26 September 2023

New Authority takes charge of disasters

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A new Authority dedicated to disaster preparedness, recovery and reconstruction from natural emergencies is to be established as a statutory body reporting to the Minister for Planning.

Announced by the Minister for Planning, Anthony Roberts, the establishment of the NSW Reconstruction Authority was a key recommendation of the recent independent Flood Inquiry.

Mr Roberts said the Authority would have the responsibility and power to facilitate the protection, recovery, and reconstruction of affected communities following a natural disaster.

“The Authority will implement mitigation measures against the impact of potential disasters, and improve the resilience and adaptation of communities moving forward,” Mr Roberts said.

“Modelled off the Queensland Reconstruction Authority, it will ensure NSW is as prepared as we can be to tackle disaster mitigation and recovery head on.”

Minister for Emergency Services and Resilience, Steph Cooke said the Reconstruction Authority would help communities be better prepared when natural disasters hit.

“Our emergency services organisations continue to lead the response to natural disasters, with the new Reconstruction Authority focusing on the crucial tasks of long-term rebuilding and risk mitigation,” Ms Cooke said.

She said the Authority would also be responsible for developing a State disaster mitigation plan and material to guide councils to prepare adaptation plans; and ensuring development needed to prevent or recover from a natural disaster could be delivered quickly.

Ms Cooke said the Northern Rivers Reconstruction Corporation would continue its work to roll out the Resilient Homes Program, rebuilding communities within the Byron, Clarence Valley, Lismore, Richmond Valley, Tweed and Kyogle, before being transitioned into the NSW Reconstruction Authority.

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