New Cyclone Recovery Law Streamlines Process

  • Hon Grant Robertson
  • Hon Kieran McAnulty

The Government is introducing the Severe Weather Emergency Legislation Bill to ensure the recovery and rebuild from Cyclone Gabrielle is streamlined and efficient with unnecessary red tape removed.

The legislation is similar to legislation passed following the Christchurch and Kaikōura earthquakes that modifies existing legislation in order to remove constraints on recovery.

“The recovery phase needs to be timely and efficient, it should not constrained,” Kieran McAnulty said.

“Previous emergencies like the Canterbury and Kaikōura earthquakes have required urgent legislation to remove or modify existing legislative constraints to support recovery. This bill is a similar response.

“The urgent changes will help facilitate the initial stages of the recovery and provide legal certainty where needed.

“The legislation also removes unnecessary red tape. For example extending the period for a food business to renew its registration will mean that it can continue operating post the Cyclone without impractical administrative deadlines to contend with.

“It’s important we enable communities to recover as quickly as possible after extreme weather events. These amendments will add certainty for businesses, help ensure food security by facilitating affected businesses to remain open throughout this uncertain period and help local authorities make emergency repairs,” Kieran McAnulty said.

“A month on from the national state of emergency being declared, we are moving away from the emergency response into the recovery phase,” Grant Robertson said.

“We have worked alongside communities as we respond to this major event. We have put in place a taskforce, led by Sir Brian Roche, which will ensure the recovery is also locally led and supported by central government.

“We have also established a Cyclone Recovery Unit in the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet to coordinate the work at a central government level.

“We are only just at the start of the recovery from these devastating weather events. While we have already provided significant resources through the response – affected regions should rest assured that the Government will continue to work closely with them as the rebuild and recovery begins in earnest,” Grant Robertson said.

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