Labor has criticised the Berejiklian-Barilaro Government for failing to provide comprehensive and consistent assistance packages for small businesses recovering from Cyclone Debbie in March 2017. Category C funding only started flowing to small businesses nearly 6 months after the declaration of the natural disaster and application forms were so confusing that those who were not assisted by the Small Business Commissioner’s team may not have known they were eligible to claim.
I convey my condolences to the member for Heathcote. On 6 January 2016, nine months after the April super storm, the Hunter was again inundated. Maitland received, in some areas, up to 200 millimetres of rain within 24 hours and our farmers were devastated. Some of the comments from members opposite about Labor not caring about such matters were of great interest to me. A large section of the Labor conference was devoted to talking about country and regional issues. In his sp
Today I spoke with two local farmers, one from Maitland and one from Morpeth about the issues they are facing with two storm events in 9 months. I repeated my call on the State Government to apply to the Federal Government for Category C funding and I have asked the government to review the eligibility criteria. Farmers know they are subject to floods, and they plan and manage for that, but a one in a 100 year event followed up by the massive rainfalls we have had in January,
Member for Maitland, Jenny Aitchison, has called for more assistance for farmers in the wake of a second major flood event in nine months.
After a meeting with local farmers Luke Dunford from Morpeth and Michelle Viola from Maitland today, Ms Aitchison said the Government is failing to help farmers who have been struggling to recover from the April 2015 floods. “The State Government has been dragging their feet on natural disaster declarations and applications to the Fed