Council to consider buyback of flood-prone homes
BUNDABERG Mayor Mal Forman has confirmed relocating residents from flood-prone areas and buying back land is an option Bundaberg Regional Council would consider as it moves forward with flood management strategies.
His comments came as Local Government and Community Recovery Minister David Crisafulli said the process had proved successful in Grantham following the 2011 floods, and it could also prove more cost-effective in the long term for other Queensland towns and cities.
Cr Forman said the idea was worth considering, but the community would also need to be involved before any decisions were made.
"This is one of many strategies we will be looking at," he said.
While there was not yet an estimate on how much this kind of proposal would cost, Cr Forman said the council would need financial assistance to make the idea a possibility.
"This is something we would have to have support on from the Federal and State Government to be able to go forward with," he said.
"It's a big issue and we'll be investigating all flood mitigation options to see where we go from here."
Mr Crisafulli said he didn't plan to force the idea on to any council or community, and it was up to both parties to consider whether it was an option they would be willing to explore.
"Bundaberg is Ground Zero. We have a duty to help and we understand how important every part of regional Queensland is, and we won't let them down," he said.
"But this is something where the interest has to be from the local government at the community members to progress.
"If council and the community do support this, then we will offer them the planning and assistance they need to go forward."
But Mr Crisafulli said discussing where the funding would come from would come only after the community had decided it was an option it may want to explore.
"State and federal funding is all on the table, but people don't want to hear squabbling about who's paying what," he said yesterday.
"The main thing is to rebuild stronger, more resilient communities in Queensland."