What the new $2 billion national bushfire recovery fund will be spent on
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced a new $2 billion national bushfire recovery fund.
Over two years the federal government will use the fund to assist communities devastated by bushfires.
Treasurer Josh Frydenberg explained what the money will be used for.
“This money will be additional to the existing financial payments and allowances that we provide in the event of disaster and disaster recovery,” he told 3AW’s Nick McCallum, filling in for Tom Elliott.
“What this money will go towards is supporting small businesses, money that will go to local councils, a major mental health initiative to support those communities who have been affected, social and economic infrastructure, and importantly, environmental protection, particularly for the wildlife which has been so badly damaged.”
The money will be distributed by a new agency, which will be led by former Australian Federal Commissioner Andrew Colvin.
It is not yet clear how money will be allocated among states.
“Clearly the impact of the bushfires is devastating and it’s going to require an extensive and comprehensive recovery program. So we’ll work very closely with the states,” Mr Frydenberg said.
Already, 6000 insurance claims totally nearly $400 million in losses have been made by those affected by the fires.
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has also announced a permanent new state government agency to oversee the bushfire recovery effort.
Victoria Police Former Chief Commissioner Ken Lay will head the state agency.
The Andrews government has allocated $50 million to get Bushfire Recovery Victoria up and running.
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Image: Darrian Traynor / Stringer