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Yenda flood class action unlikely now

Wednesday January 23, 2013 - 09:34 EDT

Yenda flood victims want the state government to fund a multi-million dollar rebuild of the East Mirrool regulator to limit future flooding.

Association President, and Griffith Councillor Paul Rossetto believes the one metre of soil at the site is an illegal levee as an initial check has found no record of permission to do the works.

Murrumbidgee Irrigation (MI) is yet to comment after Griffith City Council resolved last night to write to the company, seeking the removal of the soil.

Councillor Rossetto says the entire 70 year old structure needs rebuilding and it is a state responsibility.

"There is another two metres of blocked boards that needs to be freed up, but that structure needs to be redesigned going forward," he said.

"So this again is where the Office of Water has to come in, provide the funding under the state government and redesign the whole system so that the creek will flow naturally, the way it did pre-1989."

The Yenda Flood Victims group says a class action is now unlikely, if the works go ahead.

Mr Rossetto says legal action now is a last resort.

"It's a very far and remote possibility at this stage," he said.

"Firstly, it's going to be very, very expensive and I can't see the people that have lost everything are going to be able to foot the money.

"Second is that if the government does come to the party and fixes the escape and the creek runs naturally then there won't be as great a need to pursue the class action, because people will be happy with the situation."

Mr Rossetto says removing the soil is all MI can do, but the Office of Water has overriding responsibility for flood planning and funding in the area, and it needs to redesign the regulator.

"The mechanical doors only open one way, they need to be two way to let the creek flow straight across the way it used to in 1989," he said.

"And then the older board structure needs to be modernised, so they're talking about piping the main canal under the creek, so that the creek has natural flow, similar to the Mulwala canal system."


- ABC

© ABC 2013

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