Disaster Relief for business and community
The incredible resilience of our community is again shining as the clean up begins.
We are buoyed by stories on social media of people coming together to help each other. Even people who have lost everything are pitching in to help others. It’s an incredible time and shows how powerful and strong our community is. New Facebook group Local Flood Help – Together We Can Do It! Camden Haven is a hive of activity and we recommend following it for information on help being offered and ways you can contribute to the recovery.
We are sending a massive thank you to the team at the Laurieton United Services Club who provided comfort, food, safety, dignity and welfare to hundreds of local people free of charge.
Port Macquarie Hastings Council is moving quickly to provide help. Mayor Peta Pinson served breakfast at the Laurieton United Services Club on Sunday. The council is supporting the clean up by waiving tip fees for people in flood-affected areas needing to dispose of damaged goods.
The evacuation road at Dunbogan completed by the council certainly helped some residents who would otherwise have been stuck. We are grateful for this work and the continued efforts of the council as we move forward.
The council held an extraordinary meeting to map a recovery plan following a weekend of disaster. Relief measures include provisions around rates and charges. Details on the decisions made can be found here.
We are also grateful for the work of our state member Leslie Williams who also helped serve meals to evacuees at the Laurieton United Services Club over the weekend. Her husband Don also put on an apron to serve meals. Federal MP David Gillespie also visited evacuation centres as soon as he was able to leave his own flood-impacted property near Wauchope. He also pitched in at the clean up in North Haven, alongside the mayor.
There is plenty of support available both financially and personally for businesses and community members.
Here are 3 ways to apply for help:
- Assistance payments are available from the Australian Government. The Disaster Recovery Payment is $1,000 per adult and $400 per child younger than 16. The fastest way to claim is to call 180 22 66. Go to servicesaustralia.gov.au/
disaster for more information.
- Disaster Relief Grants are available for people whose homes were damaged by flooding. Anyone with limited financial resources or no insurance may be able to receive a financial contribution towards covering the cost of damage and replacement of essential goods. To apply for a grant phone 1800 018 444. You must apply within four months.
- The Disaster Recovery Allowance helps anyone who loses income as the direct result of the flood. The maximum rate is the same as the JobSeeker Payment or Youth Allowance, based on your circumstances. To make a claim phone 180 22 66. More information is available at servicesaustralia.gov.au/
For people impacted by the disaster, if you are feeling distressed please call the Disaster Welfare Assistance Line on 1800 018 444.
For information on personal hardship and distress assistance, call Service NSW on 13 77 88. For free help in your language, call Translating and Interpreting Services on 13 14 50 and ask them to contact Service NSW on 13 77 88.
Disaster recovery assistance is available to businesses in eligible NSW local government areas (LGAs) that have been impacted by the storms and floods from 10 March 2021.
If your business premises have been damaged in the recent storms and flooding, please take photographs of the visible damage as soon as it is safe to do so, to assist in accessing support in the future.
Support and resources for businesses affected by the flood and storms can be found at Service NSW here.
BusinessNSW also wants to hear how they can help local businesses by collating information from affected businesses. You can enter details here. This information will help BusinessNSW design support mechanisms.
The council is offering complimentary space at the Innovation Hub co-working space at Charles Sturt University in Port Macquarie for businesses disrupted by the floods. Apply for use online via the council’s website subject to capacity.
We will keep talking with our council and MPs and pass on any news of assistance available to our community and local businesses.
Please email executive.officer@