Thirty-one City staff and a convoy of vehicles left for Brisbane on Monday morning to help with the massive flood cleanup. Council will also next Monday consider my proposal to donate $200,000 to the Queensland Premier's Disaster Relief Appeal.
Our staff from Cleansing and Waste, Civil Maintenance, Parks Services, Fleet and Health Services will use council equipment, including garbage trucks, excavators, backhoes, tipper trucks and utes.
They will remain in Brisbane for a week and will be relieved by a second team of 29 staff from Tuesday 1 February 2011. All staff will receive their full salary for the time they are away, and the City will also meet reasonable out of pocket expenses.
I farewelled the staff before they left, thanking them on behalf of the City for their generosity. Media reports suggest it will not be easy, with scenes of great devastation and loss. I am proud that so many of our staff volunteered for this challenge.
Three-quarters of Queensland has been declared a disaster zone, with more than 86 towns and cities and well over 28,000 properties affected by the flooding. A number of people have been confirmed dead, and others are still missing.
In recent years, the City has given readily to support communities devastated by bushfires in Victoria, earthquakes in China and Haiti, floods in Pakistan and the tsunami across the Pacific.
I urge you to consider contributing to the Queensland Premier's Flood Relief Appeal.
- Queensland Premier's Flood Relief Appeal: www.qld.gov.au/floods/donate.html
- To make a donation phone 1800 219 028