National drought boss appointed to guide Federal Government
ONE man is now responsible for the national response to drought and floods, under a new appointment from the Federal Government
Shane L Stone AC QC will lead a new agency, the National Drought and North Queensland Flood Response and Recovery Agency, and be responsible for oversight of the Federal Government’s support to communities undergoing drought hardship.
Minister for Drought David Littleproud said the agency would put staff in regional and rural areas to deliver a response as circumstances change.
“The agency’s first job will be to put boots on the ground in affected communities,” Mr Littleproud said.
“This is a direct line between communities and government so we can better respond to the drought.
“They will let us know how our programs are working and where needs have changed.
“As the drought steps up, so does our response – this will make that response quicker.
“This is another step to make sure government assistance is delivered as needs arise.”
The agency will also oversee the continuing response and recovery from February’s monsoon and flood in North Queensland.
“I am pleased Mr Stone had accepted the position of Co-ordinator-General for this agency,” Mr Littleproud said.
“Mr Stone has a track record with a ‘boots on the ground’ approach, and his agency will focus on a locally led, locally understood and locally implemented strategy.
“We will stand shoulder to shoulder with drought and disaster-hit communities from beginning to end and this agency is part of that.”