Emergency Services | August 18, 2017

Report recommends abandoning fire services split

A Parliamentary Committee has recommended the Department of Premier and Cabinet be referred for investigation for interfering in an inquiry into Victoria’s fire services.

The Legislative Council Fire Services Bill Select Committee report, which was handed down on Friday, also recommended the Andrews Labor Government’s fire services Bill is withdrawn from parliament.

The Nationals Member for Lowan Emma Kealy MP said the report clearly stated Daniel Andrews had failed to properly consult emergency service organisations, staff and volunteers on its plan to split the Country Fire Authority.

“Our CFA brigades should be focussing on preparing for the fire season, not Daniel Andrews’ plans to tear our fire services apart,” Ms Kealy said.

“A key question this report raises is whether Daniel Andrews, his office or members of his government knew of or directed the Department of Premier and Cabinet to politically interfere with the Committee,” she said.

The Committee said the Andrews Labor Government’s consultation on the Bill had been “inadequate” and “in the case of consultation with volunteers, in contravention of the CFA Act”.

Ms Kealy said Daniel Andrews had treated CFA volunteers with contempt throughout the whole process.

“Daniel Andrews claims to be listening to our Lowan communities, but he’s stone deaf when community concerns don’t suit his own agenda.

“Daniel Andrews is playing politics with the safety of Victorians. The Liberal Nationals will protect those who protect us,” she said.


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