The Morrison-McCormack Government has committed to support every recommendation in the Royal Commission into National Disaster Arrangements Report for which it is responsible and establish a new National Resilience, Relief and Recovery Agency.
Federal Member for Cowper Pat Conaghan welcomed Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Emergency Management Minister David Littleproud’s commitment to act on the report’s recommendations and said improving the way our country responds to natural disasters is extremely important.
“Our community was hit hard by the Black Summer Bushfires and I know many residents are still recovering,” he said.
“With fires of the magnitude we saw last spring and summer, it’s important the Commonwealth Government can mobilise Commonwealth resources quickly to help tackle the challenges states and local communities face during disasters.
“The Royal Commission’s recommendation for the Australian Government to legislate to give it the power to declare a national emergency will help to achieve this.
“I am also pleased our Government has agreed to support the recommendation to examine engagement with essential services. Unreliable mobile phone and telecommunications was probably the top complaint I received from residents and Rural Fire Service (RFS) volunteers during and after the bushfires.
“Some RFS brigades could only communicate by door-knocking and this took up precious time which could have been spent on back-burning and making other preparations to preserve life and property.”
The Australian Government’s response to the Royal Commission’s report is available here.
As it is one year since the bushfires, Mr Conaghan wanted to provide an update on the Federal Government assistance delivered to bushfire-affected residents and Councils in Cowper. It so far totals $69.5 million:
Residents and businesses that were severely impacted by bushfire and have not as yet applied for assistance can still do so for most programs – visit the National Bushfire Recovery Agency’s website.
Liz Spry – 0418 928 744