FEDERAL Member for Leichhardt Warren Entsch has welcomed today’s Commonwealth-State joint-funding announcement of more than $168,000 towards projects that will help Douglas Shire build resilience to natural disasters.
Projects are jointly supported with Commonwealth and Queensland State Government funding as part of the $52.2 million national partnership agreement on natural disaster resilience.
Mr Entsch said the funding had been committed in Leichhardt to help locals better prepare and respond to natural disasters, and to lessen their impact.
“All too often we hear about flooding in parts of Douglas Shire which results from very heavy rainfall or cyclonic events,” he said. “Damage to roads, drainage and sewerage systems can cost local councils a lot of money in repairs, and residents bear the brunt of flood damage to homes, businesses and vehicles.
“There’s also the impact of isolation on residents and businesses when they’re shut off from road access for periods of time, and the implications of that for getting to and from work or school, accessing supplies or medical attention.”
The State-Commonwealth funding will support two projects in the Mossman area, both of which will create local jobs:
– Douglas Shire Council will receive $120,000 towards a $200,000 project to undertake detailed modelling of flooding and mitigation measures for a levee bank near Marrs Creek, Johnson Road.
– Council will also receive $48,000 towards a $80,000 project to install automated 'road closed' warning signs with flashing lights at each end of Anich's Bridge, which is located on Finlayvale Road.
“This project will make it safer for motorists using Anich's Bridge by alerting them to the closure of the flooded crossing and preventing possible harm or death which may be caused by attempting to cross a flooded road,” Mr Entsch said.
“Highly visible warnings such as flashing lights are needed because the road is subject to flash flooding with little advance notice, caused by upstream events.
“I commend council for putting up these projects, both of which will increase resilience to disasters and benefit the community and the many visitors to the area.”
Minister for Justice Michael Keenan said while the nature and size of the country’s landscape meant that natural hazards were a fact of life in Australia, communities are stepping up efforts to manage natural disaster risks.
“Preparing for, withstanding and recovering from disasters is not something the Government can do alone we need everyone in the community to get involved,” Mr Keenan said.
“This funding encourages a partnership approach to disaster resilience, with funding recipients helping to build a culture of shared responsibility with governments.”