Emergency plans cross borders

A SHARED Local Government Emergency Management Services Memorandum of Understanding is crossing municipal borders.

The City of Greater Bendigo, Campaspe Shire, Loddon Shire and Mount Alexander Shire have signed an agreement to work together to effectively plan for emergency events across the municipalities.

The Shared Local Government Emergency Management Services Memorandum of Understanding was signed on November 25 and outlines how each council will develop and implement sustainable, standard emergency management processes.

Cluster Emergency Management Pilot Project Manager Julien Harrison-Rogers said the pilot would focus on prevention, preparedness, response, relief and recovery preparations across municipal boundaries.

“This will enable the pilot councils to work together to provide improved services for affected residents before, during and after emergency events,” Mr Harrison-Rogers said.

“The MOU also allows for a more consistent approach to emergency management across the municipalities and expands the availability of specialist skills, knowledge and resources.”

The pilot program is in place for the next 16 months.

City of Greater Bendigo chief executive Craig Niemann said the signed MOU highlighted each council's willingness to work together to build central Victoria’s resilience in an emergency.

“The agreement is a great outcome that will also identify and capitalise on opportunities to avoid duplication, reduce costs and improve the efficiency of emergency management protocols across the participating municipalities,” Mr Niemann said.

“For example, in the event of an emergency in Greater Bendigo, a roster can be developed that will allow staff from the various other pilot councils to provide ongoing support.

“The MOU will also include an assessment of physical assets, like the location and layout of each municipality’s relief centres, to ensure they will all operate in a similar way and can be ready at any time.”

The project  for councils was initiated by the Municipal Association of Victoria.

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