NSW Labor demands access to Perrotet government’s contingency plan

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Labor has called on the NSW government to release its emergency management plans after reports will urge an independent assessment to shut down Resilience NSW.

The review, which examines the response to the state’s recent flooding, will recommend that the disaster relief agency be dismantled and a new body, called Hawk, be established. The Daily Telegraph reports.

Resilience NSW was established after the Black Summer 2019-20 wildfires to coordinate disaster recovery and disaster recovery, but faced criticism after the 2022 floods in the north of the state.

Devastating flooding in the Northern Rivers and Hawkesbury Nepean regions in February and March killed 13 people and destroyed more than 4,000 homes.

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72 hours of silence

Labor leader Chris Minns said on Saturday it had been 72 hours since news of the agency’s alleged demise had been leaked and urged the government to clarify its plans for emergency management in the state.

“First, there are a lot of officials who work at that agency who deserve to know what the future of that agency is,” Minns told reporters in Kiama.

“Second, we can expect more natural disasters in the coming months. There is a worrying report from the Bureau of Meteorology about flooding in the second half of 2022 (and) we are obviously concerned about the wildfire seasons.”

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He said he was concerned that a report indicating major changes will take place “is being buried by the NSW government”.

Repurchase and land exchange

The prime minister has vowed to publish the report, led by former police commissioner Mick Fuller and chief scientist Mary O’Kane, but has not yet done so.

It is the same report that will reportedly recommend flood victims to have their homes in flood-prone areas bought by the government or to exchange land.

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Dominic Perrottet examines flood damage during the latest massive flood. Photo: Getty

Nine and News Corp said on Saturday that buybacks and land swaps would be part of a $3 billion response to the deadly flooding of the Northern Rivers, as recommended in the report.

The flood response from the state and federal government has been criticized, including for taking too long to reach the victims and provide follow-up care.

On Friday, victims of the more recent June-July floods were given access to housing benefits and funds to help with repairs.

-MONKEY

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