June 2021 Storm and Flood Event - Resources for Recovery

Please see below for updates and recovery resources available to residents affected by the June storm and flood events. 

Community Updates

Since the June storm and flood event, there have been continuous assessment, recovery and support activities taking place in and around the Neerim, Noojee, Walhalla and Mt Baw Baw Tourist Road areas. The summaries below provide an update on the various activities to date: 

 

Recovery resources for impacted residents

Latest Community Update

Some great progress made recently from Eco Projects on behalf of the community and all the agencies involved.
Debris removal where appropriate including the following:
  • Removal and disposal of logs, debris within waterway Complete
  • Removal and disposal of concrete, failed retaining walls and rubbish within waterway Complete
  • Removal and disposal of poplar tree at unreserved crown land near the road to Extended Long Tunnel Mine. Complete
  • Temporary re-alignment of the CFA pipe at the Extended Long Tunnel Mine Complete
  • Excavation of CFA pump holes as directed by CFA member Complete
  • Rock or other short term protection measures at the 3 sites where the road is being undermined Complete
  • Liaison with the landholder (Jim) and agreement to leave sandbags in place until he undertakes works at the end of Spring Complete
  • Assessment and minor debris clean-up and limb removal at the large Pine Tree below the repaired road/landslip site as you enter town Complete
Unfortunately, the works at the Chinese Gardens Camp grounds (Walhalla Board of Management) were not able to be started due to time constraints but will be prioritised again when works recommence.
The above works were completed just in time ahead of the rainfall that occurred.
Works will now pause for approximately 2 weeks while WGCMA and RRV obtain construction designs to guide the works required at the Extended Long Tunnel Mine, Chinese Gardens and North Gardens.
These works are likely to occur during October.
The aim is to have all works complete by late Oct / early Nov but this will be weather dependant.

Creative Recovery Small Grants: 2021 Storms

The Creative Recovery Small Grants Program: 2021 Storms will support creatives and creative communities in regions significantly impacted by the storms and floods in June 2021.

This program is delivered by Regional Arts Victoria and supported by the Helen Mcpherson Smith Trust.

Funding Available

Up to $1,500 per successful applicant

Who can apply?

  • Individuals, groups and incorporated not-for-profit organisations

  • Applicants must be located in one of the impacted regions when the storm incident occurred.

  • Groups and organisations must either be legally incorporated and have an ABN or have an auspice organisation manage their grant.

  • Individual applicants must have an ABN or have an auspice organisation manage their grant.

  • Applicants must indicate significant impact from the storm incident.

  • Applicants can apply if they reside in the following regions.

    Eligible Local Government regions* 

    Bass Coast Baw Baw Cardinia Hepburn
    La Trobe Macedon Ranges Moorabool Murrindindi
    South Gippsland Wellington Yarra Ranges

    *Please note, an applicants postcode must reflect their residence in one of the above local government areas.

Key dates

Round Opens: 9am, 7 September 2021 via Regional Arts Victoria SmartyGrants portal

Round Closes: 5pm, 1 October 2021

Applicants will be notified of outcomes from Monday 25 October 2021.

Activities are to commence no earlier than 26 October 2021 and must be completed by 31 January 2022.

For more information, head to Regional Arts Victoria (rav.net.au) 

Online recovery Q&A panel - 5pm Monday 23 August

Following the severe weather events in June 2021, Council has worked with various agencies to coordinate relief and recovery efforts across Baw Baw Shire.

To address any questions or concerns from community members about these relief efforts, Council and Bushfire Recovery Victoria held a live question and answer panel, where community members could submit questions to any agency involved. 

You can watch a recording of the panel below, and click here to download(PDF, 958KB) a list of the questions submitted by community members prior to the event, as well as the answers provided.

During the Q&A panel, presentations were shared by the Victorian State Emergency Services (SES) and the Department of Transport (DoT). Copies of these presentations can be downloaded below:

Who took part in the panel?

The agencies that took part in the Q&A panel included:

  • Baw Baw Shire Council 
  • Bushfire Recovery Victoria
  • Regional Roads Victoria
  • Department of Families, Fairness and Housing
  • Victorian State Emergency Service
  • Agriculture Victoria
  • Red Cross
  • Andrew Crisp - Victorian Emergency Management Commissioner

Walhalla Online Community Meeting - 5pm Thursday 12 August

The purpose of this online meeting is to hear from the Walhalla community and get their input into the next steps for recovery efforts.

When: Thursday 12 August, 5.00pm
Where: Online via Zoom

Join Zoom Meeting

You can join the Zoom meeting by clicking this link: https://bawbawshire-vic-gov-au.zoom.us/j/85773565201?pwd=MUdZOHZ5UWptYWdnTGpSaURJQzZwQT09

Meeting ID: 857 7356 5201
Passcode: 212727 

Dial by your location

+61 8 7150 1149 Australia
+61 2 8015 6011 Australia
+61 3 7018 2005 Australia
+61 7 3185 3730 Australia
+61 8 6119 3900 Australia

Meeting ID: 857 7356 5201
Passcode: 212727

Find your local number: https://bawbawshire-vic-gov-au.zoom.us/u/kpcFAfFey

Click here to download the meeting agenda.(DOCX, 26KB)

Additional Details

  • An audio visual set-up will be available at the Mechanic’s Hall in Walhalla for those with connectivity issues, capped at 34 patrons due to COVID restrictions.
  • For anyone during or after the meeting feeling overwhelmed or needing support, Red Cross will be in attendance at the Mechanic’s Hall from 5pm till 8pm.
  • For those who are unable to attend, the meeting will be recorded and made available.

Storm and Flood Recovery Support Hotline 1800 560 760

Bushfire Recovery Victoria's Storm and Flood Recovery Hotline is open from 8am to 7pm Monday to Friday (excluding public holidays) and 9am to 1pm on weekends.
 
The Hotline is a single state-wide number (1800 560 760) that Victorians impacted by the June 2021 storms and floods can call for help or assistance.
 
Operators can assist you with registering for clean-up of structures on private property or accessing your own Recovery Support Worker, mental health and wellbeing support, financial counselling and information on available payments.
 

Call 1800 560 760 for help with:

  • Clean-Up on private property
  • Accessing your own Recovery Support Worker
  • Mental health and wellbeing support
  • Financial counselling support
  • Information on available payments
 

Hotline operating hours: 

  • 8am to 7pm Monday to Friday (excluding public holidays)
  • 9am to 1pm on weekends 

Commonwealth Disaster Assistance

The Australian Government has payments to help you if you’ve been directly affected by the Victorian storms and floods in June 2021.

Click here for a summary of the Federal support available.

Disaster Recovery Payment

The Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment is a lump sum payment of:

  • $1,000 for eligible adults
  • $400 for each eligible child under the age of 16.

You can claim a payment if you’ve been seriously affected as a direct result of the storms and floods. For example:

  • your home has been severely damaged or destroyed
  • you’ve been seriously injured.

Click here for more information about the Disaster Recovery Payment.

Disaster Recovery Allowance

You can also claim Disaster Recovery Allowance if you’ve lost income as a direct result of the storms and floods. If you’re eligible, you can get it for up to 13 weeks, starting from the date you lose income.

The Disaster Recovery Allowance is taxable. You can ask us to withhold tax deductions from your payments.

You can’t get the allowance if you get any of the following payments during your claim period:

To be eligible, you need to meet the Local Government Area (LGA) criteria and other rules. Check to see if you’re eligible for the following payments:

If you have a partner, you can both get a payment. You just need to make separate claims.

Click here for more information about the Disaster Recovery Allowance.

Victorian Government Emergency Relief

  • Information on Emergency Re-establishment Payments through VicEmergency can be found here.
  • Information for Health and Wellbeing after an Emergency can be found here.

You can also download the following fact sheets:

Farming and Agricultural Storm and Flood Recovery

Agriculture Victoria has dedicated flood advice and support for farms and primary producers affected by the recent weather.

Click here to access the dedicated Agriculture Victoria Storm and Flood Recovery webpage.

On the page you'll find information about:

  • Urgent animal health concerns – injury, loss or disease
  • Financial assistance and support
  • Emergency contacts and information
  • Technical support
  • Business support
  • Regional support
  • Flood warnings and rainfall information
  • Local government contact information
  • Catchment management authorities
  • Personal and family support
  • Other supports

Donations

Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund  

Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund has launched an appeal to raise emergency funds for our fellow Gippslanders impacted by floods. They act fast to distribute funds to those needing help, so they can access emergency resources like food or temporary accommodation. To donate or register for a GERF grant, visit www.gerf.org.au.

GIVIT

If you're unable to make a financial donation, but instead have goods or services you'd like to donate to the recovery program, you can donate via GIVIT.  GIVIT captures all donation offers online, removing the need for impacted communities to receive, sort, store and dispose of donations they don’t need. Visit www.givit.org.au for more.

Red Cross

Information on taking care of yourself and family after an emergency can be found here: https://www.redcross.org.au/get-help/emergencies/looking-after-yourself

If you are in need of support, crisis/emergency psychological first aid is available by calling 1800 232 969.

Wellbeing Support for Small Businesses - Partners in Wellbeing Helpline

The Partners in Wellbeing Helpline is a free, confidential service offering small business owners and their employees one-on-one access to trained wellbeing coaches, financial counsellors and business advisors.

The Partners in Wellbeing Helpline number is 1300 375 330.

Operating hours

Monday–Friday: 9am–10pm 
Saturday–Sunday: 9am–5pm

A message from Mayor Danny Goss - 18 June 2021

"It has been an incredibly difficult week for many Baw Baw Shire communities, particularly in our northern townships and areas around Walhalla, Noojee, Tanjil Bren and Aberfeldy.  

The damage of wind and flood has been significant, causing lengthy delays in power being restored, roads being reopened and crews gaining access to complete impact assessments.

Council is working around the clock alongside other agencies to get those assessments done. The process is very complicated because so many of the damaged assets – things like roads, bridges, campgrounds and carparks - belong to different agencies like Regional Roads Victoria, DELWP, Parks Victoria or the Catchment Management Authority.

Thankfully, much progress has been made and the various relevant authorities, including Council, are progressing towards completing their assessments so that the transition to recovery can take place and repair works can begin.

We want you to know that we’re moving as quickly as safety allows. We are aware that some people are suffering and the pace of progress can feel frustrating. It’s natural to feel overwhelmed and there is lots of support available.

If you are struggling and need support now, you can find a variety of resources at the Red Cross ‘Looking After Yourself’ webpage, on the Baw Baw Shire Council’s ‘Get Help and Support’ webpage or by contacting Council directly by phone on 1300 229 229.

We also know that our affected communities have experience in dealing with these kinds of emergency events. As we move into the recovery phase, your input into recovery planning will be actively sought.

Community meetings are an important part of our forward planning and they will be organised when it is safe and feasible to do so. At this stage, however, it is too early to put a timeline on their when this may occur. We appreciate and thank you for your patience as the assessment, clean up and transition to recovery progresses."

     - Mayor of Baw Baw Shire, Councillor Danny Goss