Minister to focus on community recovery and resilience

Published Friday, 01 February, 2013 at 11:10 AM

The Honourable Campbell Newman

Premier Campbell Newman today announced David Crisafulli would become Minister for Local Government, Community Recovery and Resilience as the State Government moved to do all it could to prevent and mitigate the impact of natural disasters in the future.

Mr Newman said while the clear priority right now was ensuring all those affected by the floods got back on their feet, the long term focus of all levels of Government must shift to minimising the flood impact on towns and vital infrastructure, not just constant repair jobs.

“We simply cannot accept that so many Queensland communities need to be flooded every couple of years, and we must look at ways to build up our resilience to natural disasters or ease the impacts in those areas where we can’t put an end to the pain,” Mr Newman said.

“If we are going to be successful, every level of Government and the private sector need to play their part in this massive and costly task.”

Mr Newman said as part of the changes, Mr Crisafulli would also take charge of the Queensland Reconstruction Authority and work in partnership with local communities to build up Queensland’s resilience to natural disasters.

“Mr Crisafulli has worked hard since becoming Local Government Minister to forge strong links with local communities by visiting and meeting with every single council across the state,” he said.

“I have every confidence Mr Crisafulli will work with communities at the grass roots level to not only recover from this latest disaster but also to look at simple, practical, cost effective and local solutions to minimise the impact of future disasters.

“My Government has already shown we are willing to play our part by putting $40 million over four years into the Floodplain Security Scheme and we’ve put a billion dollars on the table towards fixing the Bruce Highway even though it’s a Federal Government road.

“The cost of expanding mitigation projects state-wide will be high, but a failure to act and the cost of just ‘repairing’ damaged infrastructure  year in year out will be much higher.

“I am keen to hear from the community about what they want and what can be delivered, and have an open mind to all options including levees, flood mitigation dams and even the relocation of parts of communities.

“Building up Queensland’s resilience to natural disasters will be a monumental task, but it is challenge we can’t afford to ignore any longer.”

[ENDS] 1 February 2013                                        

Media contact: Premier’s office 3224 4500