

“No matter what type of enterprise, if you operate a registered small business in the Western Downs and you’ve been directly affected by these fires, I encourage you to apply for this assistance.

“The Queensland Government will continue working with local councils and the Commonwealth to support the recovery of communities impacted by these bushfires.”