Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA) - For events post 1 November 2018

For information regarding the June 2021 Storm and Flood event (AGRN 969), please read the frequently asked questions section

From 1 December 2019, responsibility for Victoria’s administration of the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA) moved from the Department of Treasury and Finance to Emergency Management Victoria, Department of Justice and Community Safety (Administering Authority). The team can be contacted on ndfa@emv.vic.gov.au (External link) for further information.

The DRFA provides financial assistance to States, to support certain relief and recovery efforts following an eligible disaster.

A copy of the Commonwealth’s DRFA can be found on the Disaster Assist website (External link), this is to be read in conjunction with Victoria’s documents and processes. Victoria has developed documents that align to the DRFA guidelines issued by the Commonwealth Government. The Victorian documents outline the process, documentation requirements, reference tools, forms and templates to be used to ensure the provision of appropriate information to prepare and assess claims under the DRFA.

It is the responsibility of the Delivery Agency (local councils and Catchment Management Authorities) to understand and comply with the DRFA guidelines to ensure all the required information is provided in the correct format, with structured references and within the required time frames, in order to submit a fully compliant claim.

The documents, forms and templates on the page are updated on a regular basis. Please ensure you are using the latest version of the documents before submitting a claim. 

Any queries about the DRFA should be directed to the Assigned Assessor in the first instance or to the Administering Authority at EMV at ndfa@emv.vic.gov.au (External link).

Overview of the claims process

View the full process map for Natural Disaster Financial Assistance Claims

View the DRFA Claims Journey Map

Step 1: A disaster occurs

Step 2: If the small disaster criterion is met, confirmation of the DRFA event will be provided

  • The Delivery Agency will receive a letter advising of the Australian Government Reference Number (AGRN) for the disaster and terms of funding support to be provided.
  • An assessor will be assigned to the Delivery Agency. Early estimates are captured in the Automated Claims Management System (ACMS) (External link).

Step 3: Outline of the information required to complete a fully compliant DRFA claim including the Guidelines and Fact Sheets

  • The Delivery Agency is required to submit claims in accordance with the guidelines and timelines. 
  • The Delivery Agency is required to work with the Assessing Authority throughout the claims journey.

Step 4: How a fully compliant DRFA claim is finalised

  • The Assessing Authority are to review the claim and make a recommendation to the Administering Authority. 
  • The Delivery Agency will receive a letter advising of the claim outcome.

 

Step 1: A disaster occurs

The Delivery Agency is required to fill out and lodge a ‘Notification of an event’ form within five (5) working days following the disaster. The Delivery Agency is to email the completed ‘Notification of an event’ form to the Administering Authoring (NDFA team) at ndfa@emv.vic.gov.au (External link).

Notification of Event Form 
 

Step 2: If the small disaster criterion is met, confirmation of the DRFA event will be provided

  • The Delivery Agency will receive a letter advising of the Australian Government Reference Number (AGRN) for the disaster and terms of funding support to be provided. 

  • An Assessor will be assigned to the Delivery Agency. Early estimates are captured in the Automated Claims Management System (ACMS).

The Administering Authority (NDFA team) will notify the Commonwealth of the eligible disaster. The Commonwealth will approve the eligible disaster and assign an Australian Government Reference Number (AGRN) for the event. The eligible disaster is entered on the Automated Claims Management System (ACMS) (External link) by the Administering Authority.

The Assessing Authority is notified of the disaster and impacted Delivery Agencies and will make contact with the impacted Delivery Agencies.

The Delivery Agencies will be notified via a letter to the CEO providing the established AGRN and next steps. 

The Delivery Agency captures early estimates of the value of claims to be submitted for the event.

Notified natural disasters and key allowable time limits including dates

The frequently updated document presents details of recent disasters and provides Delivery Agencies with the allowable time limits to complete works/activities, incur expenditure and lodgment timeframes for claims and/or certified reconstruction estimates packages. 

Any costs incurred after these deadlines will be deemed ineligible for reimbursement. Please note that these timelines allow the Victorian Government to comply with Commonwealth Government timelines for acquittal and audit requirements.

DRFA Allowable time period 

 

Step 3: Outline of the information required to complete a fully compliant DRFA claim including the Guidelines and Fact Sheets

  • The Delivery Agency is required to submit claims in accordance with the guidelines and timelines.

  • The Delivery Agency is required to work with the Assessing Authority throughout the claims journey.

As each DRFA claim will be unique in claim type, process and specific requirements, a general overview of the whole process is provided. 

The Delivery Agency will need to work with their assigned Assessor to establish the claim type, process to follow and documentation required to submit a fully compliant claim.

The ACMS (External link) is a system for Delivery Agencies to lodge claims and submit estimates for natural disaster financial assistance. ShareFile (External link) is a platform where larger documents can be uploaded. 

Any queries about the DRFA should be directed to the assigned Assessor in the first instance or to the Administering Authority at EMV at ndfa@emv.vic.gov.au (External link).

The four categories of assistance measures under the DRFA are:

 

Category A: Emergency assistance to individuals

Assistance to alleviate personal hardship or distress arising as a direct result of a disaster.

This includes:

  • Early relief and recovery activities including the establishment and operation of a Municipal Emergency Coordination Centre, and/or a Relief and Recovery Centre.
  • Counter disaster operations undertaken to provide direct assistance to individuals, immediately before, during and in the immediate aftermath of a disaster, for example, sandbagging or the establishment of bushfire control lines. 
  • Personal hardship assistance programs administered by the Department of Health and Human Services

Fact Sheet 4 and Guideline 4 provide an outline of the eligibility framework and claims process when seeking reimbursement associated with the provision of relief and recovery activities for impacted Delivery Agencies within Victoria. They also include information on: 

  • eligible and ineligible costs that can be claimed under relief and recovery activities or counter disaster operations
  • supporting documentation required for a fully compliant claim

Fact Sheet 4

Guideline 4

Forms

Delivery Agencies are required to complete the relevant following claim forms:

  • A claim lodgment declaration form is to be completed and submitted for completed claims relating to:
    • Early Relief and Recovery expenditure; and
    • Counter Disaster Operations

A PDF of V form-D-DEC (2) is to be signed the by the Chief Executive Officer from the Delivery Agency and submitted with required supporting documentation and lodged in the ACMS or Sharefile, as per Fact Sheet 4.

Drop down boxes have been included in each of the relevant claim forms for eligible activities. 

Completed forms and supporting documentation to be lodged as per Fact Sheet 4.

If Delivery Agencies employ additional positions in response to an event and wish to claim salary costs through the DRFA, the below request form should be completed and submitted with the position description to the Assessing Authority.

Request - Additional Position – Victorian DRFA

If Delivery Agencies need to make amendments to a position that has already been agreed under the DRFA, the below variation request form should be completed and submitted with the position description to the Assessing Authority.

Variation Request – Additional Position – Victorian DRFA 

 

 

Category B:  Repair of damaged essential public assets

Category B assistance can be divided into four broad areas of assistance designed to support the community to recover from an eligible disaster. 

These include:

  1. Counter Disaster Operations for the protection of the general public
  2. Emergency Works to urgently restore an essential public asset to an acceptable level of service to support the local community.
  3. Immediate Reconstruction Works
  4. Reconstruction Works including approval of a Certified Estimate Certified

Subject to the severity or significance of a disaster, concessional loans may also be provided to assist impacted small businesses, primary producers and non-profit organisations.

Claims and Eligibility for essential public assets  

Fact Sheet 1 and Guideline 1 provide information on: 

  • emergency works for essential public assets    
  • immediate reconstruction works for essential public assets
  • essential public asset reconstruction works

The Fact Sheet and Guideline provide an outline of the eligibility framework and the claims process for impacted Delivery Agencies within Victoria, in seeking reimbursement associated with the reconstruction of essential public assets under Category B. 

The Delivery Agency is required to lodge a certified estimate for the essential public asset reconstruction works for approval before commencing works and making a claim. 

Fact Sheet 1 

Guideline 1 

Forms

Delivery Agencies are required to complete the relevant following claim forms:

  • A claim lodgement declaration form is to be completed and lodged with completed claims relating to:
    • Emergency works 
    • Immediate Reconstruction works 
    • Essential Public Asset Reconstruction works

A PDF of the completed V Form D DEC claim form is to be signed by Chief Executive Officer responsible officer from the Delivery Agency. The completed claim form and all relevant supporting documentation is to be lodged in the ACMS as per Fact Sheet 1.

Delivery Agencies are to update the Assessing Authority on a quarterly basis on the progress of works for each asset following the approval of a certified estimate for essential public asset reconstruction works.

QTR essential public asset reconstruction works quaterly report V Form-D-QTR

Completed forms are required to be lodged as per Fact Sheet 1

If Delivery Agencies employ additional positions in response to an event and wish to claim salary costs through the DRFA, the request form  below should be completed and submitted with the position description to the Assessing Authority.

Request - Additional Position – Victorian DRFA

If Delivery Agencies need to make amendments to a position that has already been agreed under the DRFA, the variation request form below should be completed and submitted with the position description to the Assessing Authority.Variation Request – Additional Position – Victorian DRFA 

If Delivery Agencies need to request an extension of time to the allowable time limit for emergency and immediate reconstruction works under the DRFA, the request form below should be completed and submitted to the Assessing Authority, two weeks prior to the allowable time period ending. Refer to pages 29 and 30 of Guideline 1 for further information.Request extension to the Allowable Time Limit - Emergency and Immediate works

Example of completed forms

Essential Public Asset Restoration Works Certified Estimate Example

Declaration Form (V Form D-DEC) and Claim Form (V Form B-RW)

Signed CEO D-Dec form (PDF 778KB) (External link)

Signed Vicroads D-DEC and C-RW Forms (XLSX 214KB) (External link)

 

 

Damage assessment for essential public assets 

Fact Sheet 2 and Guideline 2 provide information on the collection and assessment of evidence (in particular requirements for photo evidence) to demonstrate post-disaster and pre-disaster asset condition for compliance under the DRFA. 

Adherence to this guideline will assist in the compilation, review and approval process for submissions in relation to:

  • Emergency works for essential public assets
  • Immediate reconstruction works for essential public assets
  • Essential public asset reconstruction with a certified estimate.  
  • Collection of evidence of damage following an eligible disaster event 
  • Timeframes that apply to the presentation of suitable evidence under the DRFA

Fact Sheet 2 

Guideline 2 

Forms

Delivery Agencies are required to complete the relevant following claim forms:

The Delivery Agency are to complete the report and the Assessor is to provide sign off. Completed report to be submitted via Sharefile.

 

Certified Estimates including cost estimation for essential public assets

If a certified estimate is required, the Delivery Agency enters the required supporting documentation for a certified estimate on the ACMS. Essential Public Assets Reconstruction works are not to commence until the Certified Estimate has been endorsed by the Administering Agency. 

This guideline documents the process adopted by Victoria for developing an estimated reconstruction cost following an eligible disaster and is consistent with the requirements of the DRFA published by the Commonwealth Government

Fact Sheet 3 

Guideline 3 

Forms

Delivery Agencies are required to complete the relevant following claim forms:

Example of a Cost Estimation Tool (Ballan Egerton Road)
Cost Estimation - Moorabool - Ballan Egerton Rd RDS00319 (XLSM 4.2MB) (External link)

Example of Pre-condition and Damage by Essential Public Asset (Ballan Egerton Road)
Pre-condition Asset Report - Moorabool - Ballan Egerton (ZIP 2.4MB) (External link) 

Example of Supporting documentation
Cover letter (PDF 605KB)  (External link)

Job sheet (XLXS 18KB)  (External link)

 

 

 

Category C: Clean Up and Restoration Grants and/or Community Recovery Packages

Assistance for severely affected communities, regions or sectors can include clean-up and restoration grants for small businesses, primary producers and non-profit organisations and/or the establishment of a Community Recovery Fund. Category C assistance is only made available when the impact of a disaster is severe or significant, following approval from the Prime Minister. It is intended to be in addition to assistance available under Categories A and B and is usually considered once the impacts of the disaster on affected communities have been assessed.

For more information see the Commonwealth’s Disaster Assist website (External link).

 

Category D: Exceptional Circumstances

Exceptional circumstances assistance beyond Categories A, B and C. Category D assistance is generally considered once the impact of the disaster has been assessed and specific recovery gaps identified. Approval is required by the Prime Minister

For more information see the Commonwealth’s Disaster Assist website (External link).

 

Step 4: How a fully compliant DRFA claim is finalised

  • The assigned Assessor to review the claim and make a recommendation to the Administering Authority. 

  • The Delivery Agency will receive a letter advising of claim outcome.

Claims are to be lodged on the ACMS for eligible expenditure within designated timeframes using the correct claim form and with the supporting documents as outlined in step 3 above. A claim is not considered as being lodged unless it is fully compliant with the DRFA guidelines. 

Fully compliant claims are required to be lodged by 31 July for expenditure incurred during the previous financial year.

Claims are assessed in accordance with the DRFA guidelines, by the relevant Assessor. Assessment of the claim includes a review of supporting documentation and site inspections undertaken.  A well-structured fully compliant claim enables assessments to be undertaken in a timely manner.

Read more about the validation process used by the Assessing Authority and the DRFA assurance framework.

Once a claim has been assessed by an Assessor, a recommendation is then made to the Administering Authority.

The Administering Authority will undertake an assurance check of the claim. During this stage the Administering Authority will work with the Assessing Authority and the Delivery Agency as required. 

Once a claim has been assessed as fully compliant, the Administering Agency will process the recommended claim amount reimbursement.

The Delivery Agency will receive a letter from the Administering Authority advising of the claim outcome.

The Victorian Auditor General’s Office (VAGO) and the Commonwealth appointed auditors will undertake their respective audits and select samples of claims lodged during the financial year. 

When requested by either VAGO or the Commonwealth appointed auditor, the Delivery Agency will need to provide all requested information to the Administrative Authority within 14 days.