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Federal-Victorian Governments join forces to halt flood damage.



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M31/2001 22 February 2001

JOINT RELEASE

SENATOR IAN MACDONALD SHERRYL GARBUTT MP

MINISTER FOR REGIONAL SERVICES, TERRITORIES AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT

VICTORIAN MINISTER FOR ENVIRONMENT AND CONSERVATION

FEDERAL-VICTORIAN GOVERNMENTS JOIN FORCES TO HALT FLOOD DAMAGE

The Federal Government and Victorian State and Local Governments are joining forces to implement flood mitigation measures in 2000-2001 with a value to $2.3 million.

Six flood mitigation projects were announced today by the Minister for Regional Services, Territories and Local Government, Senator Ian Macdonald, and the Victorian Minister for Environment and Conservation, Ms Sherryl Garbutt.

“Funding for these measures has been made available under the second round of the Regional Flood Mitigation Programme,” Senator Macdonald said.

“I know the devastation floods can cause, particularly in regional communities.  These projects will provide many benefits to the local regions.  Not only will the debilitating effects of flooding be reduced, the projects will also provide new employment opportunities.

“The aim of the Federal Government’s three-year $20 million Programme is to stimulate up to $60 million of new investment in mitigation works, with the Federal Government’s contribution to be matched by other spheres of government.”

Ms Garbutt said that flooding could be catastrophic for rural and regional towns, both socially and economically.

“This is a very important project to many communities in country Victoria.  These projects will ultimately protect homes, community infrastructure, and small businesses, which often bear many of the impacts from severe flooding,” Ms Garbutt said.

“The Bracks Government will match both the Howard Government and Local Government funding, with the Victorian Government’s contribution totalling $773,000 this year”.

“It is important that priorities for these projects are set at a regional level and this has been achieved through our Catchment Management Authorities and their regional flood plain management strategies.”

Senator Macdonald said the flood mitigation measures would provide new employment opportunities through the construction of detention basins and levees and augmentation of culverts to protect the rural communities in Victoria that are most ‘at-risk’.

“The Federal Government will contribute one third of the cost of the projects.  The Victorian Government and successful councils will provide the balance, with local councils providing ongoing maintenance,” Senator Macdonald said.

The six flood mitigation projects for 2000-2001 with funding contributions from State, Commonwealth and Local governments will be undertaken at:

Wangaratta ($300,000) ● Numurkah, Moira Shire ($300,000) ● Woodend, Macedon Shire ($690,000) ● Traralgon, LaTrobe Shire ($250,000) ●

Euroa, Strathbogie Shire ($580,000) ● Warragul, Baw Baw Shire ($300,000) ●

“These measures will help to prevent the problems of flooding and the associated loss suffered by residents and businesses in rural Victoria occurring again in the future,” Ms  Garbutt said.

“New money will be injected into much-needed mitigation works through a partnership between Federal, State and Local governments,” Senator Macdonald said.

Media Contacts:

Jackie Westcombe, Senator Macdonald’s Office: (02) 6277 7060 / (0411) 250 869 Sally Gibson, Ms Garbutt's Office: (03) 9651 5799 / (0407) 530 473

ATTACHMENT

Victorian Projects for Regional Flood Mitigation Programme Year 2

Euroa (Ongoing project)

Development of flood levees and bund walls.

$580,000 total project budget for 2000-2001

Warragul (Ongoing project)

Construction of retarding basins and augmenting culverts.

$300,000 total project budget for 2000-2001

Wangaratta

Construction of additional culverts on the Ovens/King Rivers Floodplain; levee at Three Mile Creek.

$300,000 total project budget for 2000-2001

Numurkah

Increase flood capacity of Station Street Weir; re-location of re-entry of the hospital depression to downstream of Station Street.

$300,000 total project budget for 2000-2001

Woodend

Construction of detention basins and levees.

$690,000 total project budget for 2000-2001

Traralgon

Voluntary purchase of houses to remove obstructions to floodwaters.

$250,000 total project budget for 2000-2001

Total: $2.319 Million

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© Commonwealth of Australia 2000 Last updated:  Friday, 23 February 2001