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Queensland aims to lower premiums with council grants

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The Queensland Government has provided funding for local council projects under a disaster risk reduction program that aims to help lower the cost of insurance in northern Queensland.

Local governments in coastal communities from Bundaberg to the NT border will be able to apply for grants through a $10 million North Queensland Natural Disasters Mitigation Program.

Deputy Premier and Minister responsible for the Queensland Reconstruction Authority Steven Miles says funds could be used for physical works, such as drainage systems, as well as studies or investigations including flood height surveys or flood mapping that improve understanding of a community’s risk.

“North and Far North Queenslanders face many challenges from Mother Nature and this is an opportunity to reduce those impacts while also making insurance more affordable in their communities,” he said.

Mr Miles says Insurance Council of Australia modelling suggests that in Townsville and Cairns alone, reducing flood risk through permanent mitigation measures could reduce insurance premiums by up to 21%.

“With close to 90 natural disasters over the past decade, Queensland gets hit harder than any other state in the country,” he said. “Unfortunately, over that period some insurance premiums have skyrocketed making insurance unaffordable for some of our most vulnerable communities, particularly in the north and far north.”

The Queensland Reconstruction Authority will administer the program, which is expected to be open for applications late this year, with projects to be delivered by December 2023.