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Commonwealth disaster assistance for Byron

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The Hon Michael Keenan MP Minister for Justice

Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Counter Terrorism


26 July 2017

Commonwealth disaster assistance for Byron

Minister for Justice Michael Keenan today announced that the Australian Government has activated the Disaster Recovery Payment and the Disaster Recovery Allowance for eligible disaster affected residents in the local government area of Byron, New South Wales.

By working closely with the New South Wales Government and Byron Shire Council it has become clear that additional Australian Government assistance is needed to support the community of Byron with their recovery from the floods that occurred in late March following Tropical Cyclone Debbie.

These payments will ensure that those who have lost their homes or livelihoods have the additional assistance they need to help them recovery as quickly as possible.

The Disaster Recovery Payment provides a one-off, non-means tested payment of $1,000 for eligible adults and $400 for eligible children who have been adversely affected by floods. People eligible for the Disaster Recovery Payment are those who have lost their homes or suffered injury as a result of the disaster.

The Disaster Recovery Allowance provides a short-term income support payment to assist individuals who can demonstrate their income has been affected as a direct result of the floods. People eligible for the Disaster Recovery Allowance can access income assistance for up to 13 weeks, equivalent to the maximum rate of Newstart Allowance or Youth Allowance.

Equivalent financial assistance will also be available to eligible New Zealand citizens (non-protected Special Category Visa, subclass 444 holders) who were affected by the floods in Byron.

The easiest way to lodge a claim for the Australian Government’s disaster recovery payments is by calling the Australian Government Emergency Information Line on 180 22 66 between 8am and 7pm, Monday to Friday and between 8am and 5pm, Saturday to Sunday, or via

Completed claim forms can also be lodged in person at an Australian Department of Human Services service centre, agent or access point.

The Australian Government assistance being announced today is over and above the support already being provided under the jointly funded Commonwealth-State Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements.

Further information on Australian Government assistance is available online at

Media Contacts: Danielle McKay 0438 390 273 or Shannen Wilkinson 0476 820 816