Disaster assistance is now available for people impacted by the Duck Creek fire in the Pilliga forest, which has burned more than 130,000 hectares.
The fire started on December 8 and the assistance measures are being provided by the federal and state governments via the Commonwealth-State Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA).
The support includes:
- Assistance for eligible residents to help meet immediate needs like emergency accommodation or small cash payments to purchase essential items generally provided from evacuation or recovery centres.
- Grants for eligible residents to replace lost essential household items to maintain basic standard of living.
- Grants for eligible residents to undertake essential structural repairs to restore their homes to a safe and habitable condition.
- Support for affected local councils to help with the costs of cleaning up and restoring damaged essential public assets.
- Concessional interest rate loans for small businesses, primary producers, sporting and recreation clubs, and non-profit organisations to repair or replace damaged or destroyed property.
- Freight subsidies for primary producers to help transport livestock and fodder.
Federal Minister for Emergency Management, Senator Murray Watt, said the fires had burned through more than 130,000 hectares in the Pilliga State Forest.
"This is a large bushfire that has been fuelling dangerous fire-generated thunderstorms with smoke visible from hundreds of kilometres away," Mr Watt said.
NSW Minister for Emergency Services Jihad Dib said fire effected community members and primary producers would be supported in their clean-up and recovery.
"Work to assess the impact is being conducted as quickly as possible, and this is the first step in making assistance available to those in need," Mr Dib said.
"The scale and intensity of this fire is a reminder of the dangers we face over summer."
"Recent rain is a welcome change for firefighters as they work to contain the fire following threats to life and property over the past week."
NSW Member for Barwon Roy Butler said this fire could have been far more devastating had it not been for the efforts of emergency service staff and volunteers.
"Even yesterday there were about 200 people out on the fire ground, and 60 people from various agencies in the Fire Control Centre," he said.
"Without volunteers and community assistance none of this would have been possible."
- For information relating to financial assistance, replacing lost documents, location of your nearest recovery centre and more, contact Service NSW, 13 77 88, or visit www.nsw.gov.auamp;source=gmail&ust=1703301883984000&usg=AOvVaw3DM8hv3j1WeuJGctWmoe6d" www.nsw.gov.au
- To apply for a concessional loan or primary producer grant, contact the NSW Rural Assistance Authority, 1800 678 593, or visit www.raa.nsw.gov.auamp;source=gmail&ust=1703301883984000&usg=AOvVaw0DxXi7wxH2ooH9h4M9x45N" www.raa.nsw.gov.au
- For more information, visit: www.disasterassist.gov.auamp;source=gmail&ust=1703301883984000&usg=AOvVaw15QkN4eyyKp_rO4fDIc8r4" www.disasterassist.gov.au