- The Council Support Fund includes funding to coordinate recovery activities
- 129 houses have been deemed 'uninhabitable'
- Over 556 hardship payments have been made
The Victorian government has announced financial support for local communities across the Dandenong Ranges, Central West Victoria and Gippsland following catastrophic storms in the area.
Currently, $8.2 million will be provided to 10 storm and flood-ridden councils in these regions through the Council Support Fund. The Fund will ensure the councils have the appropriate recovery staff and expertise on-ground with dedicated local teams to coordinate recovery activities.
Funding can also be used to employ additional recovery staff, onboard specialist contractors and provide targeted training support to facilitate the recovery of local communities.
“We know that recovery needs to be driven by locals. This funding means councils will be able to take the lead in supporting their communities to recover – and we’ll stand with them every step of the way.”
Jaclyn Symes, Acting Minister for Police and Emergency Services
The eligible local government areas are Yarra Ranges, Latrobe, Baw Baw, Cardinia, Hepburn, Macedon Ranges, Moorabool, Murrindindi, South Gippsland and Wellington.
Initial assessments show 264 structures have been damaged due to the storms and flooding with 129 of these deemed uninhabitable.
So far, more than 1,000 emergency service personnel have worked on recovery events, with coordination by Bushfire Recovery Victoria. Over 556 hardship payments have been made, totalling $634,000, with additional grants available for both households and businesses in affected areas.
“Councils are close to their local communities and are often best placed to facilitate recovery efforts on the ground,” added Shaun Leane, the Minister for Local Government.
“This funding will ensure recovery happens where it is most needed and as quickly as possible.”