Federal Member for Hunter Joel Fitzgibbon has welcomed the investment of $100,000 in a Cessnock City Council project to reduce the impact of flying-foxes on local residents.
The $50,000 Stream 3 Flying-Fox Grant from Local Government NSW, matched by Cessnock City Council, was granted following Councils adoption of the East Cessnock Flying-Fox Camp Management Plan in 2017. The project will support measures to better protect assets from highly populated flying-fox camps.
I thank Local Government NSW for acknowledging the significant problem of flying-foxes in the Hunter, for hearing our concerns and listening to our plight, Federal Member for Hunter Joel Fitzgibbon said.
The provision of this valuable funding is something the Turnbull Government has been disappointingly unprepared to do despite our many requests.
Mr Fitzgibbon initiated The Parliamentary Committee inquiring into the impact of flying-foxes on urban communities in response to the severe impacts flying-fox colonies were having on Hunter communities. The committee tabled its report last year and while experts agreed flying foxes play an important role in our ecology, the report recognised the extent of the problem for local communities and for local Councils.
I encourage residents impacted by flying-foxes in Cessnock to engage with Cessnock City Council when this program is implemented.