The Palaszczuk Government has demanded the Federal Government stop dithering over the release of its new model for disaster relief funding.
Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning Cameron Dick said the current funding arrangements expired on 30 June.
“It is unacceptable that with just six weeks remaining before new funding arrangements are due to come into effect, Queenslanders and their local governments are still waiting to hear what these will be and how they will work,” Mr Dick said.
“Every Australian state, including Queensland, is being asked to prepare for the introduction of a new disaster relief funding model without the courtesy of clear advice about the requirements they will be expected to meet,” Mr Dick said.
“The Federal Government’s disaster funding reform process has been underway for the past three years.
“In good faith, Queensland has worked with the Federal Government to enable the timely delivery of the new funding arrangements.
“This has been in the face of multiple disasters, including Severe Tropical Cyclone Debbie last year and more recently the activation of 43 local councils for natural disaster assistance following a late season of cyclonic activity and severe flooding.
“Yet just six weeks before new arrangements are due to begin, the Federal Government still hasn’t provided a final funding model for states to consider,” he said.
“As Australia’s most disaster-impacted state, Queensland is particularly interested in maintaining confidence in national disaster funding arrangements within our local communities.
“More than half of Queensland’s local governments are currently recovering from natural disasters, and for them especially the delay in providing certainty around future funding arrangements is unacceptable.
“I have today again written to the Federal Minister responsible for disaster relief funding, Angus Taylor, repeating my request to him to support transitional arrangements so that the new funding model can be properly implemented,” Mr Dick said.
“Experience has shown us the next natural disaster could be just around the corner.
“The Federal Government needs to stop dithering and immediately provide Queensland with details of the funding model it plans to implement.
“Our vulnerable communities deserve better than how the Federal Government is treating them at present,” Mr Dick said.
Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning
The Honourable Cameron Dick