MORE FLOOD MONEY FOR RICHMOND RIVER COUNTY COUNCIL
The Minister for Finance and Services, Greg Pearce and the Member for Lismore, Thomas George today announced a series of payments totalling $763,567 to Richmond River County Council towards the cost of cleanups and repairs to public infrastructure as a result of storms and floods.
The storms occurred over the past three years and council recently lodged claims for restoration work that has progressively been completed to date.
The largest payment of $600,000 will help meet the cost of reconstructing a section of the city’s levee, which sustained damage during floods in May 2009.
Minister Pearce said the latest progress payment in relation to the levee follow Council’s completion of the third stage of the restoration project.
“The Government offered approximately $2.12 million to cover the full list of eligible works and further payments will be made once Council completes the remaining stages,” he said.
A second cheque for $130,095 is the initial progress payment to meet the cost of repairs to the South Lismore Drain that carries floodwaters away from the industrial estate and airport after it was damaged in January last year.
A third cheque for $33,472 has also been sent to Council to meet the full cost of emergency works as a result of a flood early this year.
The Member for Lismore, Thomas George welcomed the Government’s ongoing financial commitment, which ensured the levee and other assets would be fully restored.
“These are important pieces of public infrastructure that gives protection to Lismore’s city centre and adjacent areas,” he said.
“The restoration of the levee, in particular, has been a very complex exercise, requiring extensive survey and geotechnical investigations to address the instability of river bank on which the levee has to be built.
“Adding to the challenge of getting on with the repairs has been the number of severe storms and flooding that have interrupted the works schedule.
“Once again I thank the local office of NSW Public Works for providing technical and project management support to Council and for assisting in securing the natural disaster grants,” Mr George said.
The NSW Public Works arm of the Department of Finance and Services administers the local government assets component of joint Commonwealth and NSW natural disaster relief arrangements.
Under an agreement with the Commonwealth, the NSW Government pays the first $119.7 million of all natural disaster costs in each year. The Commonwealth matches NSW expenditure for costs between $119.7 million and $209.5 million and beyond that pays for three-quarters of all costs.