CENTRAL Goldfields Shire Council has defended plans for Carisbrook's flood levee, saying culverts included in the designs should be sufficient.
It comes after concerns were raised by some attendees at a gathering marking 10 years since the 2011 floods, which devastated the community.
Work on a flood levee is underway in Carisbrook. Two of the four stages have been finished.
Central Goldfields Shire Council mayor Chris Meddows-Taylor said work on the third stage was nearing completion, with road works expected to be finished by the end of the month.
The council is seeking funding for a fourth and final stage, which Cr Meddows-Taylor said would link the completed levee stages between the Pyrenees Highway and Williams Road.
The fourth stage of the project includes construction of the western levee, south of the Pyrenees Highway, upgrading culverts under and adjacent to the highway, and installing culverts under the railway line.
"Council is aware that some members of the community are concerned with the size of the culverts proposed to go under the highway and the railway line," Cr Meddows-Taylor said.
"This was expressed at the time the planning application was made, although no appeal was lodged in relation to this matter."
Story continues below flood levee plans
He said the culvert details were designed by water specialists Entura Hydro after the Carisbrook Flood and Drainage Management Plan was developed in 2013.
The plans were then reviewed against updated flood hydrology and inundation modelling by Water Technology in 2019.
"Further, the plans have been approved by the North Central Catchment Management Authority, and reviewed by our staff as sufficient," Cr Meddows-Taylor said.
More than 250 homes in Carisbrook were inundated during the floods of January 2011.
The effects of the floods are still being felt by the community, with mental health among the prevalent concerns.
Council issued a planning permit for the third and fourth stages of Carisbrook's flood levee works in March 2020.
"Council undertook significant consultations with community members, public and private landholders and referral agencies prior to the planning application being lodged," the mayor said.
He described the fourth stage of the project as "shovel ready."
Cr Meddows-Taylor said all land needed for the project had been acquired.
"Council is waiting for the Risk Resilience Grants Program to open to seek additional funding of $1.2 million to augment the $600,000 council has allocated in this year's budget to enable stage four to be delivered," Cr Meddows-Taylor said.
"Council hopes this program will be open soon."
He said another reference group might be established when funding was secured for the final stage of the works.
An earlier reference group, which Cr Meddows-Taylor said was instrumental in ensuring the levee works moved, was dissolved after the contract was awarded for the third stage of the project.
"The reference group was established to provide advice on the implementation of the Carisbrook Flood and Drainage Management Plan," the mayor said.
"When the contract for stage three was awarded late last year, the reference group had fulfilled the scope of their terms of reference."
Council had expected the third stage of works to be finished by the end of 2020. Work on started on October 12, 2020.
Cr Meddows-Taylor said the council would provide monthly updates on the project via its website.
It comes in response to a request from the Central Goldfields Ratepayers and Residents Association, which its president shared during the flood anniversary gathering in Carisbrook on January 11.
The web link for the monthly project updates is www.centralgoldfields.vic.gov.au/currentprojects