Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

Help for flood-affected people on the Mid North Coast

The Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment will be provided to eligible people adversely affected by the 5 November floods in the Mid North Coast and Northern Rivers region of New South Wales.

Those eligible will receive a one off payment of $1,000 for adults and $400 for each child to help their recovery from this disaster.

This payment will provide financial assistance to people who were seriously injured, whose principal place of residence was destroyed or significantly damaged, who were unable to return home or who were isolated by the floodwaters for a period of 24 hours or more.

Applications for the Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment open tomorrow. People can claim the payment during the next six months.

Hundreds of households in Northern New South Wales have been affected by the heavy rain and flooding that began on 5 November 2009.

This recent flooding follows a year of extreme weather in the region, which has seriously impacted on local communities. The Australian Government understands these communities have been hit hard by the cumulative affect of these floods.

This payment is over and above the support being provided by the Australian Government under the Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements, which is providing financial and practical assistance to people affected by this flooding.

We will continue to work with the New South Wales Government and the local community to support individuals and families to recover from a year of enormous stress and disaster.

The Australian Government is currently considering the information provided by the Mayors of Coffs Harbour and Bellingen Shire Council on residents who continue to be affected by the March floods in the Mid North Coast and Northern Rivers region.

The Australian Government is examining this information as a matter of priority to identify possible gaps in assistance. We will respond quickly, and are continuing to work cooperatively with the local Mayors.

For more information call the Australian Government’s NSW November 09 Floods Hotline on 180 2333 or visit your local Centrelink office.

More information on Australian Government assistance is available at Disasterassist.