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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Deputy Premier, Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning
    The Honourable Jeff Seeney

    Category D flood assistance critical to protect Burnett-Bundaberg jobs and businesses

    Deputy Premier, Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning
    The Honourable Jeff Seeney

    Wednesday, February 13, 2013

    Category D flood assistance critical to protect Burnett-Bundaberg jobs and businesses

    The Newman Government is seeking activation of Category D assistance under the National Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA) for areas worst hit by the Australia Day floods. 

    Deputy Premier Jeff Seeney said today the Premier had written to the Prime Minister and the Queensland Government was now awaiting a response. 

    “In the hardest hit areas of the Burnett and Bundaberg, Category D assistance under the NDRRA will be critical for the economic recovery of the region and is urgently needed,” Mr Seeney told Parliament this afternoon. 

    “Intensive agricultural industries are central to the regional economy. Those industries are based along the river and, as we heard yesterday, they have been hard hit by the natural disaster. 

    “The citrus orchards stretching from north of Mundubbera to south of Gayndah in the central Burnett and the horticultural farms closer to Bundaberg are big employers and provide the basis for a range of other service industries and small business service providers. 

    “Maintaining those employment levels is critical, not just to the farmers and orchardists, but to every business in these country towns and it is a point that was repeatedly made to everyone who visited in the wake of the flood disaster. 

    “The key to any economic recovery in the Burnett is to maintain the high employment levels in what have always been labour intensive industries.” 

    Mr Seeney said the Newman Government had moved quickly to expedite the assistance measures available under the NDRRA following the destruction and devastation caused by ex-tropical cyclone Oswald. 

    Categories A and B assistance were activated in the early stages of the natural disaster and Category C declarations have been rolled out progressively with further areas being declared yesterday. 

    He said a positive response to the request to activate Category D provisions would be critical if stricken agricultural producers were to be able to employ the large work forces they needed. 

    “These producers need to be able to rebuild and repair their businesses so they can keep underwriting the local economies. 

    “The ball is now firmly in the Commonwealth's court to activate Category D so the economic recovery can be expedited.” 

    Areas already receiving Categories A, B and C NDRRA assistance are:

    Bundaberg Regional Council                           Fraser Coast Regional Council

    North Burnett Regional Council                       Lockyer Valley Regional Council

    Gympie Regional Council                                South Burnett Regional Council

    Gladstone Regional Council                            Scenic Rim Regional Council

    Parts of Ipswich City Council                          Parts of Somerset Regional Council

    Parts of Goondiwindi Regional Council           Parts of Banana Regional Council

    Parts of Toowoomba Regional Council

     

    [ENDS] 13 February 2013                           Media Contact: John Wiseman 0409 791 281