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Local Member praises fire-fighters in the Bega Valley and Tumut.

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Media Release

Mike Kelly AM MP Federal Member for Eden-Monaro Parliamentary Secretary for Defence Support

Office of the Hon. Dr Mike Kelly AM MP

Member for Eden-Monaro, Shop 16, City Link Plaza, Morisset Street, Queanbeyan NSW 2620

Friday 6 February 2009

Local Member praises fire-fighters in the Bega Valley and Tumut Mike Kelly the Federal Member for Eden-Monaro this week praised fire-fighters fighting blazes across NSW, particularly in the Bega Valley and around Tumut. Dr Kelly rang the Rural Fire Service (RFS) over the past week to get an on-the-ground update and to thank the teams from Bega Valley and the Riverina RFS personally.

After talking with the RFS teams Dr Kelly has written to the Attorney General, the Hon Robert McClelland who has said the Rudd Labor Government is ready to respond to any requests from the NSW Government for assistance.

Currently the Bega Valley fire near Pambula/Wyndham is still uncontained and has burnt out over 1100ha of bushland in two weeks.

Three fires are currently being monitored after being contained by the Riverina RFS around Tumut. All three fires around Tumut started about a week ago.

Dr Kelly said; “These men and women have been fighting these blazes for a number of days now and have done a brilliant job working to control the fires in excessive heat and rugged country.

“The majority of these people fighting these fires are volunteers with the RFS and come from a diverse range of professions. These inspiring people give their time to protect their communities.

“The difficult conditions are set to deteriorate with emergency services warning that severe weather conditions will create dangerous bushfire conditions.

“In these conditions I urge people to take care and keep an eye out for their neighbours, particularly the elderly.

“The Attorney General has informed me that the Rudd Labor Government is ready to respond to request of assistance from the NSW Government.

“The Rudd Labor Government is continuing to support RFS crews through programs like the Volunteer Grants programs, including Bermagui Rural Fire Service which I visited recently.

“I hope to be able to meet with the Tumut and Bega Valley crews over the coming months to thank them personally.

“I would again like to thank the great work that the Rural Fire Service is doing in towns and communities across Eden-Monaro and wish them well for the remainder of the bushfire season”, said Dr Kelly.

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