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Inquiry into the 2019-20 Victorian fire season: phase 2

Progress and effectiveness of Victoria’s immediate relief and recovery arrangements
Bushfire prevention Climate change Bushfires Emergency services Environmental management Victoria

On 14 January 2020 the Honourable Daniel Andrews MP, Premier of Victoria announced an independent Inquiry into the 2019–20 Victorian fire season (the Inquiry). The Honourable Lisa Neville MP, Minister for Police and Emergency Services (the minister) formally requested the Inspector-General for Emergency Management (IGEM) conduct the Inquiry, and its Terms of Reference were finalised shortly thereafter.

This Inquiry has been conducted in two phases spanning 18 months: Phase 1 focused on sector and community preparedness and response, and Phase 2 – this report – focused on emergency relief and recovery arrangements.

The Phase 1 Inquiry Report was delivered to government on 31 July 2020 and was tabled by leave in Parliament on 18 September 2020. On 14 October 2020 government responded to the Phase 1 Inquiry Report, accepting all 17 recommendations. In addition, government also released and responded to IGEM’s Review of 10 years of reform in Victoria's emergency management sector (10 Year Review), accepting all five recommendations which are relevant to the findings of the Inquiry and are referenced throughout the Phase 1 Inquiry Report.

In Phase 2 of the Inquiry IGEM has evaluated the relief and recovery efforts activated before, during and after the fires. IGEM makes a series of observations and findings related to both relief and recovery, and proposes 15 recommendations to government.

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