Time to move?

THE Lockyer Valley Regional Council Mayor Steve Jones met with the Minister for Local Government, Community Recovery and Resilience David Crisafulli on Tuesday to discuss a more permanent solution to Laidley's flood problems.

Cr Jones said he met the minister to discuss a range of options for Laidley including assistance, through government funding, to make Laidley 'more resilient' after yet another major flood event.

The range of options include a land swap similar to Grantham which would apply to a Laidley for Laidley swap, levee banks, enlarged drainage around the town (wider and deeper drainage), raising the level of private homes, flood-proofing business and/or enabling businesses to move to higher areas in the town.

"I think the government should consider coming into the program to shift businesses," Cr Jones said.

"We would not however, support the compulsory move of any business in Laidley."

Cr Jones said he was concerned about the long-term ramifications for Laidley businesses should another major flood occur.

This was why the decision was deferred at the last council meeting on the proposal for a new shopping precinct in Laidley.

"I thought it would be an absolute tragedy to make a decision which may have bigger impacts on Laidley business further down the track in the case of another event," Cr Jones said.

Mr Crisafulli reiterated the mayor's statement after meeting Cr Jones on Tuesday morning and said the state government would leave control of local issues with local government.

"We had a very positive meeting," Mr Crisafulli said.

"We don't believe in forcing decisions onto people."

Mr Crisafulli confirmed a solution for Laidley was discussed at the meeting and said there were definite opportunities across the state to make more communities more flood resilient by creating a betterment fund with a request to the federal government for $100 million in funding, which would be matched dollar for dollar by the government.

"We are looking at establishing a betterment fund not just to rebuild, but to make communities more resilient," he said.


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