NEW DISASTER RECOVERY FUNDING ARRANGEMENTS (DRFA) EVENT – New South Wales – Cessnock NSW Bushfires (14 December onwards)

On 19 December 2023, the NSW Reconstruction Authority (NSWRA) submitted a formal DRFA notification for bushfires in NSW that occurred from 14 December 2023 onwards.

Event description: 

On the 14 December 2023 three bushfires were identified in the area of Abermain. The bushfires combined and continued to threatened multiple towns in the Cessnock Local Government Area.

Disaster assistance is now available in the Cessnock Local Government Area (LGA) following impacts of fires from 14 December 2023.

The assistance measures are being provided by the Albanese and Minns Governments through the Commonwealth-State Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA).

Support includes:

  • Assistance for eligible residents to help meet immediate needs like emergency accommodation or small cash payments to purchase essential items generally provided from evacuation or recovery centres.
  • Grants for eligible residents to replace lost essential household items to maintain basic standard of living.
  • Grants for eligible residents to undertake essential structural repairs to restore their homes to a safe and habitable condition.
  • Support for affected local councils to help with the costs of cleaning up and restoring damaged essential public assets.
  • Concessional interest rate loans for small businesses, primary producers, sporting and recreation clubs, and non-profit organisations to repair or replace damaged or destroyed property.
  • Freight subsidies for primary producers to help transport livestock and fodder.

For information relating to financial assistance, replacing lost documents, the location of your nearest recovery centre and more, please contact Service NSW on 13 77 88 or visit

To apply for a concessional loan or primary producer grant, contact the NSW Rural Assistance Authority on 1800 678 593 or visit

Further information on disaster assistance can be found on the Australian Government’s Disaster Assist website at

Bushfire Recovery Centre will be open at Weston Civic Centre, 28/30 Second Street Weston.

  • Thursday 21 December 2023 – 12pm to 6.30pm
  • Friday 22 December 2023 – 9.30am to 2.30pm

Anyone not able to attend the Recovery Assistance Point can contact Service NSW for remote assistance, with Customer Care specialists available on the phone via 13 77 88. Specialist mental health Bushfire Recovery Clinicians are also available by calling 1800 011 511.

Click here for a full fact sheet

For information Financial support after a natural disaster visit – Financial support after a natural disaster | Service NSW

DRFA assistance measures

The attached DRFA Factsheet contains information on the DRFA assistance measures being made publicly available by the New South Wales Government.