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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 8 Hansard (12 August) . .

Page.. 2314..

MR CORBELL: I thank Dr Bourke for the supplementary. The government is investing considerable sums in this year's budget to improve and maintain the capability and operability of our communications systems. I have mentioned previously, in my earlier answer, the TRN radio network, a critical communications network for the ESA, and voice and data communications through that network. The upgrades to the microwave ring arrangements as part of the TRN will contribute towards ensuring that it stays up to date, reliable, modern and meeting the needs of our emergency services into the future. The government is also, of course, continuing with investments in terms of upgrade of Centracom technology as part of the 000 ComCen arrangements. Again, that is about making sure we have the investments in place to maintain the contemporary nature of facilities and capability in these critical voice and emergency communications aspects of the Emergency Services Agency.

MADAM SPEAKER: Supplementary question, Mr Coe.

MR COE: Minister, do you stand by advice given by ESA that the entire Riverview development will be serviced from the Charnwood station?

MR CORBELL: My understanding is that that is the assessment at this time. Obviously, the Riverview proposal is subject to a series of assessments as it goes through preliminary and early development assessment processes. Obviously, there is still significant work to be done in relation to Riverview. Therefore, those assessments will be ongoing by our emergency services as the details of that proposal become both clearer and more defined over time as the proponents work through the details of their proposal.


MS LAWDER: My question is for the Minister for Territory and Municipal Services. Minister, in the aftermath of the 2003 fires the fire management unit was established within TAMS. Given that it is predicted that we are moving into an El Nino weather pattern, with its attendant increased potential for bushfire danger, what is the status of the fire management unit and what is its FTE staff?

MR RATTENBURY: I thank Ms Lawder for the question. Of course, as Ms Lawder and other members of the Assembly undoubtedly know, TAMS operate each season a bushfire operational plan, which is nested under the strategic bushfire management plan. TAMS have a BOP each season and they are currently in the process of moving to finalise the implementation of this year's plan.

There are a range of measures that have been put in place. I am happy to provide Ms Lawder with the full details. But I am advised that there is sufficient capability. I have sought advice on this recently and there are no issues for TAMS in rolling out the necessary steps that need to be taken this season. As members may be aware, not all of the elements of the bushfire operational plan were achieved last season. There is always an issue there of some matters not being done. Those that were not achieved last season will be brought forward as priorities into this season. So there is a rolling program there to make sure that the ACT is ready for the bushfire season.

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