Lexton-Ben Major Bushfire Recovery Fund
Published on 01 June 2021
Pyrenees Shire Council has decided on the allocation of $400,000 of bushfire recovery funds following the 2019 Lexton-Ben Major Bushfire.
The funding will go to an array of important community projects, including the purchase and installation of solar panels for the new Lexton Community Hub, upgrades to the Lexton Public Hall, Lexton playground improvements, guard rails on the Lexton-Ararat Rd and a Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA) contingency fund.
Pyrenees Council Mayor Damian Ferrari said that the money would be invaluable to helping Lexton and the surrounding district recover from the fires.
“Council will be really excited to see the solar panels go up on the new Lexton Community Hub, not to mention the improvements to the playground in Lexton and Lexton Public Hall,” Cr Ferrari said.
Council received $200,000 from the National Bushfire Recovery Agency and $200,000 from Bushfire Recovery. The funding was provided to undertake activities facilitating recovery and renewal of the Lexton and district community.
In September 2020, Council resolved to allocate $100,000 from the Lexton Bushfire Recovery Fund to provide solar panels to the Lexton Community Hub. In addition, $88,242 was allocated for guard rail works on the Lexton-Ararat Road, which were not claimable under the Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA). A claim has been made to the NDRRA for costs Council incurred with clean-up following the fire, however, a contingency amount of $60,000 has been reserved should the claim not be successful.
The COVID-19 Pandemic in March 2020 meant that recovery efforts were put on hold. With the easing of restrictions this year, a Lexton-Ben Major Community Recovery Committee was established in April to consider planned recovery events. More details about the committee’s plans will be released soon.
On Tuesday 18 May, Council decided to allocate further recovery money, with $100,000 to upgrade the Lexton Public Hall, $20,000 towards the Lexton Community Hub to make up for the community-funded shortfall and provide $31,758 for playground improvements in Lexton.