Rain brings $1m road works bill
LAST week's deluge has so far cost Lismore City Council $1 million - and it is still rising.
So far, most of the bill is confined to four roads: Terania Creek Rd, south of Terania Creek, Wallace Rd at The Channon, Davis Rd at Jiggi and Billen Rd at Larnook.
Lismore City Council's director of infrastructure services Garry Hemsworth said repair of Terania Creek Rd alone would easily cost more than $500,000 after the ground was washed away from under part of it.
Davis Road at Jiggi also partially subsided.
"They were pretty serious," Mr Hemsworth said.
"Although we still have two lanes of traffic open they will need some sort of ratification."
Mr Hemsworth said land slipped onto Wallace Rd at Jiggi and Billen Rd at Larnook, which the council had already managed to clear and reopen to traffic.
"We are waiting for declaration of natural disaster funding - we haven't heard anything yet - but we have damage in excess of $1 million at this stage and we are still going around assessing further damage," he said.
Federal emergency management minister Robert McClelland said on the Tweed last week there was a low trigger threshold of $250,000 for natural disaster funding.
Late yesterday evening Minister for Police and Emergency Services Michael Gallacher announced natural disaster declarations for a number of councils across northern NSW.
The declarations apply to the Bellingen, Byron, Kyogle, Lismore and Richmond Valley local government areas.
The NSW Labor opposition had earlier in the day attacked the state government for taking too long to make the disaster declaration, accusing it of keeping councils in limbo about financing repair work across their shires.