Support available for flood-affected SMEs


Source: Unsplash/Chris Gallagher.

As devastating rains continue in Queensland and New South Wales, small businesses across the region are facing a new crisis and need support.

Meanwhile, Defense Secretary Peter Dutton has drawn ridicule after launching a GoFundMe page to raise money for a flood-affected community in his constituency.

While he promised that “every dollar” would go directly to residents and businesses, Twitter commentators – rather predictably – wondered if that shouldn’t be the government’s very role.

Here is some of the actual government support available to flood-affected businesses.


Disaster Recovery Funding arrangements, which are activated for individual council areas in the event of an emergency, have been made available in 13 local government areas in Western Queensland and 17 in South East Queensland. queensland.

These areas are: Barcoo, Boulia, Bulloo, Burke, Cloncurry, Diamantina, Flinders, Longreach, McKinlay, Mount Isa, Paroo, Quilpie, Winton, Brisbane, Fraser Coast, Gold Coast, Gympie, Ipswich, Lockyer Valley, Logan, Moreton Bay , Noosa, North Burnett, Redland, Scenic Rim, Somerset, South Burnett, Southern Downs, Sunshine Coast and Toowoomba.

Disaster Assistance Loans

Under the DRFA, affected businesses can access a disaster assistance loan of up to $250,000 for up to 10 years.

These loans are intended to help businesses resume normal operations and can be used to repair or replace damaged equipment, repair or replace buildings, or meet rent and rate requirements.

Loans under this scheme must be secured by a land mortgage or other asset deemed satisfactory by the Queensland Rural and Industry Development Authority (QRIDA).

Learn more about disaster assistance loans here.

Essential working capital loans

Businesses can also access loans of up to $100,000 over up to 10 years to cover working capital expenses.

These expenses could include the payment of wages or salaries; pay rent or tariffs; pay creditors; and the purchase of items essential to the operation of the business, such as fuel.

These loans must also be secured by a land mortgage or other asset satisfactory to QRIDA.

Learn more about essential working capital loans here.

Freight subsidies for primary producers

Transportation subsidy payments of up to $5,000 are available to eligible primary producers.

These grants can cover travel costs for emergency fodder for livestock; moving building or fencing materials, or machinery and other equipment; and moving purchased animals to restock after a disaster.

Primary producers may also have access to farm management grants, replanting or restocking grants, and recovery and resilience grants.

Learn more about freight subsidies here, and learn more about support for primary producers here.

Disaster Recovery Special Grants

It is believed that special disaster recovery grants will also be available under the DRFA.

These can provide up to $25,000 for affected small businesses and up to $50,000 for affected primary producers.

Grants are intended to cover the cost of renting or purchasing equipment or materials; remove debris; replace fences; and other costs of the cleanup and recovery process.

They may also cover repairs to premises and interior fittings which may not be covered by insurance.

To learn more about special disaster recovery grants, click here.

New South Wales

Although the NSW government does not appear to have announced specific support for flood-affected businesses at this time, the federal government has pledged an additional $200 million for the long-term recovery of flood-affected communities. flooding in the state.

This brings the jointly funded state and federal disaster recovery funding arrangements to $800 million.

Recovery scheme for NSW primary producers

This funding includes the $80 million Storm and Flood Industry Recovery Program, designed to support primary producers in New South Wales.

The program provides grants of up to $75,000 for cleanup and recovery measures for businesses that have suffered damage as a direct result of a disaster.

While applications for this program currently show as closed, it is believed that they will reopen for businesses affected by the latest flooding.

You can read more about the Storm and Flood Industry Recovery Program here.


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