Dozens of NSW localities have been declared disaster areas due to the ongoing floods, unlocking the possibility for residents to apply for government funds.
Services Australia lists 34 local government areas in NSW as eligible for the Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment.
People living in those areas can claim up to $1,000 per adult and $400 for each child under 16 years old.
“We understand … you’re just thinking about how you can keep your family together and keep them safe, and direct payment is what is really useful for people,” NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian told reporters at a press conference on Monday.
The lump sum payment is available for residents in the relevant areas who are Australian residents or hold an eligible visa, are older than 16, and have been adversely affected by the floods.
Being adversely affected can mean being seriously injured, having a family member go missing or dying, or having one’s property or residence significantly damaged.
Significant damage means the residence has been destroyed, declared structurally unsound, or sustained major damage.
The home can also be eligible if its interior has been exposed to the elements or taken in sewage.
If a major asset has been damaged, such as a car, water tank or piece of machinery worth more than $20,000, that can also mean a person is eligible.
The local government areas that have been declared eligible are, as of midday Monday:
- Blue Mountains
- Canterbury Bankstown
- Central Coast
- Clarence Valley
- Coffs Harbour
- Dungog Shire
- The Hills
- Inner West
- Lake Macquarie
- Northern Beaches
- Port Macquarie-Hastings
- Port Stephens