Building regional strength
DISASTER education and resilience is under way in the Central Highlands with the Central Highlands Regional Council sharing in more than $1.1million of disaster mitigation funding with seven other local councils thanks to funding from the Palaszczuk Government.
The CHRC has two projects approved through this round of Queensland Disaster Resilience Fund (QDRF) which are a Bluff flood mitigation study and community resilience education and emergency volunteer recruitment project.
Coordinator Emergency Management & Community Resilience & Local Disaster co-ordinator with the CHRC Glenn Bell explained the aim of the resilience education program.
"The aim of that program is to set up interactive information for the public and be able to our SES volunteers, fire fighters and volunteers into the communities and provide community safety information,” Mr Bell said.
"As we get our programs going for community safety we provide that into the community instead of them trying to chase that up.
"The goal is to enhance community knowledge on their safety with disaster and emergency management.
"Understanding the risks for their own communities, this will get right out to the rural communities.
"We can deliver that to them and its installing resilience.”
According to Mr Bell, this project has been on council's agenda for a while.
"We've wanted to put something like this together for a number of years it's just trying to find the funding to do it,” Mr Bell said.
"Certainly this round of funding has provided a platform specifically for these type of projects.
"This is going to provide them some information so that they an better prepare should an event occur.”
CHRC flood mitigation project officer Keith Jarrett discussed more about the Bluff flood mitigation study.
"Council has committed a project budget of $120k of which $60k has been provided through the State Government grant funding, to undertake the study and report on findings and recommendations in the 2019/20 financial year,” Mr Jarrett said.
"The Bluff Township has approximately 420 residents and was impacted by the 2010/11 flood event.
"Council's subsequent Floodplain Management Study from 2012-14 identified the Bluff Township as a community at risk from both flash flooding from stormwater run-off and riverine flooding from Duckworth, Bluff and Rufus Creeks.
"In 2014 Council undertook community consultation in the lead up to the completion and adoption of the Flood Management Plan.
”Bluff residents have recently raised concerns through Council's Bluff Community Reference Group, requesting Council address the flood risk and rising flood insurance pricing.
"The project and grant funding will be used to engage with the Bluff community and other relevant stakeholders to explore and identify mitigation and community resilience options.”
The Palaszczuk Government's QDRF is made up of four-rounds covering $38 million in mitigation projects around the state.