8,000 have signed a petition calling on the NSW Premier to front a meeting in Lismore and answer questions about the slow pace of the recovery

David Kirkpatrick
Updated October 4 2022 - 2:30pm, first published September 28 2022 - 11:49am

Frustrations with the lack of progress on land swaps, buybacks and relocations in the wake of two major floods this year are beginning to boil over.

A petition is calling on the NSW Government to answer questions about land swaps, relocations and buybacks
A petition is calling on the NSW Government to answer questions about land swaps, relocations and buybacks

A petition calling on the NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet and other senior officials to come to Lismore and face questions about flood recovery efforts is gathering momentum.

The petition on change.org has over 8,000 signatures and climbing.

The wording in the petition is highly emotive and mentions a deeply traumatised community in need of action as soon as possible.

"There have been two inquiries yet still no concrete action from the government," the petition states.

"Thousands of displaced residents are now couch surfing or living in vans and tents after their house was destroyed.

"We have been through enough. We are traumatised. We need certainty about our future and we need it now."

Petition organisers want the NSW Premier, the Minister for Regional NSW, Minister for Emergency services and representatives from the Johns Lyng Group (JLG), Resilience NSW and the CEO of the Northern Rivers Reconstruction Corporation (NRRC) to front up to a meeting and answer questions from residents.

"We have tried asking these questions but we are not getting any answers," the petition states.

"We are sick of the spin. We are sick and tired of being put on hold on the phone, uploading documents online over and over again. We are sick of one agency pointing the finger at other agencies, we are sick of the delays in processing grants, in getting reports for repairs, and getting repairs.

"The trauma we all feel following the floods is compounded by the uncertainty about our future. Will we all be eligible for a buy back, land swap or relocation of our home? Should we continue repairing our home?

"Premier, these are our lives you are playing with. By not giving us certainty, you are causing more trauma."

David Kirkpatrick

I'm a media professional with over 34 years of experience in public relations and journalism, including a decade setting Lismore's news agenda as the editor of The Northern Star. I have proven track record in growing audiences and improving engagement by delivering quality local stories for and about the Lismore community.