MidCoast Council offices and facilities reopened at 8:30am today, November 15, after suspending all its non-essential services following the NSW premier's disaster declaration on Monday, November 11.
The decision to suspend services was made so the council could make its resources available to support emergency services responding to the bushfire crisis in the region.
All council employees directly impacted by the fires were released by general manager Adrian Panuccio so they could look after their families and protect their properties.
Others assisted emergency services by ensuring public safety during road closures, protecting vital infrastructure, working to continue essential water and sewer services and assisting at the region's emergency operation centre.
"We want to thank the MidCoast community who have responded to official emergency messages and have risen to the challenges posed by the last few days," Mr Panuccio said.
"One of our first priorities has been to take water, generators and other essential items to isolated communities which have been hit hard by the fires, beginning with the small village of Bobin."
MidCoast Council has many priorities to attend to in the wake of the bushfire crisis and Mr Panucchio has asked for patience and understanding from the community as council works to return its services to full capacity.
With waste collection services disrupted by the bushfire crisis, council will work to get through the backlog of collections over the coming days.
Residents are advised to put their bins out as usual and all red bins will be collected by the end of Saturday (except in some rural areas impacted by fires).
Some fire-affected parts of the region, including Rainbow Flat, are in need of new bins and council is endeavouring to replace these as soon as possible.
The Taree Waste Management Centre on the Bucketts Way at Tinonee is closed, while the Tuncurry Waste Management Centre on Midge Orchid Road is open.
The Rural Fire Service is using the former Masters building at Taree as a staging centre and will continue to do so for as long as required.
"Our work as a council has only just begun and we will be supporting the recovery of our community over the coming weeks and months," Mr Panuccio said.
"This is being led by the Office of Emergency Management. As a result we will have staff focused on both the emergency and the recovery over the coming weeks, as well as continuing our usual services."
Those who have been impacted by the fires are advised to click here for further information, and a guide on how to receive the help you need.