Two members of staff from the Central Goldfields Shire Council will provide assistance to the East Gippsland Shire Council in the wake of the 2019/2020 bushfires.
James Maw – Council’s Manager of Statutory Services – is on site in East Gippsland for one week having been involved with the recovery efforts after Black Saturday as well as the 2011 floods in the Loddon and Buloke Shires.
James is assisting East Gippsland Shire Council as they conduct assessments of bushfire affected properties in the surrounding townships of Bairnsdale.
These assessments have included assessment of property damage, public health risks, management of referrals to other agencies for individual property owners and psychological first aid.
James has also been involved in training personnel from other councils who are also offering assistance.
Belinda McKnight – Council’s Emergency Management Coordinator – will be deployed next week and will be involved in secondary impact assessment coordination.
Belinda will also play a key role in training personnel in using Crisisworks – an online system used to manage emergencies, risk and recovery.
Central Goldfields Shire Council Chief Administrator Noel Harvey said it was a great example of how councils across Victoria are supporting their counterparts as they begin a long and exhaustive recovery process.
“We are pleased to be able to offer assistance to the East Gippsland Shire Council and with James’ extensive experience in bushfire recovery and Belinda’s experience in emergency management coordination we have no doubt their expertise and knowledge will be of great value to the East Gippsland Shire during this challenging period.”
The arrangement is part of the Protocol for Inter Council Emergency Management Resource Sharing – which is detailed in every councils Municipal Emergency Management Plan. The protocol outlines how councils can provide assistance to each other without impacting on their own ability to prepare and respond to emergencies in their own area.