Extraordinary disaster assistance of $105 million is now available to local councils and state agencies to clean up and repair community and recreational assets damaged in the major floods of the 2021-22 disaster season.
The funding is part of the $150 million Community and Recreational Assets Program, which includes $45 million to directly support not-for-profit community sporting clubs affected by the recent flood and rain events.
Federal Minister for Emergency Management, Senator the Hon Murray Watt said Expressions of Interest had now opened for the funding, which is available to councils and state agencies in 37 flood-affected local government areas.
“Through the Australian and Queensland Governments working together to support flood-impacted communities, a total of $100 million is available for the repair of recreational and community assets, while $5 million will be spent to repair recreational assets in public parks,” Senator Watt said.
“We have all seen graphic examples of the flooding causing widespread damage to community and recreational assets in important areas such as public parks, reserves and playgrounds.
“We know how important sport and recreation is for community recovery from significant disasters. These places provide people a place to meet, check in with one another and stay active.
“Queenslanders love their sport, and the floods this year have left significant damage. This is a chance for eligible councils and state agencies to apply for funding to clean up, repair and, in some cases, make these important recreational assets more resilient to future floods,” he said.
Deputy Premier and Minister responsible for the Queensland Reconstruction Authority Steven Miles urged councils and state agencies affected by the recent extraordinary weather events to submit an Expression of Interest.
“I have travelled to many of the communities that have been impacted by the major floods this year and the damage to recreational assets has been substantial,” Mr Miles said.
“From the South East Queensland floods many would have seen the damage to the Kedron Brook Bikeway and the Bicentennial Bikeway in and around Brisbane and also to Ipswich City Council’s Colleges Crossing Recreational Reserve.
“Gympie Regional Council has faced some major challenges this year after being hit by major flooding multiple times and its local recreational and community facilities such as the Tansey Showgrounds have been severely damaged.
“Other councils such as Goondiwindi, South Burnett and the Fraser Coast have reported major damage and this funding will be available to repair assets that are traditionally not eligible for funding under the standard Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA).
“In addition, the three severe rainfall and flooding events has also seen a large amount of damage to nature-based recreation and fire management infrastructure within the Queensland national parks and state forests.
“More than 40 national parks, conservation parks and key visitor areas managed by the Department of Environment and Science between Hervey Bay and the Gold Coast have been impacted and $5 million will be available to help repair those.
“Fixing damaged recreational facilities will help restore social and community networks and can also help the economic recovery of local communities that rely on these assets for tourism and visitor numbers,” he said.
The Community and Recreational Assets Program is part of a $721 million jointly funded Commonwealth and Queensland Government DRFA exceptional circumstances package for Queensland which includes human and social recovery, economic, environmental and infrastructure recovery.
The Queensland Reconstruction Authority is administering this $105 million program.