Council plans fire victim help

COUNCILLORS will debate today what they should do to help those affected by last month’s bushfires.

They might offer a free collection of damaged green waste.

Or they might agree to offer rebates on the next water bill for those who used garden hoses for hours to protect their homes.

But as he surveyed the charred landscape on his horse property on Mackay Street at Lakes Creek yesterday, Roy Bromley had other ideas.

Roy lost hundreds of metres of boundary fence to the fire which ravaged his land.

“I think there are a lot of people around here who would like some sort of forum with the council and the firies to sort out how to prevent it happening again.

“That would be the most practical help the council could provide.

“A lot of the damage could have been prevented with better management and better communications,” he said.

Roy believes one of the reasons the blaze burned with such intensity on nearby Cooper Street was that council workers had spent weeks putting thick layers of mulch at the base of trees.

“It just became a fuel for the fire,” he said.

Rockhampton Regional Council chief executive Alastair Dawson has written a report for this afternoon’s council meeting outlining a number of ways to assist victims of the fires that terrorised Mount Morgan, Frenchville, Koongal, Norman Gardens and Bouldercombe.

He says primary among the issues raised by residents are concerns about water bills and the removal of damaged trees and shrubs.

“In relation to green waste, there was a significant number of piles of burnt timbers, trees and general green waste accumulating in front of some properties,” he says.

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