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  • Writer's pictureMagnetic Community News

Phillip Thompson calls for Disaster Funding to be unlocked

Pictured above: One of hundreds of trees that succumbed to the Cyclone Kirrily event on Magnetic Island

Federal Member for Herbert Phillip Thompson is calling on the Federal and State Labor Governments to unlock disaster relief grants of up to $1,000 for individuals and $75,000 for businesses.

Mr Thompson said the funding was desperately required for some community members who had suffered significant financial difficulties after Cyclone Kirrily hit Townsville last Thursday night.

He said he’d written to the Federal Labor Minister for Emergency Management requesting the Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment (AGDRP) be activated for the severe weather event, unlocking one-off payments for $1,000 per eligible adult and $400 per eligible child.

“Whilst some in our community may have had minimal disruption, many people have been without power, lost hundreds of dollars worth of food, haven’t been able to attend work and had damage to their property,” Mr Thompson said.

“The overwhelming feedback I’m getting is that the current financial hardship grants of $180 just aren’t cutting it.

“People have had fences knocked over – leaving their properties unsecure amid a crime crisis. They’re also losing food and time at work when there are serious cost-of-living challenges as it is.”

Mr Thompson has also written to the State Labor Minister for Disaster Recovery, requesting $75,000 grants for small businesses to hire or purchase equipment and materials, clean up, remove debris, replace fencing and other costs associated with the recovery process.

This would match grants available to those affected by Cyclone Jasper.

“Business owners have contacted me about the financial strain of undertaking repairs and getting their businesses operational again – particularly in the broader context of rising costs,” Mr Thompson said.

“Given the importance of small and family business to Townsville, the support these grants would provide is essential.”

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