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Feilding and District Relief Trust Fund Establishe

Trust Fund established
(Posted: February 17 - 1.30pm)

A FEILDING and District Relief Trust Fund to assist residents seriously affected by flooding has been established by Manawatu District Mayor Ian McKelvie.

He said that while half the district’s population had been badly affected by the flooding, the other half had mainly experienced periods of inconvenience only.

“All sorts of things have happened and many members of our community will need some sort of assistance.”

Mr McKelvie said the Government would be more willing to assist with cleanup costs if the community became pro-active and started putting money into a trust fund.

He hoped that he would initially be able to attract up to $70,000 sponsorship from major businesses.

“We have to do this quickly because when the mud dries people tend to forget about the disaster. The sooner we start it, the sooner we’ll be able to utilize it.”

Independent trustees will be appointed to run the fund.

Arrangements were being finalised for donations to be made at the Manawatu District Council office in Manchester Street, Feilding’s Information Centre and branches of the Bank of New Zealand.

Although a state of emergency remains in place, the situation throughout the district was beginning to stabilise this afternoon, with flooding levels receding, some bridges and roads reopened and cleanup work underway.

Residents in Seddon Street and parts of North Street, Feilding, were able to return to their homes, as were residents at the Woodfall Lodge Rest Home.

Many other houses, however, had been badly damaged by flooding and still uninhabitable, while 100 Tangimoana residents were still unable to return to their homes after the Rangitikei River burst its floodbanks last night and flooded parts of the beachside community.

Silt removal operations have started throughout Feilding, with the surrounds to supermarkets a high priority. People clearing their own silt were urged to be careful and wear gloves because of possible contamination.

ENDS

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