Issued: 17 September 2015
Minister for Emergency Services David Elliott and Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter and Central Coast Scot MacDonald today thanked Brigadier Darren Naumann for his work as Regional Recovery Coordinator for the Hunter storms.
Brigadier Naumann has submitted his final report on the progress of recovery and made recommendations on strategies that worked well and improvements needed to assist future disaster events.
It comes as about 700 emergency services units who responded to the 31,000 calls and 21,000 requests for assistance during the storm emergency receive a certificate of appreciation signed by Premier Mike Baird and Mr Elliott.
"We are thankful for the Brigadier's swift, multi-faceted approach to coordinating the recovery process which included working closely with councils and the community to assess the impact of the storm and oversee the provision of services," Mr Elliott said.
Mr MacDonald will now take responsibility for issues relating to the recovery process and work with key agencies at a regional and local level.
"Brigadier Naumann brought focus and discipline to the Government's response. He immediately helped reassure the communities of the Hunter and Central Coast and his empathy and energy was appreciated by all agencies," Mr MacDonald said.
Brigadier Naumann said support from Government, non-Government groups, community volunteer organisations and individual volunteers was excellent and in some cases still going, such as in Dungog.
"The response from the emergency services was exceptional. It was clear many officials and volunteers went above and beyond what was expected," he said.
"The good work of Department of Primary Industries and Local Land Services needs to be acknowledged in working with primary producers to build resilience, as well as the contribution of other government agencies such as Family and Community Services, Roads and Maritime Services and councils during the recovery phase.
"I have enjoyed working with the good people of the Hunter and Central Coast and I have been inspired by the optimistic mindset brought to the recovery challenge."
The Government is now considering the report's recommendations.