NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet has unveiled record $132 million in funding for the state emergency service to help “strengthen frontline services across the state”.
Prime Minister Dominic Perrottet has announced that the government will invest a record $132.7 million in the New South Wales state emergency service.
The additional investment, which includes more than $50 million to upgrade 18 critical priority unit facilities across the state, will fund SES infrastructure, resources and personnel.
Mr. Perrottet said it would also be used to create two new zones through the division of the West and North zones.
“Recent flooding has caused widespread devastation across the state, which is why it’s so important to ensure SES has the resources it needs to respond to natural disasters of this magnitude,” he said. he said on Monday.
“As part of this $132.7 million investment, the New South Wales Government is strengthening the SES presence in Northern Rivers, with a new Incident Control Center to be constructed and staffed at Lismore.
“The NSW Government is committed to investing in communities to strengthen frontline services across the state.”
Deputy Prime Minister Paul Toole said the record investment would help ensure a more focused and faster response in times of crisis.
“The new facilities and additional staff will help strengthen SES’s ability to deal with severe weather events, especially in flood-prone areas like the rivers in the North, and ensure these communities are better prepared,” said Mr. Toole.
“But this funding will also strengthen SES’s presence across New South Wales by building on our track record of investing in this vital service run primarily by the community, for the community.”
SES Commissioner Carlene York welcomed the government’s initiative, adding that it would help support those who volunteer for emergency response teams.
“This investment in the SES strengthens our support for our greatest asset, our volunteers, and enables us to provide the lifesaving assistance that NSW communities need to protect life and property in the state,” said the Commissioner York.
The investment will be spread over five different areas, including $58.7 million to upgrade 18 critical priority units, $43 million to split the existing north area into two new areas and split the existing west area into two new areas .
$11.7 million will also be spent on establishing zone headquarters in the two new zones with Level 3 incident control center capabilities and $18 million to upgrade existing zone headquarters to level 3 incident control centers.
An additional $1.3 million will be used to develop an installation strategy and complete more detailed business cases to address the remaining recommendations from the 2021 independent review.
The investment comes as the Perrottet government prioritizes emergency services after an additional $200 million was set aside on Sunday for the rural fire service.
Residents of Northern Rivers will welcome the investment as the area was hit by two floods in February and March, hundreds of people lost their homes and businesses and many people are still displaced.
The SES has been criticized for delays in response times as it was inundated with calls during the Lismore floods.
Some residents were forced to sit on their roofs as people used their boats to pick up stranded residents.