It is vital to learn from the floods to help us manage and understand future events. During the flood peak, we pegged water levels in 25 affected towns to measure flood heights. Data is also being collected through aerial photography and remote sensing. This information will be used in future flood management plans.
Our priority is working with communities, local government and water authorities to clear flood debris blockages that threaten buildings and infrastructure. We are also working swiftly to undertake strategic repairs to levees in the lower Loddon floodplain.
Since the floods, we have assessed the damage to environmental protection works previously funded by the North Central CMA such as fencing, revegetation and erosion. We have also assessed the flood impacts on the Bullock Creek Improvement Trust drainage system and instream structures along the lower Avoca River. These assessments informed a bid for Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Assistance (announcement pending).
Community meetings are enabling the North Central CMA to exchange information about flood behaviour and impacts.
To ensure that we are well placed to deal with future challenges, we will assess the resilience of our current projects to respond to flooding and our role in assisting local government planners in relation to floodplain developments.
A $10.58M bid for Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Assistance to repair/replace previously funded by the North Central CMA works was submitted to the Victorian government on 18 May 2011. This followed 1,100 individual site assessments to capture the level of damage, recommended action and cost estimate. An announcement regarding the level of funding secured is anticipated by mid July 2011. As funding is made available by the Victorian and Australian government, an implementation program will be developed and we will work with landholders to implement appropriate repair or replacement works.
As an alternative to the above, new funding opportunities are continually being announced. The best way to access these funds is to contact the Department of Human Services on 1300 650 172 or by contacting your local shire. The North Central CMA encourages affected landholders to make contact with these agencies as you may be eligible for additional funding even if you have previously received grants through these services.
For further information or to report water way damage and blockages, contact the North Central CMA on (03) 5448 7124.