Community Leaders Forum Meeting Summary – 7 September 2023
The RA hosts a regular Community Leaders Forum of local MPs and Mayors to help guide future decisions about recovery and reconstruction and ensure discussions are informed by community needs and driven by local community leaders.
Summaries of the meetings are being shared to provide the local community with information about the ongoing recovery program in the Northern Rivers. These summaries reflect the views of community leaders and are not to be considered as NSW Government policy.
At its meeting held on Thursday 7 September, forum members discussed a range of issues that local members had raised including the results of a recent community outreach program which saw homes in Lismore doorknocked to check on the flood recovery status of homeowners and tenants.
On Friday 1 September, 300 homes in South Lismore and 290 homes in North Lismore were doorknocked by Reconstruction Authority staff. They spoke with 200 residents who were at home. This effort will extend across Northern Rivers communities impacted by the devastating 2022 floods.
The aim of the outreach was to make sure that no one was falling through the cracks, listen to community concerns and to check on how people were doing. Residents were also informed and reminded about a range of other support services and programs that might be available to them including the Flood Property Assessment Program, Disaster Relief Grants and Back to Home Grants, which has been extended until December 2023.
Woodburn and Coraki will be the next communities doorknocked. Other locations and dates in 2023 include:
- 10 and 11 Oct in the Tweed LGA
- 31 Oct and 1 Nov in the Byron LGA
- 21 and 22 Nov in the Ballina LGA
- 5 and 6 Dec in the Clarence Valley LGA
Forum members raised wider community concerns about buyback homes being demolished and the desire for home materials to be recycled where possible. They were advised that no demolitions had taken place under the Resilient Homes Program and that the Northern Rivers Reconstruction Corporation (NRRC) is aiming to relocate homes. If relocation isn’t feasible, the NRRC will look for all opportunities to reuse and recycle materials. Staff are currently working with Northern Rivers local councils to finalise a program.
The future of Cabbage Tree Island was raised, and members agreed that the views and needs of the community should be respected. They will also seek the views of Jali Local Aboriginal Land Council and the NSW Aboriginal Housing Office.
Members got more detail on the peer review program of flood mapping and heard that it is slated to be delivered.
Members also met the person finalising the Resilient Land Strategy and relocations program. MPs and individual councils have been offered individual briefings. Councils have also had the opportunity to put forward land for assessment.
For more information visit the Resilient Homes Program page.
For more information visit the Resilient Lands Program page.