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Government support for Katherine flood victims recognised.

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Media Release


Minister for Regional Development, Territories and Local Government




The Federal Minister for Territories, Alex Somlyay, was today delighted to accept a cert ificate of appreciation from the Mayor of Katherine, Cr Jim Forscutt, in recognition of the Commonwealth Government’s assistance in rebuilding the town of Katherine after the devastating floods experienced in January this year.


On behalf of the Katherine community, Mayor Forscutt expressed gratitude for the role played by the Commonwealth and its agencies in the immediate aftermath of the floods, and in the period since, as the community struggled to cope with the loss of homes, possessions and businesses.


He mentioned in particular the sterling efforts of Defence Force personnel, in helping clean-up the town, and the work of agencies like Centrelink, in providing rapid emergency relief and income support.


He also acknowledged the importance of the Federal Government’s special financial assistance package for Katherine; which involved a commitment of $42 million for the restoration of public infrastructure and for the provision of cash grants to each adult and child in the community ($1,000 per adult and $250 per child).


The Federal Government also contributed $3 million to the Katherine Region Redevelopment fund to provide local businesses with an immediate $10,000 ‘kick start’ to allow them to keep trading and employing staff.


Mr Somlyay thanked Mayor Forscutt for recognising the Commonwealth’s assistance but remarked that ‘the best news of all is to hear of the impressive steps being taken by the residents of Katherine and district as they rebuild their community.’


As well as making a presentation to Mr Somlyay, Mayor Forscutt passed on certificates of appreciation to the Prime Minister and the Minister for Defence Industry, Science and Personnel, the Hon Bronwyn Bishop.



18 May 1998


Contact: Graeme Hallett (Minister’s office) 02 6277 7060