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Today, Deputy Premier Steven Miles and State Recovery Coordinator Paul de Jersey visited Dallarnil in the North Burnett to see the recovery effort firsthand following ex tropical cyclone Seth which hit the small township on Saturday, 8 January 2022.

“We thank the Deputy Premier and State Recovery Coordinator for taking the time to visit affected residents in Dallarnil. It is important that all communities, regardless of their size or profile, are given the same amount of respect and support during times of crisis,” Acting Mayor Radel said.

It has been a very emotional time for impacted residents and the effects are likely to be felt for many years to come.

“I am so proud of how this community and the wider North Burnett, have banded together to support those affected. The best of community shines through during the darkest of times.

As Council was preparing for a potential flooding event following heavy rain in early December, the State Government dropped a bombshell, reducing Council’s Federal Assistance Grants by $700,000 a year over the next three years, equating to a $2 million reduction.

“This is vital funding that Council relies on to deliver essential services to the community, including our disaster management preparedness.

“As a region we are prone to natural disasters. This event at Dallarnil is the 7th declared event in the last 10 years.

“This significant funding cut is just another kick in the guts for our small region while we are already down.

Council have been working closely with the State Government and Queensland Treasury Corporation over the past 3 years to move the Council into a more financially sustainable position. Service level changes to road maintenance, waste facility hours, and Customer Service and Library hours have been implemented to try to improve the bottom line.

“We demand that the State Government provide an explanation on how we are expected to make up this funding shortfall. What do they want us to do?

“Following years of drought and now with the impacts of flood, a funding gap should not be expected to be filled by our ratepayers. This reduction in funding is equivalent to a 17% general rate rise.

“The Deputy Premier, our Minister for State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning, has a lot to answer for and our community deserves an answer and not just a photo opportunity”.