Assistant Minister for Home Affairs Senator the Hon. Linda Reynolds and Tasmanian Premier Will Hodgman have announced further financial assistance to support people directly affected by the Tasmanian bushfires.
Assistance is being provided through the jointly funded Commonwealth-State Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA).
Assistant Minister Reynolds, who has responsibility for Commonwealth disaster assistance, said that the Commonwealth and Tasmanian Governments are committed to supporting bushfire affected communities and continue to work closely to support disaster recovery efforts.
“Three Recovery and Restoration Grants are being made available to assist in meeting the longer term needs of people who have lost their homes or incurred property damage as a direct result of the bushfires,” Assistant Minister Reynolds said.
Premier Hodgman said that a second round of Emergency Assistance Grants is now available, meaning those displaced who have already received a grant may re-apply.
“The Recovery and Restoration Grants are targeted at individuals most in need who are unable to provide for their own recovery. Eligibility criteria is applied so that low-income households with no or inadequate insurance can be assisted,” Premier Hodgman said.
The three grants are:
- Temporary Living Expenses Grant: Financial assistance for temporary accommodation if a home is unfit to live in or inaccessible.
- Replacement of Household Items: Financial assistance for replacement of essential household items damaged or destroyed.
- Repair and Restoration Grant: Financial assistance for essential repairs to re-establish a home which has been damaged.
Photo identification is needed to apply and grants of up to $1000 per family will be provided. Applications are to be made in-person at Service Tasmania Hobart or Baden Powell Scout and Guide Hall, Huonville.
If affected individuals wish to apply for a Recovery and Restoration Grant, they can do so by phoning the Tasmanian Emergency Information Service on 1800 567 567. These grants will be available for three months after impact.
Freight subsidies will also be made available to eligible primary producers in affected areas that have suffered asset damage relating to the transportation of livestock. Individuals can contact AgriGrowth Tasmania on 03 6777 2233 or visit www.dpipwe.tas.gov.au for more information.
Assistant Minister Reynolds and Premier Hodgman recognise responding to natural disasters can result in significant financial pressure on councils as they continue to assist affected community members and fund recovery activities.
In recognition of this, funding has also been made available to eligible councils through the DRFA for activities such as delivering emergency assistance to individuals, restoring damaged public assets and undertaking counter-disaster operations.
Bushfire affected councils which may be eligible for Disaster Relief funding includes Central Highlands, Derwent Valley, Huon Valley and West Coast.
Members of the public can also support those affected through the 2019 Vinnies Tasmanian Bushfire Appeal. Cash donations can be made at Vinnies shops throughout Tasmania, or by transfer through the donation hotline on 13 18 12 or the Vinnies website at https://www.vinnies.org.au/donate#!state=tas.