Hon Reece Whitby MLA

Hon Reece Whitby MLA

Minister for Environment; Climate Action; Racing and Gaming

    Joint media statement - Expanded Support for Cyclone-Affected Communities

    19/05/2021 3:55 PM

    Further assistance has been activated under the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements for the first time in Western Australia following the impacts of Severe Tropical Cyclone Seroja.


    The Commonwealth-State Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements had already been activated in the immediate response to Severe Tropical Cyclone Seroja, but the inclusion of Category C and Category D measures further enhance the level of assistance available to the impacted communities.


    The expanded level of assistance will fund a clean-up program and community recovery support package for 13 local governments affected by the devastating cyclone, with costs covered on a 50:50 basis by the Australian and Western Australian Governments.


    The State Government is working directly with the impacted local governments, in consultation with the Australian Government and the Insurance Council of Australia, to ensure a targeted clean-up program is established.


    In addition to this clean-up support, five community recovery officers will be employed over two years to work across the impacted local government areas and support the long-term recovery of those communities.


    Minister for Emergency Management David Littleproud said this program would support affected communities, including small business owners and primary producers.


    "The program will include clean-up and restoration activities for community, recreational, cultural, heritage and environmental assets," Minister Littleproud said.


    "Community recovery officers will establish a local presence and work with local governments and not-for-profit organisations to provide community recovery support that is tailored and meaningful."


    Western Australian Minister for Emergency Services Reece Whitby said the expansion of disaster recovery assistance reflected the devastating impacts of Severe Tropical Cyclone Seroja across the Mid-West.


    "Severe Tropical Cyclone Seroja will be remembered as one of the worst cyclones to hit Western Australia, impacting an area over 130,000 square kilometres in size, and the State Government is committing to providing the highest level of support possible to those affected communities," Minister Whitby said.


    "While it was incredibly fortunate that no lives were lost, the destructive winds associated with Seroja damaged more than 1,100 buildings and caused widespread devastation across agricultural land.


    "The State Government said from the outset that we would do everything we could to support these communities get back on their feet, and this commitment of further assistance demonstrates that we're in this for the long haul."


    Information on disaster assistance is available on the Australian Government's Disaster Assist website at disasterassist.gov.au


    WA Emergency Services Minister's office - 6552 6300