Orange City Council’s maintenance crews are pushing ahead with the massive task of maintaining the city’s parks and reserves amid damp conditions and staffing shortages due to COVID-19.
The city has received 475 millimeters of rain since the beginning of November, with ground conditions rendering some areas inaccessible for mowing teams, while regular showers and spring and summer growth has created further difficulties for Council crews and contractors.
Orange Mayor Jason Hamling said the team was pulling out all the stops to maintain the city’s presentation, while ensuring parks, gardens and open spaces were available for the community to use.
“Council has a proactive works program that prioritises the maintenance of high-use areas across the city, such as Robertson Park and Cook Park, Moulder Park and the Orange Botanic
Gardens, as well as playgrounds, sporting fields and key entry roads to Orange,” Cr Hamling said.
“While all our public spaces are important, others take a lower priority, especially when we are experiencing limitations due to weather and staffing shortages due to COVID-19.”
The rain has made it difficult to keep the grass under control as crews simply cannot get the machinery into some places and it is taking longer to mow areas because of how quickly the
grass has grown.
Mayor Hamling is asking the community to be patient during this time.
“Staff availability is having a huge impact on what we can get to and while we do have contractors, they’re experiencing the same challenges as we are,” Cr Hamling said.
Temporary signs advising the community of ground conditions and mowing delays have been installed in affected areas.