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Department of Human Services

Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA)

Reconstruction of Essential Public Assets (REPA) in SA

The Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA) replaced the Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA) on 1 November 2018.

Under the DRFA, the Australian Government gives state governments funding to help cover the costs of:

  • some disaster relief
  • recovery assistance measures, including Reconstruction of Essential Public Assets (REPA).

REPA funding claims are prepared by the Department of Treasury and Finance (DTF).

After an eligible disaster, DTF may need state and local government organisations to collect and provide information about their essential public assets. DFT includes this in a state REPA funding claim. A REPA Strike Team will help organisations provide  information within the necessary timeframes.

If an event is eligible for Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements, local councils apply to Department of Treasury and Finance for disaster recovery funding through Local Government Disaster Recovery Assistance (PDF 1.43MB). This is in addition to contributing information to a state REPA claim.

Contact us

Email DHS.StateRecoveryOffice@sa.gov.au or DTFRecoverySA@sa.gov.au.

REPA Information Kit

This section has important REPA information for people in the field. It is a summary only and do not cover all topics in the DRFA.

For a thorough understanding of REPA, read the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements 2018.

Reading information offline

Choose from these options to read pages when you are offline:

  • Use your browser to ‘save page as’
  • print the page
  • download a PDF fact sheet to store or print.

Online information will be updated as needed, so check back regularly to ensure your files are up to date.

Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements Overview

Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements Overview

REPA Fact Sheet 1

Fact sheet 1: Disaster recovery funding arrangements - overview (PDF 156.9 KB)

The DRFA replaces the NDRRA

The Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA) are the Commonwealth-state cost-sharing arrangements for providing financial support for relief and recovery activities resulting from natural disasters and terrorist acts.

The DRFA replaced the Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA) on 1 November 2018. To be eligible for Commonwealth funding, state expenditure on events occurring after this date must comply with the new arrangements.

Why do we have the DRFA?

Natural disasters or terrorist acts can result in large-scale expenditure by state governments on relief and recovery payments and infrastructure reconstruction.

The DRFA supports states by:

  • partially reimbursing actual state expenditure on relief and recovery
  • paying some of the estimated reconstruction costs for essential public assets[1] such as roads, bridges and culverts.

How do we get DRFA assistance from the Commonwealth?

The South Australian Department of Treasury and Finance collects information from affected organisations and submits a detailed claim to the Commonwealth.

To lodge a claim, any expenditure must be by an 'eligible undertaking' on 'eligible measures' relating to an 'eligible disaster'.

What is an eligible undertaking?

An eligible undertaking is either a department or other agency of a state government, or a body established by or under state legislation for public purposes (for example, a local council).

In South Australia, ‘eligible undertakings’ that can contribute to a state claim include:

  • state agencies
  • local councils
  • some Aboriginal Land Holding Bodies
  • Outback Communities Authority

Energy, water and telecommunications retailers, and internet service providers, are not eligible undertakings.

For an organisation to be able to claim funding to reconstruct an essential public asset, it must be providing that asset to businesses or the community at no charge or a rate that is no more than 50% of the cost associated with providing the asset.

What is an eligible measure?

An ‘eligible measure’ is

  • a relief or recovery assistance measure specified in the DRFA, or
  • a cost to the state, such as a requirement to conduct an Independent Technical Review[2].

Eligible measures may include:

  • reconstruction of essential public assets (REPA)
  • personal hardship and distress assistance, including engaging a Community Recovery Officer to work with individuals and families receiving personal hardship and distress assistance
  • counter disaster operations
  • concessional loans or interest subsidies for small businesses and primary producers
  • transport freight subsidies for primary producers
  • loans and grants to voluntary non-profit organisations and needy individuals
  • community recovery funds
  • clean-up and recovery grants.

What is an eligible disaster?

According to the DRFA, an ‘eligible disaster’ is a natural disaster or terrorist act that:

  • requires a coordinated multi-agency response
  • exceeds the small disaster criterion for state expenditure, which is currently $240,000.

A natural disaster can be one or more of the following rapid onset events:

  • bushfire
  • earthquake
  • flood
  • storm
  • cyclone
  • storm surge
  • landslide
  • tsunami
  • meteorite strike
  • tornado.

A terrorist act is an event in Australia that the Minister for Home Affairs determines to be a terrorist act.

More information

Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements - Australian Government

Local Government Disaster Recovery Assistance Guidelines (PDF 1.4MB)

DFRA Principles for Commonwealth and State Assistance

DFRA Principles for Commonwealth and State Assistance

REPA Fact Sheet 2

Fact sheet 2: DRFA principles for Commonwealth and State Assistance (PDF 132.9 KB)

Commonwealth

The Commonwealth’s assistance supports states’ and territories’ relief and recovery measures. It complements other state-based strategies, such as insurance and natural disaster mitigation planning and implementation.

States

  • States will identify the type and level of assistance they need following a natural disaster or a terrorist act.
  • States should make any assistance they deem necessary available to the community, regardless of whether it is eligible for reimbursement.
  • States have a responsibility to put in place insurance arrangements that are cost-effective for both the state and Commonwealth.
  • When undertaking (or contributing to the cost of) eligible recovery measures, the state must act consistently with the following principles:
    • recovery is a shared responsibility for individuals, households, businesses, communities and governments, where access to funding or appropriate strategies of natural disaster mitigation are considered
    • state assistance needs to encourage businesses and communities to self-help, either by providing access to funding or appropriate natural disaster mitigation strategies
    • government assistance needs to be designed to achieve an efficient allocation of resources
    • the same assistance should be given to anyone affected by the same eligible disaster in the same way, within the limitations of these arrangements.

More information

Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements - Australian Government

Local Government Disaster Recovery Assistance Guidelines (PDF 1.4MB)

DRFA eligible state expenditure

DRFA eligible state expenditure

REPA Fact Sheet 3

Fact sheet 3: DRFA eligible state expenditure (PDF 124.9 KB)

What is eligible state expenditure?

Eligible state expenditure is total state expenditure by ‘eligible undertakings’ for ‘eligible measures’ in relation to ‘eligible disasters’ that have occurred within a financial year that a state is claiming Commonwealth reimbursement for under these arrangements (For definitions, see ‘DRFA overview’).

What can be included as expenditure under DRFA Category B for essential public assets?

  • Emergency works for essential public assets, including salaries and wages, and internal plant and equipment used for the emergency works
  • Immediate reconstruction works for essential public assets, including salaries, wages, day labour hire, and internal plant and equipment used for the immediate reconstruction works
  • Reconstructing essential public assets
  • Expenditure on eligible measures for non-monetary assistance, including goods, waived revenue, free or subsidised services
  • What is ineligible state expenditure?

  • Amounts that a state has recovered or may recover from any source
  • Amounts that a person is liable to reimburse to a state (including amounts attributable to GST)
  • Amounts directly or indirectly receivable from the Commonwealth under a joint Commonwealth-state financial arrangement, or some other form of specific purpose financial assistance to a state
  • Administrative expenditure a state would have been liable for, had the eligible disaster not occurred
  • Core disaster response activities that are the responsibility of, and are budgeted for, by a state
  • Amounts that have been transferred from a state to a department or other agency of the state government for possible expenditure on an eligible measure, but have not yet been spent by that department or agency
  • Profit margins to an eligible undertaking.

More information

Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements - Australian Government

Local Government Disaster Recovery Assistance Guidelines (PDF 1.4MB)

DFRA essential public assets

DFRA essential public assets

REPA Fact Sheet 4

Fact sheet 4: DRFA Essential Public Assets (PDF 151.3 KB)

What is an essential public asset?

Under the DRFA, an essential public asset is a transport or public infrastructure asset of an eligible undertaking (for example a state agency or local council) that the state considers (and the department agrees) is integral to the state’s infrastructure and normal functioning of a community.

Examples of essential public assets include:

  • roads
  • road infrastructure (including footpaths, bike lanes and pedestrian bridges)
  • bridges
  • tunnels
  • culverts
  • public hospitals
  • public schools
  • public housing
  • prisons/correctional facilities
  • police, fire and emergency services stations
  • levees
  • state/territory or local government offices
  • stormwater infrastructure.

Assets not considered to be essential public assets include:

  • sporting, recreational or community assets, for example playgrounds, ovals, showgrounds, skate parks and swimming pools). Funding may be available for these items under other categories of the DRFA, so please discuss with Department of Treasury and Finance (DTF)
  • religious buildings, for example churches, temples and mosques
  • privately-owned assets
  • memorials.

Why do I need to know about essential public assets?

If you work for a state government agency or a local government organisation, you may need to collect information and evidence for DTF to include in a state claim for financial assistance to reconstruct essential public assets.

If you work for a local government organisation, you can seek assistance to reconstruct essential public assets through the Local Government Disaster Recovery Arrangements. The definition of an essential public asset under these guidelines is the same as under the DRFA.

Funding to repair essential public assets

After a disaster, the Government of South Australia can apply to the Commonwealth Government for help to fund the reconstruction of essential public assets (REPA). You may need to read REPA Fact Sheet 5: Reconstruction of Essential Public Assets for more detail.

To work out if an asset is eligible for REPA funding under the DRFA, you need to be able to answer ‘yes’ to the following questions:

  • Does the asset meet the DRFA definition of transport or public infrastructure essential public assets?
  • Is the asset owned and maintained or operated and maintained by an eligible undertaking (e.g. a local government or state government agency)?
  • Is operating the asset provided free of charge to businesses or the community, or at a rate that is 50% or lower than the cost to provide the service?
  • Is the damaged asset necessary and integral to the normal functioning of the community?
  • Has the asset been directly damaged by an eligible disaster, and can this be demonstrated?
  • Does evidence clearly link the asset damage to the eligible disaster?
  • Does evidence demonstrate the exact location, nature and extent of event damage to the asset, i.e is there pre-disaster and post -disaster condition evidence, or has an inspection report been done?
  • If the asset meets all of the criteria above and is covered by insurance (e.g. public hospitals or schools), has a claim been sent to the insurer?
  • If a claim has been sent to an insurer, does it exclude works and costs that are covered by insurance?

If you not sure if an asset is eligible for funding under REPA, or if you think it should be, contact DTF, which can then check with the Commonwealth government. For any assets not listed here, the state must write to the Commonwealth for approval to treat the asset as an essential public asset under the DRFA.


More information

Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements - Australian Government

Local Government Disaster Recovery Assistance Guidelines (PDF 1.4MB)

Reconstruction of Essential Public Assets - REPA

Reconstruction of Essential Public Assets - REPA

REPA Fact Sheet 5

Fact sheet 5: Reconstruction of Essential Public Assets (REPA) (PDF 173.0 KB)

There are three priority-based categories of works for restoring or replacing essential public assets. (You may need to read Fact Sheet 4 - Essential Public Assets for more information.)

  1. emergency works (temporary)
  2. immediate reconstruction works (short-term)
  3. reconstructing essential public assets (longer-term).

Emergency works

  • Emergency works are urgent activities to temporarily restore an essential public asset so it can operate/be operated at an acceptable level to support immediate community recovery.
  • Emergency works must be done within three months of the date a state can access the asset.
  • DRFA reimbursement for emergency works is for actual cost.
  • Emergency works include, but works are not limited to, initial grading, pothole repairs, temporary gravel re-sheeting, replacing rock and traffic management.

Immediate reconstruction works

  • Immediate reconstruction works are short-term activities to fully reconstruct an essential public asset, following a state decision that no longer-term reconstruction works are required for this asset.
  • Immediate reconstruction works occur following an eligible disaster and must be done within three months from the date the state can access the essential public asset. Immediate works can be done at the same time as emergency works.
  • DRFA reimbursement for immediate reconstruction works is for actual cost.

Reconstructing essential public assets (longer term)

  • The reconstruction of an essential public asset (REPA) is permanently restoring the asset to pre-disaster function.
  • DRFA reimbursement is for estimated cost.
  • Estimated costs for REPA must be established within 12 months from the end of the financial year in which the eligible disaster occurred.

REPA lifecycle

REPA Lifecycle shown in a flowchart. For a text description, use the link following the flowchart.

REPA lifecycle in text

More information

Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements - Australian Government

Local Government Disaster Recovery Assistance Guidelines (PDF 1.4MB)

REPA Strike Team

REPA Strike Team

REPA Fact Sheet 6

Fact sheet 6: REPA Strike Team

What does the REPA Strike Team do?

The REPA Strike Team assists disaster-affected state and local government organisations to provide valid, accurate and timely information to enable the State to prepare a claim for DRFA funding for the reconstruction of essential public assets (REPA).

When there is a significant disaster with the potential for a REPA claim, the State Recovery Office will activate the Strike Team and deploy members to provide guidance to affected organisations.

The Strike Team will provide advice and information about the evidence that will need to be collected and stored. This service may be provided by phone, email or face-to-face.

If face-to-face visits are needed, they will commence as soon as possible after an event, depending on Strike Team availability, demand, regional access and post-event conditions.

What doesn’t the REPA Strike Team do?

The Strike Team does not provide:

  • disaster response or disaster relief
  • advice on funding which may be available under other parts of the DRFA or any other program
  • engineering, reconstruction or procurement advice.

Strike Team membership

The Strike Team is a pool of twelve experienced officers, drawn from one or more of the following organisations (home organisations) as required:

  • Department of Human Services (DHS) State Recovery Office – two officers
  • Department of Treasury and Finance (DTF) – two officers
  • Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure (DPTI) – four officers
  • Local Government Association of SA (LGA) – two officers
  • Department for Environment and Water (DEW) – two officers.

Strike Team members do annual training to maintain a detailed understanding of REPA, including requirements for collecting and providing evidence, and how to estimate costs for a REPA claim.

An activated Strike Team will be made up of different members of the pool, depending on the needs of the affected organisations at the time. Members may be deployed full- or part-time.

Strike Team activation

When a significant disaster causes damage which may be eligible for a REPA claim, the State Recovery Office will activate the REPA Strike Team to provide advice and information to affected organisations, including what evidence to collect and store.

A member of the REPA Strike Team will contact each affected state and local government organisation to offer information and advice as soon as possible.

Strike Team governance

The Director of the State Recovery Office in the Department of Human Services (DHS) in South Australia activates, deploys, directs and manages the Strike Team.

A memorandum of administrative arrangement (MoAA) between DHS and each home organisation of the strike team members details the governance arrangements.

Requesting the Strike Team

State and local government organisations that are not contacted by the REPA Strike Team after a disaster can contact the State Recovery Office.

Phone 1800 302 787
Email dhs.staterecoveryoffice@sa.gov.au

More information

Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements - Australian Government

Local Government Disaster Recovery Assistance Guidelines (PDF 1.4MB)

DRFA Evidence of a Pre-Disaster Condition

DRFA Evidence of a Pre-Disaster Condition

REPA Fact Sheet 7

Fact sheet 7: Evidence of Pre-Disaster Condition (PDF 145.9 KB)

When contributing information for a state claim for reconstructing essential public assets, state and local government organisations need to provide evidence to show the location, nature and pre-disaster condition of the essential public asset.

Pre-disaster evidence must be the latest available evidence within the specified age limits at the time of the eligible disaster.

Some state and local government organisations may not have evidence available within the specified time limits. In this case, option e) inspection reports can be used.

Acceptable types of evidence are:

a) Geospatial data, including satellite images

This can be useful to determine the overall pre-disaster condition of large assets like jetties and seawalls.

b) Visual data, including photographs or video footage

Organisations are encouraged to develop databases of asset photographs and/or videos to provide a solid record of pre-event asset condition. For efficient use and cataloguing, captured data should include EXIF format metadata, including GPS coordinates and time/date.

c) Maintenance records

Maintenance records complement asset registers help to support claim information. They can include:

  • records of capital works/maintenance activities recorded by GPS coordinates and road chainage
  • width of pavement works (where relevant)
  • dates of works and activities.

d) Asset registers

Asset registers can provide pre-disaster condition evidence when there is a total asset loss and it is difficult to show other types of evidence. Organisations should develop and maintain accurate information about essential public assets and support this information with maintenance records.

Asset registers should include:

  • geospatial digital road data (centrelines)
  • the functional classification of the asset
  • road surface type
  • typical cross section widths
  • any other relevant public infrastructure.

e) Inspection reports or certification to confirm the eligible disaster caused the damage

A suitably qualified professional with an appropriate level of expertise and experience must do (or verify) the inspection report at the time of the damage assessment.

Post-disaster inspection reports will often be the main evidence used to establish both the event-related damage and pre-disaster condition. Where the pre-disaster condition of an asset is unclear, additional supporting pre-disaster evidence should be provided.

Acceptable age of evidence

For data types a), b), c) and d) to be acceptable, they must be the latest available data and no older than two (2) years before the eligible disaster.

For local government essential public assets, the data can be no older than four (4) years before the eligible disaster.

If evidence is not available within the specified time limits, state and local government organisations may use option e) inspection reports.

More information

Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements - Australian Government

Local Government Disaster Recovery Assistance Guidelines (PDF 1.4MB)

DFRA Photo Evidence

DFRA Photo Evidence

REPA Fact Sheet 8

Fact sheet 8: DRFA Photo Evidence (PDF 847.7 KB)

Photo evidence for each damaged asset can prove:

  • location of the damage
  • the damage was caused by the event
  • scope and scale of the damage
  • details of the damage.

Photos do not prove a link to the event on their own – they complement other reporting formats to determine pre-disaster condition. An organisation’s asset management system is the main tool used to assess pre-disaster condition.

Collecting and providing photos

Take photos as quickly as possible after an event – the more time that passes between the event and taking photos, the harder it is to show that the event caused the damage.

As soon as you can, choose your best photos and make sure you give them clear file names and dates.

File the images somewhere easily accessible so you can provide them to the Department of Treasury and Finance, State auditors and Commonwealth government auditors for verification when needed.

Format and file information

  • High-resolution, colour JPEGs
  • Good quality, free of glare or dark/patterned shadows, and clearly showing damage to the asset
  • Includes EXIF metadata in photo file, for example, GPS coordinates and time/date taken.

GPS coordinates linked to photo evidence - example diagram

 Topographic map of an area marked to show areas of damage and referring to photo evidence.

Taking good photos of damaged assets

Preparation and organisation

  • Use a GPS-enabled camera to capture the location of the asset’s damage
  • Check that the GPS is on and reporting correct location
  • Make sure the date and time are set correctly
  • Check that the resolution is set to medium-to-high for quality photos
  • Keep your charger, back-up batteries and memory cards handy
  • Label, save and manage your photos well to link them to the specific asset being claimed
    • Save photos in folders by asset using descriptive file names, for example asset name and chainage
    • Use clear file references when you return to the office and back up your files. This will help when delivering works and during the close-out phase.

Photos of roads

  • Does the photo show the damage from the event? If not, can you see the indicators of damage? Point it out, you have to show the damage to claim it The number of photos needed varies. You need some showing the scale of the damage, some showing the detail (extent/length) of the damage and some looking along the road (or other asset) to show the context
  • Sequential image numbers along chainages help in telling the overall story and enable the order of images to be identified
  • Take photos at set intervals along the damaged asset. This is important to show consistent damage and consistent treatment requirements or variances in damage and variations in treatments
  • Early morning and late afternoon provide optimum contrast to capture damage in road surfaces but avoid glare and dark shadows
  • Get down low to demonstrate distinctive damage features (such as pavement deformation) and support proposed treatments
  • Mark the damage where it is hard to see (for example, use spray paint)
  • Use a straight edge and measure to demonstrate damage. Take a photo of the full straight edge
  • Use a ruler or tape measure to demonstrate depth/width/distance. For large distances/widths, consider using a vehicle, person or other scalable landmark.

How to do it

Use a straight edge

Asphalt road extends from the viewer's feet almost to the horizon. A straight rod has been laid across the road to show the depth of the ruts in the road.
Demonstrates extent of damage into distance and good use of straight edge.
Asphalt road extends from the viewer's feet directly to the horizon. The asphalt marked with spray paint.
Marking out shows damage clearly and planned works.
Dirt road extends from the viewer's feet directly to the horizon. The road edges are cracked and broken.
Shows damage clearly and extends into distance.
Close-up of asphalt road. A straight rod has been put down to show the depth of the ruts in the road.
Use of straight edge to show damage close up.

Showing scope

Asphalt road extends from the viewer's feet directly to the horizon. The asphalt is cracked and rutted.
Clearly shows damage and that it extends into distance.
Dirt road extends from the viewer's feet directly to the horizon. The road surface is deeply rutted.
Shows consistent damage into distance.

Photos of culverts, crossings, flood ways and table drains

  • Does the photo show the damage from the event? If not, can you see the indicators of damage? Point it out, you have to show the damage to claim it
  • Take close-up photos of each damaged component to demonstrate all disaster-related damage and support each proposed treatment, for example damaged head wall, wash out, rock protection, apron
  • Take some distant photos showing the damage within the context of the site or the road – include identifying landmarks to make identification easier
  • Take photos along the length of affected drain as well as close-ups of each site of silt build-up
  • If overgrown, take more close-ups to show consistent build-up of silt. Consider providing flood mapping if appropriate.

How to do it

Crossings and flood ways

Interior of storm water pipe.
Inside pipe work clearly showing damage
A concrete river ford shown side-on. One end of the ford has collapsed into the river.
Perspective of range of damage.
River crossing shown side-on. The road surface has been undercut.
Provides close up of extent of damage.
A dirt road river crossing.
Provides good overview of the crossing and approaches, including construction type..
A damaged dirt road river crossing.
Provides good overview showing scouring.
A concrete river ford. Most of the ford has collapsed into the river.
Shows damage and approach.
A river ford with a gaping crack down one side. A car gives a size context.
Shows damage and scope clearly.
Close-up of the openings of two storm water pipes.
Shows damage to component parts
Dirt road next to a car. The road edge guide post has sunk almost completely into the ground.
Sink holes/blowholes.
Close-up of a road edge guide post that has sunk into the ground.
Use of post to demonstrate depth of subsidence.
Close-up of measuring tape laid across a large gap in concrete..
Use of tape to show damage to pipe.

Landslips

A fence provides a straight edge against which the extent of the landslip can be seen.
Landslips show the context of slip in relation to the asset.
Close-up. A fence provides a straight edge against which the extent of the landslip can be seen.
Landslips show the context of slip in relation to the asset.
A road verge provides a straight edge against which the extent of the landslip can be seen.
Landslips show the context of slip in relation to the asset.
A flooded roadway. A road sign is included to show the height of the water.
Photos like this provide good supporting evidence.
A river ford shown side-on. Half the road surface over the ford is missing.
Photos like this provide good supporting evidence.

Examples of bad photos

How not to do it

How not to do it

A road extends from the viewer's feet to the horizon. Deep shadows from trees obscure the road surface.
Cannot make out damage due to shadow
Asphalt road extends from the viewer's feet and curves to the right. There is no obvious damage.
Cannot see any significant damage directly related to the event.
Close-up shot of an asphalt surface. One spot is marked with paint.
Do not - cannot see any significant damage directly related to the event, nor can you get any perspective of the scale of defects or the location.
Asphalt road extends from the viewer's feet and extends directly away. In the middle distance is a floodway. There is some water over the road at the floodway.
Cannot see the damage to this floodway.
Close-up of earth and small plants. No obvious damage.
Difficult to make anything out.
Close-up of earth and small plants. There are some puddles, but no obvious damage.
Difficult to make anything out.
Photo taken through a car windscreen. An asphalt road extends directly to the horizon. Shadows from trees obscure the road surface.
It is not possible to see clear damage.
A dirt road. Most detail is gone because the photo is over-exposed.
Unable to see damage due to glare.

More information

Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements - Australian Government

Local Government Disaster Recovery Assistance Guidelines (PDF 1.4MB)

DFRA Record Keeping

DFRA Record Keeping

REPA Fact Sheet 9

Fact sheet 9: DRFA record keeping (PDF 124.4 KB)

What records do we need to keep?

State and local government organisations must keep a complete audit trail of physical and/or electronic records that show a direct relationship between the eligible disaster, the eligible measure, the work invoiced and the expenditure claimed.

  • Visual and geospatial data and information may include (but is not limited to) satellite images, Google earth images, photographs, video footage.
  • In the case of emergency works and immediate reconstruction works, documentation may include (but is not limited to) asset damage and inspection reports.
  • Administrative data and documentation may include (but is not limited to) contract/work orders, timesheets, news articles, e-mail correspondence, funding approval letters, minutes of meetings.
  • Financial data and documentation may include (but is not limited to) tax and/or financial statements, cost-benefit analyses, transaction listings used to reconcile invoices, annual reports, proposals, invoices and payments.
  • Grant data and documentation may include (but is not limited to) grant applications and grant guidelines.

How long do we have to keep records?

Audit trails must be kept for seven years from the end of each financial year in which state expenditure is claimed by the state. This must include written records that correctly record and explain what expenditure that the state claimed for all eligible measures.

How do records need to be stored?

The records must be organised and stored so that they can be easily accessed when needed. When the Commonwealth government requests records, the state must make them available within one month.

More information

Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements - Australian Government

Local Government Disaster Recovery Assistance Guidelines (PDF 1.4MB)

DFRA Independent Technical Review of a Project

DFRA Independent Technical Review of a Project

REPA Fact Sheet 10

Fact sheet 10: DRFA Independent Technical Review of a Project (PDF 127.2 KB)

States may need to do an Independent Technical Review to provide the Commonwealth with increased oversight and assurance for claims made under these arrangements for reconstructing essential public assets.

Before submitting estimated reconstruction costs for a project to the Commonwealth, the state must assess whether an Independent Technical Review is needed, under applications 1, 2 and 3 below.

An Independent Technical Review must be done:

  1. if the estimated reconstruction cost for the project is $25 million or more
  2. when there is a variance in estimated costs between  the original reconstruction project and a preferred alternative reconstruction project solution that is:
  • more than 50 per cent lower than the estimated reconstruction cost of the original project, and
  • valued between $5 million and $25 million.
  1. where ‘special circumstances’ (see below) arise and result in an estimated reconstruction cost for the project that is:
    • greater than 15 per cent of the estimated reconstruction cost of the original project, and
    • greater than $1 million.
  2. if the Commonwealth, on receiving the estimated reconstruction cost for a project from the state within its financial year claim, elects to have the project reviewed.

The costs of procuring an independent technical review under applications 1, 2 and 3 must be covered by the state, though costs can be claimed as an eligible measure under these arrangements.

What are ‘special circumstances’?

  • Geotechnical conditions that could not reasonably have been foreseen or investigated in the design period
  • Previously unidentified indigenous and cultural heritage discoveries
  • Previously unidentified heritage discoveries
  • Delays caused by subsequent eligible disasters
  • Environmental conditions that could not have reasonably been foreseen (for example, threatened species discovery)
  • Safety threats that could not reasonably have been foreseen (for example, asbestos discovery), or
  • Critical reduction in water availability that could not reasonably have been foreseen or investigated in the design period.

What do we need to do to achieve an Independent Technical Review?

Please seek the advice of the Department of Treasury and Finance and see Schedule B of the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements.

More information

Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements - Australian Government

Local Government Disaster Recovery Assistance Guidelines (PDF 1.4MB)

DRFA Local Government Disaster Recovery Assistance - LGDRA

DRFA Local Government Disaster Recovery Assistance - LGDRA

REPA Fact Sheet 11

Fact sheet 11: Local Government Disaster Recovery Assistance (LGDRA) (PDF 139.2 KB)

What is an eligible natural disaster?

A natural disaster is one, or a combination of, the following rapid onset events:

  • bushfire
  • storm surge
  • earthquake
  • landslide
  • flood
  • cyclone
  • storm
  • tsunami
  • meteorite strike
  • tornado.

As a general rule, if the event is considered to be eligible for Commonwealth Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA) then it will be an eligible event under the LGDRA.

Key criteria for eligibility under the DRFA are that the event will require a multi-agency response and is likely to incur eligible expenditure greater than $240,000.

Who determines natural disaster eligibility?

The Department of Treasury and Finance will determine the eligibility of an event for state support, based on preliminary damage assessments undertaken by both local and state government agencies.

Who should local government organisations contact when they have been affected by a natural disaster?

Initially, local government organisations should notify the Director, State Recovery Office of damage caused by a natural disaster. This notification should include sufficient information to provide an early indication of the extent of damage and the likely recovery measures required.

What type of recovery measures are eligible for state support?

State support is provided for counter disaster activities, repairs to essential public assets and for community recovery activities.

What type of assets are eligible for state support?

Assets that are essential for providing health, education, justice welfare, and transport services are generally eligible for assistance. Where it is cost effective to do so, councils are expected to maintain insurance for essential public assets.

Eligible assets that are not readily insurable are primarily related to transport infrastructure, such as roads, and associated assets, such as drainage systems, signage, and pedestrian and bike lanes.

Examples of ineligible assets may include:

  • sporting and community facilities, religious establishments and memorials, piers and wave-energy-dissipation structures (breakwaters and sea walls)
  • environmental assets, such as river banks, coastal dune systems (even if they are close to eligible assets), some fire tracks and walking trails.

However, if any damaged public asset is essential to transport or the community, check its eligibility with the Department of Treasury and Finance or the State Recovery Office.

What evidence do we submit for our initial estimate?

The initial estimate (Form one) is used to determine the scope of the damage and provide an opportunity to determine the eligibility of recovery measures. The initial estimate needs to record the asset name, location, description and details of damage.

Take photos of the damage to support the assessment, before emergency and immediate repairs start.

It is important to be able to demonstrate the pre-disaster condition of the asset to prove that the event caused the damage being claimed. This can be done by keeping maintenance/asset registers and/or by providing previous photographic records (Google Maps can often help with this).

A suitably qualified professional needs to estimate the cost of clean-up and repair, including an allowance for industry accepted escalation and contingency. It is important to collect evidence that supports the damage assessment as soon as possible following an event.

For counter disaster operations, details of the costs, location, activity and purpose of the expenditure needs to be provided (for example, material and labour associated with protecting residences in suburb X from rising floodwater by raising the height of a river levee).

Costs for community development projects should not be included at this stage, as this activity will need to be coordinated through the State Recovery Office.

What costs can we include in the claim?

Eligible costs are extraordinary costs incurred to provide eligible recovery measures.

These can include:

  • contractor costs (including externally provided project management services)
  • external equipment hire charges
  • employee travel allowances and overtime
  • operating and additional maintenance costs for council-owned equipment
  • backfilling employees undertaking eligible measures.

Costs not included are those that a council would have incurred in the absence of an eligible event. These include:

  • normal salaries and wages (unless specifically approved by the Minister)
  • overhead charges
  • internal equipment hire rates
  • equipment purchases
  • costs that are reimbursable from other external funding sources
  • consequential losses subsequent to the actual event (fees and charges, and so forth).

Under what circumstances can we get additional support?

Additional support can be provided to support improvements to an asset’s resilience (known as betterment,) provided it is cost beneficial to do so. This will only be considered if the asset has a history of damage from past events.

The Minister can also approve additional support for eligible measures if the council can demonstrate that it does not have the financial capacity to meet its share of the costs.

Is there a time limit for lodging our claim?

The claim (Form 2) must be lodged within 12 months following the end of the financial year of the eligible event. Requests for time extensions need to be made well in advance and include justification for the cause of the delay, for example, unable to access the site for an extended period. All reconstruction works must be completed within the allowable time period (two years from the end of the financial year in which the natural disaster occurred), unless a time extension has been approved by the Minister.

Can we submit more than one claim for a natural disaster event?

Yes, councils can submit more than one claim for an event within the allowable time limit. If the subsequent claim is to update the costs of projects included in an earlier claim, you need to provide sufficient justification, e.g. the preferred tenderer did not proceed, or unforeseeable obstacles were encountered in the repair.

What information should we provide with a claim for payment?

Sufficient information should be provided to link the payment to the proposed works identified in the approved claim (Form 2). This includes purchase orders, invoices (clearly detailing the works undertaken), ledger details timesheets etc.

Should the claim include GST?

The subsidy is not considered to be a supply for GST purposes and should be GST exclusive.

More information

Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements - Australian Government

Local Government Disaster Recovery Assistance Guidelines (PDF 1.4MB)

More information

Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements - Australian Government

Local Government Disaster Recovery Assistance Guidelines (PDF 1.4MB)

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Provided by:
SA Department for Human Services
URL:
https://dhs.sa.gov.au/services/disaster-recovery/disaster-recovery-funding-arrangements-drfa
Last Updated:
05 Jul 2018
Printed on:
18 Oct 2019
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