State Government pledges $30 million towards Kimberley floods recovery efforts and extra staff

Katya MinnsBroome Advertiser
Minister for Emergency Management Stephen Dawson and Kimberley MLA Divina D'Anna.
Camera IconMinister for Emergency Management Stephen Dawson and Kimberley MLA Divina D'Anna. Credit: Supplied/Claire Dearle./Claire Dearle.

The State Government have announced a further $30 million will go towards clean-up efforts for flood-affected communities in the Kimberley, stationing up to 20 local recovery officers across the region.

The joint initiative by the State and Federal governments will place staff for up to two years in the Fitzroy Crossing and Derby recovery hubs, pop-up hubs and other outreach services across affected communities such as Bayulu, Kupungarri and Camballin.

Positions include community recovery officers and cultural navigators, as well as industry recovery officers to work alongside affected businesses and industries.

Minister for Emergency Services Stephen Dawson said four full-time staff and funding for additional recovery resources would be allocated to the Shire of Derby-West Kimberley, which will be taking control over recovery efforts from government agencies such as the Department of Fire and Emergency Services.

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“They’ve got the relationships, they’ve got people on the ground and they’ve got the capacity to actually get the recovery moving quicker than agencies from Perth or elsewhere,” he said.

“DFES will have the overall co-ordination role but on the ground, the shire is responsible for helping get things back on track.”

Costs previously incurred by local councils, organisations and individuals for flood clean-up activities, such as the removal and disposal of demolition debris and hazardous waste, will also be reimbursed.

Kimberley MLA Divina D’Anna said community spirit was rising, with locals staying informed by the hubs of updates on flood recovery efforts and rebuilding of structures and accommodation.

“It’s becoming more co-ordinated and tangible,” she said.

“They can see what kind of bridges are being designed, they can see that they can cross the river, they can actually go home and sleep in their own space.”

Main Roads has announced the first pylons for the damaged Fitzroy Crossing bridge arrived this week, with installation work expected to start in early June.

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