Australia Victoria's fire services to be overhauled

14:37  19 may  2017
14:37  19 may  2017 Source:   MSN

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VICTORIA'S CFA CARVE UP

* CFA to become a volunteer-only service

* Fire Rescue Victoria will replace the Metropolitan Fire Brigade with paid CFA firefighters forming part of the new organisation

* CFA volunteers and FSV will share 35 integrated stations while 1200 other volunteer brigades remain as they are

* FRV will be led by its own commissioner and be based on a NSW model

* An independent Fire District Review Panel will be established to review boundaries of fire services

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Victoria ' s fire services will be dramatically overhauled with Premier Daniel Andrews splitting volunteer and paid firefighters into two separate authorities. The move comes with serious political risk for Mr Andrews, who has already lost much political capital, and a minister

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* $100 million to be invested in CFA as part of reforms

* $56.2 million CFA support fund to strengthen recruitment and training

* Target to increase female firefighters in FRV from 100 to 400

* Reforms include 450 new firefighters that Labor promised at the election

* Uniforms and rebadging estimated to cost $5 million a year over the next few years

* Committee to oversee reforms chaired by Greg Mullins, who oversaw similar reforms in NSW

* Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission will work with the government on cultural reform during the restructure

COMMENTS ON THE PLAN

Emergency Services Minister James Merlino: "These changes will enshrine the CFA as a volunteer firefighting service under law and unite our career firefighters under one organisation."

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Premier Daniel Andrews: "If you go back and look at each of those reviews ... the reasons why we have made this change, are talked about page after page, report after report, year after year."

Volunteer Fire Brigades Victoria: "None of the reviews recommended breaking up the CFA."

United Firefighters Union: "The UFU has concerns regarding the government's proposal, and in particular its election commitments to the UFU and its members."

Opposition Leader Matthew Guy: "Where's the impetus to do this come from? Where's the report, the smoking gun that says the CFA isn't working?"

CFA chair Greg Smith: "It's important to reiterate the current role of volunteer brigades remains in place and this package will protect the important surge capacity provided by volunteers"

Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Right Commission: "We look forward to working with the Victorian Government to ensure that cultural reform of the agencies is prioritised throughout this restructure."

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