News State Western Australia News Government yet to implement key Keelty report recommendation

Government yet to implement key Keelty report recommendation

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The Western Australian Government is yet to draft legislation to implement a key recommendation of the Keelty report on the 2011 Kelmscott-Roleystone fire, which destroyed 71 homes.

The report recommended the WA Planning Commission take on responsibility for declaring bushfire prone areas and urgently assess them.

It is understood that could potentially restrict urban development in high fire risk areas or allow it on the basis that certain safety conditions are imposed.

Opposition emergency services spokeswoman Margaret Quirk says the Government is dragging its heels on the legislation and lives could be at risk.

“We’re looking at things like for example access roads, obviously in an emergency there needs to be more than one way of getting out of an area if it’s subject to bushfire,” she said.

“It may have an effect on property prices, there also may be land, which frankly won’t be developed at all, which might have commercial implications so maybe there is a fear or an apprehension that some commercial interests may be affected, but if they don’t do it some lives might be affected.”

Planning Minister John Day says significant work has been undertaken on the matter and a decision will soon be made.