16 April 2011

Ipswich CEO granted special powers to speed up flood recovery process

Ipswich City Council Media Release

15 April 2011

IPSWICH City Council's chief executive officer will be able to approve flood recovery works up to $5 million (excluding GST), speeding up processing and approval times.

All flood recovery works need to be completed by 30 June 2013 to be eligible for funding from the State and Federal Governments through the National Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA).

City Management and Finance Committee Chairperson Mayor Paul Pisasale said the special powers of delegation mean the CEO will be able to approve works eligible under the NDRRA program. The CEO will work with the Flood Recovery Working Group to decide individual contracts.

Currently all contracts greater that $1.5 million require approval by council, which can take between 80-120 days for a signed contract to be completed. The new delegation powers will mean the CEO can approve flood recovery works contracts up to $5 million, excluding GST, and will cut the time taken to between one and seven weeks.

Cr Pisasale said speeding up the flood recovery process was essential and the new powers granted to the CEO would help expedite approvals and fix public infrastructure sooner.

"Repairs to public infrastructure started at the same time as the flood clean-up, and while major repairs have been completed in the worst hit areas, more repairs are needed," Cr Pisasale said.

"These priority works include repairs to community facilities, which are heavily relied upon by sporting, cultural and community groups. Fixing the city's damaged infrastructure will go a long way towards getting life back to normal and lessening the grief and visual reminded of the flood."

Cr Pisasale said the CEO would be granted these approval powers until 30 June 2013 or until all flood recovery works have been completed.

Roads and drainage repairs are estimated to total $54 million, while the final damage bill to public infrastructure could reach $120 million. NDRRA works are being administered locally by the Queensland Reconstruction Authority.

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