Response and Recovery

See a list of all response, recovery and help options and information for families affected by the NSW bushfires.

 

Resilience NSW Recovery Support Services

Resilience NSW have developed a fact sheet outlining Recovery Support Services available to you.

Assistance from Community Links Wellbeing

Community Links Wellbeing have Recovery Support Service Officers who can offer free support and information to individuals and households. They can help navigate the systems and challenges resulting from the 2019/20 bushfires, linking you to personal, community and financial support services. Recovery Support Officers can come to your home, over the phone, via email, video call or meet in a public place. For further details phone (02) 4683 2776 or email info@communitylinks.org.au.

National Bushfire Recovery Agency

Visit the National Bushfire Recovery Agency to keep up to date with support available to you. You can also subscribe to their email list for regular updates.

Bushfire Assistance Gift Cards

Thanks to some very generous individuals and organisations, the Community Recovery Hub located at the Balmoral Village Hall is inviting you to apply for bushfire recovery assistance funding.

Red Cross Assistance

Please download the Red Cross Financial Assistance Information Sheet to find help available.

Mayor's Relief Fund

Wollondilly residents affected by the bushfires may apply for relief through our Mayor's Relief Fund.

For further details visit our Mayor's Relief Fund page.

Emergency Recovery Information Centre

See our Emergency Recovery Information Centre page for further details.

ALERT: The Community Recovery Hub operating from Balmoral Village Hall will be temporarily closed while Covid19 remains a health concern for our community.

Balmoral Community Recovery Centre

Volunteers from Picton CWA and Buxton RFS have set up a Community Recovery Hub in the Balmoral Hall to assist directly affected residents of both Wingecarribee and Wollondilly local government areas. For further information see our Emergency Recovery Information Centre page.

Service NSW Bushfire Customer Care Service

In response to the overwhelming amount of support offered by various companies and agencies, Service NSW has created the Bushfire Customer Care Service.

The service offers specialists to help guide you to the most relevant information and support available for residents and businesses impacted.

The Bushfire Customer Care website also offers a Disaster Assistance Finder where you can answer 6 questions to help tailor available programs and services to your needs.

For further information visit the Bushfire Customer Care Service website.

Anglicare

Anglicare is offering a range of services to ensure families get back on their feet including counselling, food, clothes and more. For further information please visit the Anglicare website.

Legal Aid Disaster Response Legal Service

Legal Aid is providing help for those affected by bushfires. Help is available for: Insurance, financial hardship, housing, employment and replacement of documents (e.g. Certificate of Title),Centrelink and more.

The Disaster Response Legal Service attends all Disaster Recovery Centres. People can also access the service by calling the Disaster Response HelpLine on 1800 801 529.

For Volunteer Firefighters

If you are a volunteer firefighter who is self-employed or employed by a small or medium business and have lost income, you may be eligible for the Volunteer Firefighter Payment.

For further details visit the Service NSW website.

Community Recovery Information Newsletters

Read the latest Bushfire Recovery Assistance Community Newsletter March 2020 for a range of recovery options.

For previous newsletters visit our Community Newsletter page.

Red Cross

Red Cross are providing emergency grants to those affected by bushfires from 1 July 2019 to 28 February 2020.

For further details please visit the Red Cross website.

Resources to help recover from disasters is also available on the Red Cross website.

Office of Emergency Management

The Office of Emergency Management has compiled a fact sheet with various assistance avenues. To view please read the Bushfire Recovery Assistance Fact Sheet.

Department of Human Services Disaster Recovery Allowance

The Department of Human Services is offering an allowance to those impacted by fires between August 2019 and January 2020.

You have until 1 July 2020 to make a claim.

For further details please visit the Department of Human Services website.

State and Federal Bushfire and Disaster Recovery Financial Assistance Information

The Government is offering various recovery assistance to those affected by the bushfires.

For further details visit our State and Federal Bushfire and Disaster Recovery page.

Australian Banking Association

Australian banks have hardship teams ready to assist homeowners, small business owners and volunteers with financial arrangements, depending on circumstances. 

Assistance could include; deferred loan payments, waiving fees and charges, helping with debt consolidation and waiving penalties for early withdrawal of a term deposit.

You can find your bank's hardship team on the Australian Banking Association website or you can alternatively call your bank.

Support for Bushfire Affected Landholders from NSW Land Registry Services

NSW Land Registry Services is offering landholders affected by the recent bushfires with access to the title searches and plan images of their property free of charge.

For further details visit our Support for Bushfire Affected Landholders page.

Commonwealth Bank 

Commonwealth Bank is offering Emergencing Assistance Packages, Bushfire Recovery Grants and is accepting donations.

To find out more details head to our Commonwealth bank Support page.

For further details visit their Disaster Relief Package website.

Westpac

Westpac has announced that its Disaster Relief Package is available for customers who are suffering hardship as a result of the recent disasters.

For further details visit their Customers Disaster Relief page.

NAB

NAB has announced their disaster relief package available for NAB customers including business customer.

For further details visit their Natural Disaster and Crisis Support page.

Telstra Assistance Package

Telstra have activated the 'Telstra Assistance Package' for our customers in the Balmoral, Bargo, Buxton, Couridjah, Lakesland, Nattai, Pheasants Nest, Tahmoor, Thirlmere & Yanderra areas who have been impacted by the Green Wattle Creek bushfire.

For further details visit our Telstra Assistance Package page.

Are You Insured?

There are recovery and assistance options those who are insured and are not.

For your options please visit our Are You Insured? page.

Australian Taxation Office (ATO)

The ATO will automatically grant deferrals for activity statement lodgements and payments due for anyone affected by the recent bushfires in the identified impacted postcodes. Full details of these deferrals and a list of impacted postcodes, visit the ATO website.

If anyone has been impacted by these bushfires and needs assistance with their tax affairs, they can contact the ATO on 1800 806 218 and they will work with them to get back on track. 

Bank help to those affected by bushfires 

Australians affected by the catastrophic bushfires are encouraged to contact their bank to access a wide range of available assistance.  

Banks have hardship teams ready to assist you with your financial arrangements, depending on your circumstances. 
 
Contact your bank for more information or visit Australian Banking Association.

Motor Vehicle Stamp Duty Relief

Financial assistance for eligible motorists whose cars have been written off as a result of bushfires, contact the Office of State Revenue 1300 139 814.

NSW Rural Assistance Authority

The $75,000 Special Disaster Grant- Bushfires is available to primary producers in declared Local Government Areas.

For further details and to apply, visit the Rural Assistance Authority website.

Council introduced a fast track concierge service to provide guidance on demolition or rebuilding fire damaged structures. Our Building Approval and Certification Team will gladly assist by providing advice on the best way forward.  They are available either by appointment or by phone 8.30am - 4pm weekdays on (02) 4677 1100.

Council will also waive development application fees for residents whose homes, outbuildings and businesses have been lost or rendered uninhabitable in the bushfire emergency, as follows:

a. Pre-lodgement advice fees;

b. Development application fees;

c. Construction & occupation certificate fees;

d. Pool inspection fees;

e. Related application fees under Section 68 of the Local Government Act and Section 138 of the Roads Act.

The tabs below also outline additional information:

  • available support for the clean-up and removal of bushfire debris from residences and immediately adjacent outbuildings
  • demolition of buildings damaged by bush fire
  • repairs necessary to make damaged dwellings safe and suitable for habitation
  • temporary use of shipping containers for storage purposes following a bush fire

Further Support for Primary Producers Announced

More support for bushfire-impacted primary producers across Australia was announced on 23 June 2020. The forestry industry, wine grape producers, and apple growers will soon benefit from $86 million in funding provided by the Australian Government. For further details download the National Bushfire Recovery Agency release.

Council Welcomes Support for Bushfire Impacted Small Business

Wollondilly Council has welcomed a new small business support grant of $10,000 from the NSW and Commonwealth governments which will assist local small businesses who have had a substantial loss of income due to the recent bushfires.

The grant will be available to any small business that has experienced a significant decline in revenue in a bushfire impacted local government area.

Wollondilly is one of 16 local government areas where the grant has been offered.

Council would like to encourage local businesses to apply for this support to help them re-establish themselves in the community.

The grants will be available to businesses that have been both directly and indirectly affected by the bushfires.

Applications will open on 16 March and can be made through the State government hotline on 13 77 88.

Further information on these grants is available on ServiceNSW website.

Facebook Small Business Support

If your small business has been affected by bushfires, a Facebook Small Business Support Specialist can contact you to understand your business challenges and offer guidance and assistance.

How can Facebook help?

  • Dedicated support for fire-affected business owners
  • Facebook business page coaching and advice
  • One-to-one business consultation with a Facebook Small Business Support Specialist
  • $200 AUD advertising coupon to help attract more customers
  • Regional workshops in online marketing to help boost fire-affected small businesses

Follow the link to register your details https://www.facebook.com/boost/bushfires

Small Business and Primary Producer- Natural Disaster Grants

Wollondilly Small Businesses, Primary Producers and Not-for-profit organisations have access to Federal-State recovery funding.

For further details visit our Small Business and Primary Producer Grant page.

Small Business Recovery

Read the Get Back to Business booklet provided by the Small Business Commissioner to see what you can do to get your small business on it's feet.

Recovery Grants

For information on recovery grants for business, visit ServiceNSW Business Support page

Information from the ATO

For information from the ATO, visit the ATO Bushfires page

Support from Centrelink

For support from Centrelink, visit Services Australia- Bushfires page.

Black Summer Innovation Program

The Black Summer Innovation Program (BSIP) is a fund provided by FIAL designed to help small and medium businesses, who have been affected by events of national natural catastrophe or global diseases outbreaks (in 2019 or 2020). Funding is designed to support these businesses innovate to create commercial products, processes or services.

Grants of up to $25,000 are available to Australian food and agribusinesses geographically located in and affected by drought, flood, fire, African Swine Flu and coronavirus epidemic. Grants are to be used to support business, product or service innovations. No matched funding is required.

The NSW Government is partnering with Minderoo Foundation’s Fire Fund to provide temporary accommodation pods, allowing those in need to stay on their own property while they rebuild.
The pods are stand-alone units with built in electricity, water, cooking and ablution facilities.
Minderoo Foundation’s Fire Fund will be responsible for the delivery and installation of the pods.

Read the Minderoo Temporary Accommodation fact sheet for further details.

The NSW Government will provide stamp duty relief for people who lost their homes during the bushfires and who chose to purchase a replacement home elsewhere rather than rebuild.

For further details read the Stamp Duty  Media Release.

The Australian Government  is providing services and information to bushfire affected communities across the country. The packs provide information and contact details available to the following groups:

Residents

This pack provides information and contact details for Residents that require support. Download the Part A: Support for Residents pack.

Small Businesses

This pack provides information and contact details for Small Businesses that require support. Download the Part B: Support for Small Business pack.

Indigenous Residents

This pack provides information and contact details for indigenous residents that require support. Download the Part C: Support for Indigenous Australians pack.

Laing O'Rourke and NSW Government Bushfire Clean-Up Hub

An information hub has been created to identify steps families must take to ensure their bushfire waste is removed. For further details visit the NSW Bushfire Clean-Up Information Hub website.

Service NSW

The NSW Government and the Commonwealth are covering the full cost of cleaning up eligible NSW properties that have been destroyed by bushfires since 1 July 2019.

For further information visit the Service NSW website or download the Service NSW Bushfire Property Cleanup Fact Sheet.

NSW EPA

For fact sheets and information on how to clean up bushfire impacted waste visit NSW EPA Bushfire Information page.

NSW Public Works

NSW Public Works will be working with both insured and non-insured residents to assist with the clean-up of their properties.

For further details please call the Public Works Advisory Line: 1800 88 55 39.

Community Recovery Information Newsletters

Read the latest Bushfire Recovery Assistance Community Newsletter January 2020 or the Community Recovery Information for a range of recovery options.

For previous newsletters visit our Community Newsletter page.

Fire Impacted Waste and Spoiled Food Waste

For details visit our Fire Impacted Waste and Spoiled Food Waste page.

Demolition or Rebuilding Fire Damaged Structures

For details on bushfires damages building clean-up and rebuilding fire damaged structures visit our Demolition or Rebuilding Fire Damaged Structures page.

Bargo Waste Management Centre

Bargo Waste Management Centre is open to receive waste. Operational hours are 8.30am till 4.15pm 7 days per week – fees apply for this service, however residents identified by NSW RFS to have a fire affected property would have received a Council letter with information regarding disposal options and types of materials and items which can be disposed of free of charge.

Are You Insured?

There are recovery and assistance options those who are insured and are not. 

For your options please visit our Are You Insured? page.

Public Land Boundary Fencing Program

The NSW Government has committed $209 million to help bushfire-affected landholders with the cost of rebuilding boundary fences adjoining public lands. Visit the Local Land Services for full details or download the Media Release.

NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment

Information on re-builing and recovery can be found on the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment's Bushfire recovery page.

Building on Land Impacted by the Bushfires

Download the Application for Approval to Install a Manufactured Home, Moveable Dwelling or Associated Structure on Land Affected by Bushfire to apply for a 12 month approval.

For further details please visit our moveable dwellings on land affected by bushfire page.

Architects Assist

Architects Assist is providing relief to those who have limited or no funds to re-build by providing disaster recovery architecture and design pro bono services. For further details visit the Architects Assist website.

Planning Institute of Australia

You can use the Planning Institute of Australia's "Find a Planner" tool to search for planners who can help with the re-build of your home. Visit the Planning Institute of Australia's website for further details.

Demolition or Rebuilding Fire Damaged Structures

For details on bushfires damages building clean-up and rebuilding fire damaged structures visit our Demolition or Rebuilding Fire Damaged Structures page.

Australian Institute of Architects

The Australian Institute of Architects has free practice notes available for architects which may be of use during this period. For further details visit the Australian Institute of Architects website.

Increased Costs of Rebuilding After Bushfires

New building standards and codes mean certain materials can no longer be used and additional features are required.

For further details read the Increased Costs of Rebuilding After Bushfires fact sheet.

New Biodiversity Assessment Method

A revised Biodiversity Assessment Method has been introduced for fire impacted properties.  You may want to refer to this document for completing your DA application.

Biodiversity Offset Scheme Support

New Biodiversity Assessment Method Information

Injured Wildlife

To see how you can help injured wildlife, please visit our Injured Wildlife page.

Feeding Wildlife

To see what you can and cannot do to help feed wildlife, please visit our Feeding Wildlife page.

Pets and Livestock

To see what help and advice is available for caring for your pets and livestock, please visit our Pets and Livestock page.

Government Pledges $50 million for Wildlife Impacted by Bushfires

Approximately 1.25 billion animals are thought to be lost in the 2019/20 bushfires. For further information about the Government's $50 million pledge, read the ABC News article.

Funding for Wildlife Carers and Organisations

Immediate funding is available via Wildlife Heroes. Please visit the Wildlife Heroes website for further details.

Visit our Health, Safety and Wellbeing page for helpline contacts and advice.

 

Service NSW can help replace many of your personal documents free of charge if they were damaged or destroyed. This includes birth certificates, marriage certificates, licences and number plates.

Service NSW:
Call 13 77 88 or visit their website 

Recovery Workshop Anne Leadbeater 28 February 2020

If you are a local business wondering how you can help the community get back on its feet, watch the Recovery Workshop video to find out more.

Bushfire Recovery Meeting, Buxton 17 February 2020

To watch the full meeting, visit our Bushfire Recovery Meeting, Buxton page.

Local Recovery and Resilience Committee Meeting Minutes

For a full list of Committee Meeting Minutes, visit our Local Recovery and Resilience Committee Meeting Minutes page.

Bushfire Relief Meeting, Bargo 13 January 2020

To watch the full meeting, visit our Bushfire Relief Meeting page.

Bushfire Event 2019-20 Summary of Council Actions

A summary of Council actions in response to the 2019-20 bushfires can be found in our Bushfire Event 2019/20- Wollondilly Council document.

Media Releases

Wollondilly Shire Council: Read the Media Release To Fast Track Re-Building Efforts for Fire Affected Residents.

Office of Emergency Management: A list of Media Releases regarding re-building and offering support can be found on the Office of Emergency Management's Media Release List.

As part of bushfire recovery and clean-up, Laing O'Rourke have been selected by the NSW Government to undertake the first phase of recovery clean-up works following recent bushfires across the State. For further details visit the Prime Minister of Australia website and Laing O'Rourke website.