Fairfax Media Network

Weather News

Council flood concerns considered in emergency shake-up

Tuesday December 11, 2012 - 10:58 EDT

Councils have praised the Victorian Government for announcing a restructure of how emergency services work together before, during and after natural disasters.

The overhaul includes the appointment of an emergency management commissioner and the culling of 40 government emergency management committees down to four groups.

Northern Victorian councils had suggested changes last year to how emergency agencies respond, after they were hit with severe flooding.

The Municipal Association of Victoria's Rob Spence has described the changes as significant and positive but says councils know they will not take effect until after this year's bushfire season.

"Volunteers have been frustrated about their capacity to communicate to the top level about their concern and I think what this is doing is setting up a structure where the Deputy Premier indicated the volunteers will be involved in the development of the terms of reference," he said.

He says councils' concerns about how floods during the past two years were handled have been listened to.

"Under the current model, enormous obligation is put on local government to plan locally, where in a number of areas the skill set's not there," he said.

"What this model does is really bring all the agencies to the table."


- ABC

© ABC 2012

More breaking news

ABC News
Sydney Morning Herald
National Nine News
News Limited

Display Your Local Weather

Weather News

Agriculture white paper: Drought relief, dams key focus of Coalition's blueprint for rural Australia

00:50 EST

More money for dams, extra drought relief and measures to boost the returns to farmers from sales at home and abroad are part of the Federal Government's long-awaited blueprint for agriculture.

Parts of Queensland wake under a veil of fog.

16:06 EST

Following a strong cold front which swept over southeastern parts of the nation yesterday, cool air settled under clear skies over parts of the sunshine state.

What will be in the Federal Government's Agricultural White Paper

15:53 EST

The Federal Government's White Paper on the Competitiveness of Australia's agriculture sector, to be released on the weekend, will drive long-term agricultural policies.