Disaster relief for northern rivers council areas

The state government has announced disaster assistance for 37 councils across the state following last weekend's storms and floods. (Pic Tree Faerie)

The state government has announced disaster assistance for 37 councils across the state following last weekend’s storms and floods. (Pic Tree Faerie)

Local councils across the northern rivers have welcomed news that disaster relief funding will be available to help rebuild damaged infrastructure.

Lismore, Byron and Tweed shire councils have all been informed they would be eligible for assistance under the Commonwealth-state Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA).

They are among 37 councils across the state that have been deemed eligible for assistance.

Tweed council’s general manager Troy Green said the declaration would allow the council to access funding to assist with cleaning up and restoring damaged assets such as roads and culverts.

‘This saves ratepayers from having to foot the entire bill – which in the Tweed is expected to be around $500,000 – although there will be some costs that are not eligible under this program,’ Mr Green said.

‘It’s also great news that assistance with be available to affected and eligible homeowners, businesses, primary producers and not-for-profit groups in the Tweed.’

Meanwhile, North Coast Nationals MLC Ben Franklin said the financial support from the government would provide support to the communities hardest hit by the weekend weather event.

‘Events like these test us as a community. We have witnessed an extraordinary level of hard work and dedication from our emergency services and volunteers and for this we say thank you,’ he said.

Mr Franklin said the NSW Government continued to work with other affected councils to identify impacts and make more declarations where appropriate.

Lismore mayor Jenny Dowell also welcomed news that the Lismore council area would be eligible for disaster relief.

The assistance includes:

  • Assistance to help eligible people whose homes or belongings have been damaged, and who meet an assets and income test
  • Assistance to help councils in the affected local government areas with the costs associated with cleaning up and restoring damaged public assets
  • Concessional interest rate loans for small businesses, primary producers and not-for-profit organisations; freight subsidies for primary producers
  • Grants to not-for-profit organisations.

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