Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Premier Bligh, what is your 'Reconstruction Authority' reconstructing?

Residents demand action on cyclone Yasi damaged buildings

Natalie Dixon
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
© The Cairns Post

DISPUTES with insurance companies are holding up the demolition of cyclone-damaged buildings and residents fear a string of condemned structures will be still standing when the next storm season hits. 

"We had pretty gusty weather here over the weekend and the corrugated iron was flapping in the wind," she said. "The cyclone season hasn’t even started yet and it is already pretty scary. The sooner these types of buildings are brought down, the better."  Mrs Gilmore said several businesses in Tully’s main street needed work to make them safe.

"Many of the owners are still fighting with insurance companies," she said.  "It’s not on, this close to the Wet." Cassowary Coast Regional Council has issued 161 demolition permits since cyclone Yasi, with more than half in the Tully district.

Deputy Mayor Mark Nolan, who chairs the Cyclone Yasi Recovery Group, said many buildings had not been demolished and recently, 48 people had been sent show cause notices to explain why they had not even applied for demolition requests.

He said people had 20 days to respond or the council would step in and issue enforcement notices, eventually getting quotes to demolish the buildings themselves and billing the owners. "We have to take this step so that no one is placed at risk from flying debris should there be another active cyclone season,’’ he said.

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