Council supports Blue Mountains' community in recovery
Blue Mountains City Council hosted a bush fire recovery meeting for residents of Mount Tomah, Mount Wilson, Mount Irvine, Bell and Berambing on Saturday.
More than 100 community members attended the meeting at Mt Tomah Botanic Gardens, after 16 homes in the upper Blue Mountains were lost during bush fires in December. Another 30 properties were damaged.
Council invited key recovery agencies from State and Federal Government, as well as local support organisations, to the community meeting to assist residents.
Blue Mountains City Council emergency and recovery teams have visited the villages numerous times since Grose Valley bush fires devastated the area on Saturday, 21 December. Mayor Mark Greenhill and Council officers also met with Bell residents on 2 January and attended a community recovery meeting with Hawkesbury Council, for Bilpin residents, on 9 January.
“Unprecedented bush fires have devastated our nation. They have devastated our community and, no more than you, who are in this room today,” Mayor Greenhill said on Saturday. “We are gathered here today to start the journey of recovery with you.
“We know that this community is resilient. But we also know, from the 2013 bush fires in the Blue Mountains, that the recovery process will be long.”
Blue Mountains City Council has a Bush Fire Recovery Committee, and a dedicated Recovery Manager, who can prioritise calls for assistance from our bushfire affected community.
Council has also joined the Greater Sydney Regional Recovery Group with Hawkesbury, Lithgow and Wollondilly councils as well as a range of State Government agencies. The regional group will assist in the process of planning and developing recovery initiatives for our bush fire affected communities.
“Practically, Blue Mountains City Council has so far provided nearly 188,000 litres of potable water to our affected households in the upper mountains, provided fuel for generators, arrange burial of livestock, completed about 800 tree assessments on public land, assisted with waste needs and granted free concessions,” Mayor Greenhill said.
“We have also established the Blue Mountains Bush Fire Mayoral Relief Fund to help our residents recover and rebuild. This registered fund allows the community to assist our local residents in their time of need. Donations are tax deductible.”
For more information on how to donate go to bmcc.nsw.gov.au/mrf
Any community members affected by bush fires in this area, but unable to make the recovery meeting at Mount Tomah on Saturday should download the Bush Fire Recovery Guide from Council’s website.
Photo: Residents of Mount Tomah, Mount Wilson, Mount Irvine, Bell and Berambing attended Council’s Community Recovery Meeting on Saturday. Mayor Mark Greenhill addresses the community. Credit: Sarah Hyde.