Labor leader pounds the pavement in Lismore
OPPOSITION leader Bill Shorten took to the streets of Lismore this afternoon as part of his tour of the flood recovery effort around the Northern Rivers.
Mr Shorten justified his visit two weeks after the devastating natural disaster and said it's important to reassure affected residents that they aren't forgotten by our nation's leaders.
"(Labor) get that recovery isn't done in 24 hours or a week," Mr Shorten said.
In saying that, Mr Shorten said he called Lismore Mayor Isaac Smith on Monday, April 3 following the flood.
He said Labor was committed to upholding the expectations of ravaged communities by standing up for residents "not just on the day it happens but the weeks and months ahead".
Part of that fight for residents Mr Shorten said is keeping a watchful eye on insurance companies.
He also recommended the NSW Government consider a moratorium on payroll tax to help businesses back on their feet.
The visit coincided with the Federal Government announcing Category C disaster grants for Lismore and Murwillumbah.
Richmond MP Justine Elliot rejected claims that the State Labor Government's application for Category C funding for affected Queensland towns was inadequate with speculation the application was only a page long.
Ms Elliot said to her knowledge the application was comprehensive and labelled the behaviour of Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce as a "spoilt immature child" over the handling of the funding allocation.
Mr Shorten urged for all levels of government "to work together and facilitate people getting back on their feet".
He called Lismore "a very special community" and admired its strong spirit during the city's recovery.
During his walk down the city centre, Mr Shorten spoke to numerous business owners and residents about their plight and their move towards recovery.
He was accompanied by former Page MP Janelle Saffin, Lismore Mayor Isaac Smith and councillor Eddie Lloyd.