“I know that Australians have a big heart and this declaration will allow new funds, and qualifying existing funds established for the relief of people affected by the Sir Ivan Fires, to receive tax deductible donations,” Hon Kelly O’Dwyer MP said.
Mark Coulton MP said he was pleased that Dwyer had recognised and promptly addressed the significant impact of the disaster on those affected.
“Tax deductibility of donations will assist in raising funds to help people recover and get on with their lives,” Coulton said.
“The Sir Ivan fire was so intense and led to more than 55,000 hectares of country being burned out. I heard how firefighters and farmers fought hard to stop the inferno, many helping their neighbours - only to return to their own properties to find they had lost everything.
“The 12 house-community of Uarbry was almost wiped off the map with a number of homes reduced to ashes and the St. John the Evangelist Anglican Church, built in the 1920s, is now nothing more than a pile of rubble.”
Donations to the Australian disaster relief funds will be tax-deductible for a period of two years.
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The minister for revenue and financial services has declared the bushfires that burned through Warrumbungle Shire in New South Wales in February 2017, dubbed Sir Ivan Fire, a disaster - for the purposes of setting up Australian disaster relief funds.