Restructure plans for Bushfires NT

Restructure plans for Bushfires NT

04 April 2013

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Australia —  Major changes afoot for Bushfires NT with the director resigning and the Government announcing a review of the Bushfires Act 1980.

The Bushfires Council held its 105th annual meeting yesterday in Darwin which discussed the review and other matters.

Following a proposed restructure, it’s expected Bushfires NT will move from the Department of Land Resource Management to sit alongside Police, Fire and Emergency Services.

The departure of director Mick Ayre is another blow to the organisation which has long been fighting for more money to support its large network of volunteer firies.

Chairman Paul Blore says despite the review being announced, there’s still no assurances of more resources being allocated to the group.

“We’re still waiting and hoping that we can get some really positive funding and resources from government.

“We still have the same problems we had with the previous government, I suppose, until the Ministers find their feet,” he said.

He says there is support from within the Bushfires Council to embrace a restructure.

“Maybe it is time for change. At the moment we’re sort of dangling out on our own little branch.

“We need to have our own identity so we can be recognised for the work that we do out there.

“We look after over 98 per cent of the Territory for bushfires,” he said.

Outgoing director of Bushfires NT Mick Ayre says he has resigned for personal reasons and it is not related to the review announced by the NT Government.

“I have to say I’m extremely disappointed that I’m leaving earlier than I was intending but I’m leaving behind a very, very good organisation,” he said.

He says there are many potential benefits from the proposed restructure of the group.

“We may be working closer with the other emergency response agencies in government and in the private sector.

“That can only be a good thing as we would be able share resources and perhaps create some new efficiencies.”

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