Natural disaster and emergency assistance

Latest update - Assistance for QLD businesses affected by Tropical Cyclone Debbie and NSW businesses affected by the North Coast Floods which commenced 28 March 2017.

Two people sweeping leaves off pavement after rain.

Government assistance is available for businesses affected by natural disasters and other unexpected disasters. This page will be kept up to date with the latest information and assistance, so revisit frequently to keep informed.

Federal Government

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business.gov.au can help by giving advice on up-to-date Australian Government and state and territory government support for businesses affected by current disasters. The level of assistance available may vary depending on the severity of each disaster and the area where you are located.

Contact business.gov.au:

Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements

The Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA) provide urgent financial assistance to disaster-affected communities. This assistance is delivered through state and territory government agencies.

Information on the Local Government Areas eligible for NDRRA assistance and the types of assistance that are available can be found on the Australian Government’s Disaster Assist website.

Check the Disaster Assist website regularly, as it will be updated as disasters unfold and more information becomes available.

Australian Taxation Office

Visit the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) website for information on the support provided by the ATO to individuals and businesses dealing with natural disasters.

Rural Financial Counselling Service

The Rural Financial Counselling Service provides free rural financial counselling to primary producers, fishers and small rural businesses suffering from financial hardship and who have no other sources of impartial support.

Under the service, 'small rural business' means a rural business that:

  • employs no more than ten full-time-equivalent (38 hours per week) employees
  • provides the majority of its services to primary producers
  • is directly involved in primary production (e.g. fencing, harvesting, spraying or stock management).

Locations of rural financial counsellors can be found on the Rural Financial Counselling Service website or by calling 1800 686 175 (toll free).

Queensland

Tropical Cyclone Debbie - 28 March 2017

For eligible small businesses, primary producers and voluntary non-profit organisations affected by the Tropical Cyclone Debbie from 28 March 2017, concessional interest loans and interest rate subsidies for small businesses, primary producers and voluntary non-profit organisations, and freight subsidies for primary producers, are available for the affected local government areas of:

  • Mackay
  • Whitsunday
  • Central Highlands
  • Gold Coast City
  • Gladstone
  • Isaac
  • Livingstone
  • Logan
  • Lockyer Valley
  • Rockhampton
  • Scenic Rim
  • Banana
  • North Burnett.

The QLD Disaster Management Services website lists natural disaster declarations and available assistance.

Bank offer support

Queensland residents impacted by Cyclone Debbie are encouraged to contact their bank to access emergency support, such as a suspension of loan repayments or fee waivers.

Telecommunications assistance

If your internet access or mobile phone service has been affected by Cyclone Debbie, contact your telecommunications service provider to see if they offer any assistance packages to get your services back online.

Tropical Cyclone Marcia - February 2015

For eligible primary producers affected by the Severe Tropical Cyclone Marcia in February 2015, concessional loans and freight subsidies are available for the local government areas of:

  • Banana
  • Livingstone
  • North Burnett
  • Rockhampton.

Find out more:

For more information on accessing a concessional loan, contact the QRAA on 1800 623 946.

For more information on freight subsidies, visit the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries website.

The QLD Disaster Management Services website lists natural disaster declarations and available assistance.

New South Wales

North Coast Floods (Cyclone Debbie) - 28 March 2017

For eligible small businesses, primary producers and voluntary non-profit organisations affected by the North Coast Floods (Cyclone Debbie) from 28 March 2017, concessional loans for small businesses, primary producers and voluntary non-profit organisations, freight subsidies for primary producers and grants for voluntary non-profit organisations are available for the affected local government areas of Ballina, Byron, Kyogle, Lismore, Richmond Valley and Tweed.

Recovery grants of up to $15,000 are available for eligible small businesses and non-profit organisations within local government targeted areas of Lismore and Tweed.

For information on available recovery assistance, visit the Emergency NSW website.

For further information on recovery arrangements, visit the Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements page.

NSW Inland Storms and Floods - 30 August 2016

For eligible small businesses and primary producers affected by the NSW Inland storms and floods from 30 August 2016, concessional loans for small businesses and primary producers, and freight subsidies for primary producers are available for the affected local government areas of Bathurst, Bland, Blayney, Cabonne, Coonamble, Cootamundra-Gundagai, Cowra, Forbes, Gilgandra, Hilltops, Lachlan, Mid-Western, Narromine, Orange, Parkes, Temora, Walgett, Warren, Warrumbungle, Western Plains, Yass Valley.

Visit the Emergency NSW site for more information. 

NSW East Coast Storms and Floods - 1 June 2016

For eligible small businesses and primary producers affected by the NSW East Coast Storms and Floods from 1 June 2016, concessional loans for small businesses and primary producers, and freight subsidies for primary producers are available for the affected local government areas of Bega, Blacktown, Byron, Camden, Campbelltown, Canterbury-Bankstown, Central Coast, City of Sydney, Coffs Harbour, Eurobodalla, Fairfield, Hornsby, Inner West, Kiama, Ku-ring-gai, Lane Cove, Lismore, Liverpool, Maitland, Northern Beaches, Parramatta, Penrith, Port Macquarie-Hastings, Queanbeyan-Palerang, Randwick, Ryde, Shellharbour, Shoalhaven, Sutherland, The Hills, Tweed, Waverley, Willoughby, Wingecarribee, Wollondilly, Wollongong, Woollahra.

Visit the Emergency NSW site for more information.

NSW East Coast Storms and Floods - 14-15 January 2016

For eligible small businesses and primary producers affected by the NSW East Coast Storms and Floods on 14-15 January 2016, concessional loans for small businesses and primary producers, and freight subsidies for primary producers are available for the affected local government areas of:

  • Hurstville
  • Liverpool
  • Penrith
  • Wollondilly
  • Wyong.

Visit the Emergency NSW site for more information.

Hawkesbury Bushfires - 11 December 2015

For eligible small businesses and primary producers affected by the Hawkesbury Bushfires on 11 December 2015, concessional loans for small businesses and primary producers, and freight subsidies for primary producers are available for the affected local government area of Hawkesbury.

Shoalhaven Bushfires - 26 November 2015

For eligible small businesses and primary producers affected by the Shoalhaven Bushfires which commenced 26 November 2015, concessional loans for small businesses and primary producers, and freight subsidies for primary producers are available for the affected local government area of Shoalhaven.

Blue Mountains Bushfire - 2 August 2015

For eligible small businesses and primary producers affected by the Blue Mounstains Bushfire which commenced 2 August 2015, concessional loans for small businesses and primary producers, and freight subsidies for primary producers are available for the affected local government area of Blue Mountains.

Visit the Emergency NSW site for more information.

Sydney Metropolitan Area Hail Storm - 25 April 2015

For eligible small businesses and primary producers affected by the Sydney Metropolitan Area Hail Storm on 25 April 2015, concessional loans for small businesses and primary producers, and freight subsidies for primary producers are available for the affected local government areas of:

  • Blacktown
  • Marrickville
  • Randwick
  • Sydney.

Visit the Emergency NSW site for more information.

NSW Severe Thunderstorms - 16 December 2015

For eligible businesses affected by the NSW Severe Thunderstorms on 16 December 2015, concessional loans for small businesses and primary producers, and freight subsidies for primary producers is available for those in the affected local government areas of:

  • Randwick
  • Sutherland
  • Waverly
  • Woollahra.

Visit the Emergency NSW site for more information.

NSW Severe Weather - 24 August 2015

For eligible small businesses and primary producers affected by the NSW severe weather on 24 August 2015, concessional loans for small businesses and primary producers, and freight subsidies for primary producers are available for the affected local government areas of:

  • Penrith
  • Shoalhaven
  • Upper Hunter
  • Wollongong.

Find out more:

Visit the NSW Rural Assistance Authority website for more information and to apply for a concessional loan.

You can also check the website for the most updated list of areas eligible for assistance.

You can find all of the NDRRA assistance measures available on the NSW Natural Disaster Assistance Schemes page of the Ministry for Police and Emergency Services website.

For natural disaster declarations, visit the NSW Emergency Management website.

Victoria

Victorian Bushfires - 3 October 2015

For eligible primary producers that have suffered direct damage as a result of the Victorian bushfires on 3 October 2015, concessional interest rate loans are available for the local government areas of:

  • Macedon Ranges
  • Mitchell
  • Murrindindi
  • Surf Coast.

Victorian Bushfires - 16 December 2014 and 2 January 2015

For eligible primary producers that have suffered direct damage as a result of the Victorian bushfires on 16 December 2014 and 2 January 2015, concessional interest rate loans of up to $200,000 are available for the local government areas of:

  • Arafat
  • Benalla
  • Moira
  • Strathbogie
  • Wangaratta.

Find out more:

To apply for a concessional interest rate loan, primary producers can contact Rural Finance Victoria on 1800 260 425 or visit the Rural Finance website.

The VIC Emergency Relief and Recovery website lists natural disaster declarations and available assistance.

Western Australia

Heavy rainfall and associated flooding in the South West - 18-21 January 2016

For eligible small businesses and primary producers affected by the Heavy rainfall and associated flooding in the South West on 18-21 January 2016, interest rate and freight subsidies are available for the affected local government areas of:

  • Augusta- Margaret River
  • Boyup Brook
  • Bridgetown-Greenbushes
  • Broomehill-Tambellup
  • Cranbrook
  • Gnowangerup
  • Jerramungup
  • Katanning
  • Kojonup
  • Manjimup
  • Nannup
  • Plantagenet
  • West Arthur.

Esperance Bushfire - 15 November 2015

For eligible small businesses and primary producers affected by the Esperance Bushfire on 15 November 2015, interest rate and freight subsidies are available for the affected local government area of the Esperance.

Heavy rainfall and associated flooding - 30-31 July 2015

For eligible small businesses and primary producers affected by the Heavy rainfall and associated flooding on 30-31 July 2015, interest rate and freight subsidies are available for primary producers and small businesses in the affected local government areas of:

  • Dalwallinu
  • Kellerberrin
  • Moora
  • Tammin
  • Westonia
  • Wongan-Ballidu
  • Wyalkatchem.

Surface trough and associated flooding - 1-2 February 2015

For eligible small businesses and primary producers affected by the Surface trough and associated flooding on 1-2 February 2015, interest rate and freight subsidies are available for the local government area of Carnamah.

Find out more:

For more information, visit the Department of the Premier and Cabinet website.

The WA Department of Fire and Emergency Services website provides information on natural disaster declarations and available assistance.

South Australia

For businesses affected by disasters please contact the Department for Communities and Social Inclusion for information on specific disasters, accessing emergency relief and registering for the State Emergency Relief Fund.

See the South Australia bushfires January 2015 - Disaster Recovery Allowance page on the Department of Human Services website for more information.

The SA Fire and Emergency Services Commission website provides links to emergency services information and available assistance.

Northern Territory

The NT Police, Fire and Emergency Services website lists assistance services and posts warnings and updates on emergencies.

Tasmania

Tasmanian Floods - June 2016

For eligible small businesses and primary producers affected by the Tasmanian Floods in June 2016, concessional loans for small businesses and primary producers, and freight subsidies for primary producers are available for the affected local government areas of:

  • Break O'Day
  • Burnie
  • Central Coast
  • Central Highlands
  • Circular Head
  • Derwent Valley
  • Devonport
  • Dorset
  • George Town
  • Glamorgan/Spring Bay
  • Kentish
  • Latrobe
  • Launceston
  • Meander Valley
  • Northern Midlands
  • Southern Midlands
  • Waratah-Wynyard
  • West Tamar.

For information on available recovery assistance, visit the Tasmanian Department of Premier and Cabinet website.

The TAS Department of Police and Emergency Services provides links to emergency services and information on natural disaster declarations.

Australian Capital Territory

The ACT Emergency Services website lists assistance and services, and posts warnings and updates on emergencies.

Other assistance

  • Call Lifeline Australia or beyondblue for hardship counselling services.
  • Search Grants & Assistance for government grants for businesses affected by natural disaster.
  • Download our Emergency management template and guide to create a plan in case your business is affected by a natural disaster. If you own a tablet, download our free MyBizShield app to be guided through creating your plan.
  • Visit the Bureau of Meteorology website for up-to-date weather information and warnings in your state or territory.
  • Download the DisasterWatch Phone App from Google Play and from Apple iTunes (search for DisasterWatch). The app provides news and information about disasters in Australia via direct feeds from a range of authoritative sources in the states and territories and nationally.








































































































































































































































































































































































































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