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Relief funding announced for flood-affected areas in Mid West Gascoyne after heavy rain in March

Anna CoxGeraldton Guardian
Roads closed in Meekatharra after rain floods the region.
Camera IconRoads closed in Meekatharra after rain floods the region. Credit: supplied

Communities in Western Australia’s Mid West, Gascoyne and Pilbara regions affected by a severe thunderstorm and subsequent flooding in late March and early April can now access disaster recovery funding.

It was announced in a joint statement from Federal Minister for Emergency Management Murray Watt and WA Minister for Emergency Services Stephen Dawson MLC.

The City of Greater Geraldton and the shires of Cue, East Pilbara, Meekatharra, Murchison, Upper Gascoyne and Wiluna are now eligible for assistance through the joint funded Commonwealth State Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements.

Under the arrangements, assistance can be provided for eligible affected individuals, small businesses, primary producers, State agencies and local governments.

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Assistance comes in the form of support for temporary living expenses, housing repairs, concessional loans for small businesses and farmers, freight subsidies and help for councils to undertake emergency road repairs.

On March 29, a severe thunderstorm affected the Mid West, Gascoyne and Pilbara regions until April 4. The thunderstorm brought heavy rain which caused flooding across the City of Greater Geraldton and the shires of Cue, East Pilbara, Meekatharra, Murchison, Upper Gascoyne and Wiluna.

“The financial support announced today will help cover the costs associated with repairing essential public assets and restoring important road networks that are vital to the State’s supply chains,” Mr Dawson said.

The storm disrupted communities with flooding resulting in sections of Great Northern Highway and some local roads being closed because of damage and debris.

“Flood recovery is complex and challenging in remote areas, particularly when roads and infrastructure are impacted and damaged,” Mr Watt said.

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