Federal Disaster Payments Activated For North Queensland Floods

The Albanese Government has now activated federal disaster assistance payments to flood-affected Queenslanders experiencing ongoing extreme monsoon activity and rainfall.

The Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment (AGDRP) is available from today to residents in the Queensland Local Government Areas (LGAs) of Boulia, Burke and Mount Isa.

The AGDRP is a one-off payment of $1000 per eligible adult and $400 per eligible child who have suffered a significant loss as a result of the floods, including a severely damaged or destroyed home or a serious injury.

The Government’s Disaster Recovery Allowance (DRA) is also available to employees or sole traders who work or live in the LGAs of Boulia, Burke, Carpentaria, Cloncurry, Doomadgee, Mornington and Mount Isa.

The DRA provides up to 13 weeks of federal income support to assist people who experience a loss of income as a direct result of a major disaster.

Equivalent financial assistance is available to eligible New Zealand citizens holding ‘non-protected Special Category and subclass 444 visas.

The latest support is in addition to the jointly-funded Commonwealth-State disaster assistance which is already being delivered to 41 Queensland LGAs. It includes:

  • Support for individuals through the Personal Hardship Assistance Grants (PHAS)
  • Support for local governments to undertake counter disaster operations, clean up, and repair essential public assets
  • Support for primary producers to repair or replace damaged buildings, plant, equipment or livestock, to continue doing business, and move stock, feed, machinery and other operational necessities.

The AGDRP and DRA can be applied for through Services Australia from 2pm today, Friday 17 March 2023.

Information about payment eligibility is available on the Services Australia website.

The easiest way for people to claim is online through myGov. If people need help to claim, they can call the Australian Government Emergency Information Line on 180 22 66.

People impacted by the floods can also pause or change their Centrelink debt repayments using the Money you owe service online in either their Centrelink online account, or Express Plus Centrelink mobile app. Alternatively, they can call 1800 076 072.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Government Services, the Hon Bill Shorten:

My thoughts are with these communities and I encourage these Queenslanders to check their eligibility for disaster assistance available through Services Australia.

The AGDRP - a modest replacement income of $1000 - will support those in the immediate recovery from this disaster, helping them pay for the things they need after suffering significant losses.

We’re also providing support to those who experience financial hardship because they are unable to work as a result of this disaster.

DRA will help those who have lost income, so they can continue to pay their bills.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Emergency Management, Murray Watt:

The Albanese Government has been working around the clock with the Palaszczuk Government to ensure appropriate rescue equipment, supplies and support is available to flood-impacted areas.

This latest financial support builds on the assistance already rolled out, and will help Queenslanders with urgent needs like food and clothing, as well as providing some security to people who’ve experienced work disruptions as a result of this weather event.

Through the National Emergency Management Agency, we are in constant communication with the Australian Defence Force and the Queensland Government, and will continue to stand with Queenslanders in these tough times.