A further 17 state schools will re-open in Townsville today as the flood recovery continues, bringing to 40 the number re-opened since the flooding began.
In other developments:
- $4.02 million in hardship payments had been made to 23,631 people
- Fodder and fuel drops have been made, guided by local authorities with fodder available for 35,000 cattle and fuel stores begun for Richmond and Julia Creek. Cloncurry to follow in 24 hours
- 12 helicopters were distributing hay around Richmond
- Power reconnected to 15,000 homes out of 17,000 who lost power
- All sea ports open
- Buses and taxis returning to normal
- 8 people in remaining in Evac centres expected to be re housed
- 600 Townsville private rental properties identified
- Bond loan eligibility relaxed
- A local tradies register opened to add more local tradespeople to insurer-approved lists
Extra state government employees are being deployed to hasten all aspects of the recovery.
Major-General Stuart Smith, appointed on Friday, is already directing resources to places they are most needed.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk paid tribute to everyone working on recovery efforts.
“As one mayor said this morning, this is the first day they’ve seen the sun in 26 days,” the Premier said.
“We have a way to go but every day we move closer to getting life back to normal.
“Our western communities are dealing with heartbreak after heartbreak.
“These families, who love and care for their stock, are in the grip of unbelievable grief.
“My Agriculture Minister, Mark Furner, visited four communities today.
“State development minister Cameron Dick went to some yesterday.
“The Transport Minister and the Housing Minister, the Minister for Education and the Energy Minister along with our Townsville-based Communities Minister have all been on the ground with the most senior government officials to cut through any roadblocks to get people the assistance they need.
“We have been in contact with supermarkets to ensure fresh stocks of particularly vinegar to combat mould because our close relationship with those on the ground has told us that vinegar is worth more than gold.
“If it is needed we find out quickly and we act,” the Premier said.
Hot humid conditions will develop over the coming week.
Residents are warned to take care and use insect repellent.
The North Queensland Floods Appeal has received more than two million dollars so far.
The Premier has encouraged Queenslanders to continue to give generously.
- For information about grants and assistance go to the Queensland Government web page
or call 1800 173 349
- Resources and advice for businesses is available from Business Queensland.
- For information on making a donation go to the Queensland Government's web page on helping in a disaster.