Katters doing the heavy lifting in gulf floods

Mar 13, 2023

Chartering a plane and carting a load of plastic tubs filled with eggs, bread and non-perishable items to the residents of affected communities was the least the KAP leaders could do in response to the unprecedented flooding affecting the gulf regions of north Queensland.

Meanwhile, in telling their state and federal counterparts to get a move on with relief efforts, the Katter MPs are requesting that, for starters, residents, many of whom have been evacuated to Mt Isa leaving pets, livestock and all their belongings behind, be provided with the same kind of immediate financial assistance that Townsville and the SEQ benefited from in 2019.

In the aftermath of the 2019 floods in Townsville, those affected got a hardship payment same as now, but also an additional $1000 per adult and $400 per child through the federal government.   Right now, the present-day evacuees can look forward to $180 ($900 for families) in hard cash in an emergency hardship assistance payment, enough for a few nights in a motel, a couple of pizzas, and a few odds and ends, and a tube of Sensodyne, if they’re lucky.   Mind you, 2019 was an election year.

Locals experienced flooding in 09, 11 and in the 1990s, but are saying this year has been the worst a lot of them have seen with over a metre of rain.   They are also saying they got a lot more media coverage in 2009, even though they’ve had more rain this year.

Every 10 or 20 years there’s an explosion of water … Food is lean on the shelves and there’s no fuel for rescue and emergency services.   We need “Category D” declarations in some areas so we can get some funding out there.  It’s a long way from the cities but there’s people crying out for help.