Commonwealth Government to Provide Assistance for Western Australian Communities Hit by Severe Bushfires

Western Australia, Australia ( February 08, 2011

Commonwealth Government to Provide Assistance for Western Australian Communities Hit by Severe Bushfires

Commonwealth Government to Provide Assistance for Western Australian Communities Hit by Severe Bushfires

Attorney-General Robert McClelland today said the Commonwealth Government will provide assistance for communities in Western Australia hit by severe bushfires over the past 72 hours.

Mr McClelland said the activation of assistance follows the declaration by the Western Australian Government of five Local Government Areas as natural disaster zones – the City of Armadale, City of Canning, Shire of Chittering, Shire of Serpentine Jarrahdale and the City of Swan.

The declaration gives communities who have been impacted by the bushfires access to joint Commonwealth/State Government assistance under the Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA).

This includes:

  • Personal Support Assistance – Emergency assistance for people who have suffered personal hardship, including:
    • The provision of emergency assistance including emergency accommodation, food, essential clothing and other personal items – payments of up to $388 per eligible adult and up to $194 per eligible child on the 1st day of assistance (with reductions in payment levels on subsequent days);
    • Temporary living expenses of up to $110 per day per adult/family in the metropolitan area and up to $150 per day per adult/family in country areas;
    • Housing repairs of up to $10,000; and
    • Replacement of household furniture of up to $10,500.
  • Infrastructure Rebuilding – Funding for local governments and state agencies for the restoration or replacement of essential public assets and infrastructure (once thresholds are reached).
  • Small Business Support – Interest rate subsidies for small businesses affected by the fires.
  • Support for Primary Producers – Including recovery advice, interest rate subsidies and freight subsidies.

“The bushfire crisis continues to threaten more houses in Perth’s South East, with dozens of homes already lost in Kelmscott and Roleystone,” Mr McClelland said.

“This evening, the threat is far from over with hundreds of firefighters continuing to battle the main blaze.

“This is obviously an incredibly difficult time for the hundreds of residents who’ve lost their homes or have been forced to evacuate.

“Two Ericsson heavy-lift helicopters – jointly funded by the Commonwealth Government as part of the National Aerial Firefighting Capability – are enroute to Western Australia from Victoria.

“The Commonwealth Government stands ready to offer any further assistance to help authorities and the community deal with these devastating fires.”

NDRRA assistance is funded by the Commonwealth on a 50/50 basis with the WA Government and delivered by state agencies.   Eligibility criteria for payments apply.

  • For information regarding personal support contact the WA Department of Child Protection on 1800 199 008.
  • For information on assistance for small businesses, contact the Fire and Emergency Services Authority of Western Australia on (08) 9323 9552.
  • For information on support for primary producers, contact the WA Department of Agriculture and Food on 1800 198 231.

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