Who would have thought that when 2020 commenced some three months ago that we would experience such a range of severe incidents in the first quarter of the year.
We saw the continuation of the current drought, severe bush fires, then some serious flooding as heavy rains came to some areas of the State, and now the Covid-19 Virus.
Fortunately for Bogan Shire residents we have missed out on bushfires and flooding, and at the time of writing this report (Sunday, March 22) there are no reports of the coronavirus.
Situations are rapidly changing in relation to stimulus packages, shut downs, schools, number of cases both in Australia and Internationally etc.
There are a few things to our advantage to help residents in a small rural community like ours. Isolation from major centres must help, even though it seems unlikely we will be completely exempt as the situation is predicted to worsen.
Building on this, consistent hygiene measures, avoiding any close contact outside families or social distance, staying at home as much as possible and helping our senior active or disadvantage residents whenever possible must help containment.
The fact that we are a safe, friendly and kind community will help us do out bit to help "flatten the curve" of the virus.
From Council's perspective measures have been put in place to ensure essential water, sewerage and garbage services are maintained if the situation worsens and some staff need to quarantine.
It is essential that the stimulus package measures, particularly for small businesses, anyone who has become unemployed, Newstart payments, apprentice and wages subsidies and for charities, reaches rural centres like ours without delay.
History shows that often announcements of assistance measures or packages by the Prime Minister or Premiers or Governments are often thwarted or delayed by bureaucracy or criteria or those responsible for delivering these measures.
The unprecedented urgency and seriousness of this crisis must ensure prompt delivery of cash assistance to those radically effected by the virus.
Our local supermarkets are doing their very best to ensure supplies are maintained for local and regular shoppers, with their supplies adversely effected by excessive demand and panic buying in metropolitan areas.
A nil tolerance exists for anyone or groups from afar coming to local supermarkets and trying to strip their shelves!
Unfortunately a number of future local events have had to be postpones or cancelled as per Government restrictions on numbers. Seniors Week, Nyngan Show, Easter Church Services and all Anzac Day commemoratives events including a navy helicopter are seven off.
Tayla Martin's "Since the Flood" Program, opening of the new Museum area and combined Church Service to recognise the 30th Anniversary of the 1990 Flood join the list. Stormco has also had to cancel its annual visit.
Council remains concerned for our community's welfare and remains ready to help.