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Bushfire clean-up underway in Southern NSW

21 February 2020

The operation to clean-up homes and businesses destroyed by bushfire is now underway on the NSW South Coast with excavators and bulldozers arriving in Mogo to clear debris.

Deputy Premier and Minister responsible for Disaster Recovery John Barilaro, NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet, Member for Bega Andrew Constance, NSW Police Assistant Commissioner and State Recovery Coordinator Mick Willing and Laing O’Rourke Managing Director Cathal O’Rourke, were on site in Mogo yesterday to kick off the clean-up.

“The small community of Mogo has suffered enormously this bushfire season, with 44 homes lost, plus more than 100 other properties including outbuildings and businesses destroyed,” Mr Barilaro said.

“Yesterday is an important day for people on the South Coast and in Mogo. It marks a new beginning, the sooner these structures are cleared the sooner people can start to rebuild their lives.”

Mr Perrottet said while there is a huge amount of work ahead, yesterday was a significant step forward.

“The NSW Government and recovery contractor Laing O’Rourke have responded quickly to get boots on the ground helping communities recover and get back on their feet,” Mr Perrottet said.

“Laing O’Rourke will work with qualified local contractors and suppliers where possible, to take advantage of local expertise and help the recovery happen swiftly.”

Mr Constance said more than 5,000 people to date have registered for the opt-in, to clean-up bushfire destroyed properties.

“I urge all local homeowners and businesses impacted by the bushfires to register online, call Service NSW, visit their local Recovery Centre or speak to the local recovery team to find out about the clean-up,” Mr Constance said.

Mr Willing, who is coordinating the NSW recovery effort said it is vital that large volumes of waste, including toxic materials like asbestos are disposed of correctly.

“The huge volume of waste which needs to be safely disposed of is challenging,” Mr Willing said.

“We have heard people’s concerns about waste management and I want to assure communities that we have their safety top of mind, and are working closely with councils, the EPA and NSW Public Works Advisory.”

The recovery efforts in Mogo follow the successful clean-up of properties at Rainbow Flat last week with a pilot clean-up operation also underway in the Blue Mountains.

The NSW Government and Commonwealth Government are funding the clean-up for insured and uninsured owners of properties so that people have more money to rebuild their homes.

With more than 2,400 houses and thousands of other structures destroyed by bushfire in NSW this season, the funding for clean-up is just one way the NSW and Commonwealth Governments are committed to helping bushfire communities on the path to recovery.

To register for the opt-in property clean-up service, call 13 77 88 or register online at www.service.nsw.gov.au.

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