John Brumby has only nine parliamentary sitting days left before the state election to take the necessary steps to appoint a bushfires monitor, Shadow Minister for Bushfire Response and Leader of The Nationals Peter Ryan said today.
“The Victorian Liberal Nationals Coalition strongly supports the Bushfires Royal Commission’s recommendation that an independent monitor or the Auditor-General be appointed to assess progress with implementing the Commission’s recommendations and report back to the Parliament by 31 July 2012,” Mr Ryan said.
“Although this reporting date is almost two years away, the bushfires monitor should be in place as soon as possible.
“John Brumby failed last week to seize the first possible parliamentary opportunity to introduce legislation to appoint an independent bushfires monitor and now he has only nine sitting days left to act before the November state election.”
Mr Ryan said the Coalition had already stated it would support legislation to appoint a monitor, so John Brumby had no excuse for delaying legislation.
“It is in the interests of all Victorians for John Brumby to stop procrastinating and introduce these laws so an independent monitor can keep the government honest and help prevent another tragedy like Black Saturday,” Mr Ryan said.
“In their recommendations, the Commissioners have reflected the Coalition’s view that years of warnings on bushfires were ignored and that the Brumby Government failed to fully implement a number of key recommendations from the Bushfires Royal Commission’s interim report.
“John Brumby has already indicated that he supports the concept of an independent bushfires monitor so there should be no further delay in the progression of this important legislation.”
Mr Ryan said the Bushfires Royal Commission underwent a thorough and exhaustive process in reaching its 67 recommendations.
“The Coalition supports all of the recommendations and we urge John Brumby to follow our lead, accept the recommendations, and act,” Mr Ryan said.
Peter Ryan MLA
Member for Gippsland South | Deputy Premier
Minister for State Development | Minister for Regional and Rural Development