April 05, 2017

Ballina and Byron deserve Disaster Recovery Payment too

Greens call for Byron and Ballina Local Government Areas to be eligible for Disaster Relief Funding

Greens Member for Ballina, Tamara Smith and Greens North Coast spokesperson, Dawn Walker have jointly called for Byron and Ballina Shires to be eligible for disaster relief funding under the Commonwealth’s Disaster Recovery Program.

Tamara Smith, Member for Ballina said:

“It’s outrageous that both the NSW Premier and Prime Minister came to visit the North Coast to see our flood-ravaged communities, yet both failed to recognise the major impact to communities in Mullumbimby, New Brighton, Billinudgel, South Golden Beach, Ocean Shores, Cabbage Tree Island and elsewhere, where houses were inundated and people’s property destroyed.  

“Natural Disaster Areas have been declared in Lismore, Ballina, Byron, Kyogle, Richmond Valley and Tweed LGAs, yet only Tweed and Lismore LGAs are eligible for financial support to assist them get back on their feet after this devastating event.”

Dawn Walker, Greens MLC said:

“Our community has suffered greatly from these floods with houses inundated, businesses destroyed and farmers decimated.

“While we absolutely support Tweed and Lismore LGA’s receiving disaster relief funding, it needs to recognised that areas in both Byron and Ballina Shires also suffered great damage. They should also be eligible for support under the Disaster Recovery Payment and Disaster Recovery Allowance programs.”  

Both Tamara Smith and Dawn Walker plan to move Notices of Motion into both Houses of the NSW Parliament calling on the NSW Government to support Byron and Ballina Shires inclusion for Disaster Relief Funding.

People affected by the flood in eligible areas can apply for a one-off payment of $1000 and a further $400 for each child under the age of 16 under the Commonwealth Disaster Recovery Program.

Those who have lost their income due to the flood can apply for a regular cash Disaster Recovery Allowance for up to 13 weeks.

For a list of available assistance visit the Natural Disaster Assistance Schemes page.

Help to fill out forms and needs assessment is available from the Salvation Army at the Mullumbimby District Neighbourhood Centre from today. Members of the public can also make donations or contribute grocery, gift and petrol vouchers to help those in need at the centre.

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