Councils pledge bushfire aid
NORTHERN RIVERS councils have leapt to the aid of fire-ravaged Victoria with pledges of financial assistance.
Lismore mayor Jenny Dowell will put to her council tonight a motion to donate $5000 through the Red Cross, while Byron Shire mayor Jan Barham will suggest a similar move at that council's next meeting on Thursday.
Kyogle, Richmond Valley and Ballina have all vowed to follow suit in the coming weeks.
Cr Dowell, originally from Victoria, has been particularly affected by the growing tragedy and loss of life.
“I know the area so I know how beautiful it was and I know how special the communities are,” the Ash Wednesday survivor said.
“I've lived with fires. I've experienced the ash falling out of the air and feeling like I was in a black and white movie because there's just no colour anywhere.”
Cr Dowell's brother and sister-in-law watched as the inferno flared two ridges from their home in Upper Beaconsfield over the weekend.
“They were ready to evacuate. Their neighbours had already gone. But the wind changed direction and they're fine,” she said.
Lismore Council staff have begun their own fundraising efforts. They will hold a morning tea on Thursday to raise funds, which will be added to the almost $450 from 2008 Christmas raffles.
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