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Queensland boosts cyclone resilience funding

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The Queensland Government has announced funding to extend a grants program that helps improve the resilience of homes and reduces premiums in cyclone-affected regions.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk says the Household Resilience Program has already proved successful in supporting local jobs and helping people save on household insurance premiums.

“We are extending this program with another $11.25 million, and I welcome the Federal Government’s commitment to provide $10 million of funding,” she said today.

The State Government says 1749 households from Bundaberg to Cape York Peninsula have already seen insurance premiums reduced by an average of $310 under the program.

Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) Head of Risk and Operations Karl Sullivan has welcomed the additional commitment for a program that insurers have identified as essential.

“While modest in size for now compared to the scale of the problem, the program is a practical and meaningful step towards helping vulnerable individuals to improve their resilience to cyclones,” he says on LinkedIn.

“Importantly, many insurers have already proved willing to recognise improvements that lower risk to cyclones, and to reduce premiums accordingly.”

Suncorp Insurance CEO Gary Dransfield says the Household Resilience Program was developed using the company’s Protecting the North research with James Cook University’s Cyclone Testing Station.

“Effective investment in economic infrastructure that reduces the impact of natural disasters will help create regional jobs while building safer communities and reducing cost of living pressures through lower insurance premiums,” he said.

Mr Dransfield says the program complements Suncorp’s Cyclone Resilience Benefit that provides customers in the region with premium reductions of up to 20% for making their homes more cyclone resilient.

The extension of the program is part of a Queensland economic recovery strategy in response to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.