State Emergency and Rescue Management Act 1989 No 165
Current version for 27 November 2013 to date (accessed 23 November 2014 at 16:49)
Part 2Division 1

Division 1 Emergency management at State level

Subdivision 1 The Minister and the State Disasters Council

10   Minister

(1)  The Minister is responsible for:
(a)  ensuring that adequate measures are taken by government agencies to prevent, prepare for, respond to and assist recovery from emergencies, and
(b)  co-ordinating the activities of government agencies in taking those measures, and
(c)  approving the State Emergency Management Plan or any alterations to the State Emergency Management Plan.
(2)  In discharging any one or more of those responsibilities, the Minister may, on any occasion that the Minister thinks appropriate, call meetings of, consult with, and have regard to the advice of, the State Disasters Council.
(3)  The following are, in the exercise of their functions under this Act, subject to the control and direction of the Minister:
(a)  the State Emergency Management Committee,
(b)  the State Emergency Operations Controller,
(c)  the State Emergency Recovery Controller.
(4)  The Minister may delegate to the State Emergency Operations Controller, State Emergency Recovery Controller or other person the Minister’s functions under this Act, other than:
(a)  the Minister’s functions under this section, and
(b)  this power of delegation.

11   State Disasters Council

(1)  There is established by this Act a State Disasters Council.
(2)  The function of the Council is to advise the Minister on all matters relating to the prevention of, preparation for, response to and recovery from emergencies (including the co-ordination of the activities of government and non-government agencies in connection with those matters).
(3)  The Council is to consist of:
(a)  the Minister, who is to be the Chairperson of the Council, and
(b)  the State Emergency Operations Controller, and
(b1)  (Repealed)
(b2)  the State Emergency Recovery Controller, and
(c)  representatives of such relevant government and non-government agencies as the Minister may from time to time determine.
(4)  The representative of a government agency is to be nominated by the Minister responsible for the agency and the representative of a non-government agency is to be nominated by the agency.
(4A)  The Minister may, but is not required to, appoint the person holding office as the Chairperson of the State Emergency Management Committee as a member of the State Disasters Council.
(5)  Schedule 2 has effect with respect to the members and procedure of the Council.

Subdivision 2 The State Emergency Management Plan

12   State Emergency Management Plan

(1)  There is to be a State Emergency Management Plan.
(2)  The object of the State Emergency Management Plan is to ensure the co-ordinated response to emergencies by all agencies having responsibilities and functions in emergencies.
(3)  The State Emergency Management Plan is to:
(a)  identify, in relation to each different form of emergency, the combat agency primarily responsible for controlling the response to the emergency, and
(b)  provide for the co-ordination of the activities of other agencies in support of a combat agency in the event of an emergency, and
(c)  specify the tasks to be performed by all agencies in the event of an emergency, and
(d)  specify the responsibilities of the Minister, the State, Regional or Local Emergency Operations Controller and the State Emergency Recovery Controller.
(4)  As soon as practicable after the Minister approves the State Emergency Management Plan or any alterations to the State Emergency Management Plan, the Chief Executive, Emergency Services must:
(a)  publish (in such manner as the Chief Executive determines) a copy of the State Emergency Management Plan or the alterations to the State Emergency Management Plan, and
(b)  forward a copy of the State Emergency Management Plan or the alterations to the State Emergency Management Plan to each agency to which the State Emergency Management Plan relates.

13   Operation of State Emergency Management Plan

(1)  The relevant provisions of the State Emergency Management Plan have effect in the event of an emergency.
(2)  The State Emergency Management Plan has effect in the event of an emergency whether or not a state of emergency has been declared.
(3)  Agencies are authorised to undertake their responsibilities and functions under the State Emergency Management Plan in the event of an emergency. Government agencies may be required to do so by the Minister.
(4)  Any question concerning the application or operation of the State Emergency Management Plan may be referred to and determined by the Minister.
(5)  This section does not authorise or require any act or omission that is inconsistent with this or any other Act.

Subdivision 3 The State Emergency Management Committee

14   State Emergency Management Committee

(1)  There is established by this Act a State Emergency Management Committee.
(2)  The Committee is to consist of:
(a)  the State Emergency Operations Controller, and
(a1)  the State Emergency Recovery Controller, and
(b)  representatives of such relevant government and non-government agencies as the Minister may from time to time determine, and
(c)  such other persons as may be nominated by the Minister from time to time.
(2A)  One of the members of the Committee is to be appointed by the Minister as the Chairperson of the Committee.
(3)  The representative of a non-government agency is to be nominated by the Minister and the representative of a government agency is to be nominated by the Minister responsible for the agency.
(4)  The persons so nominated are to be persons who have authority to plan and commit their agencies’ resources in relation to the response and recovery stages of an emergency.
(5)  Schedule 2 has effect with respect to the members and procedure of the State Emergency Management Committee.

15   Functions of State Emergency Management Committee

The State Emergency Management Committee has the following functions:
(a)  to review, monitor and advise the Minister on the adequacy of the provisions of this Act relating to emergency management,
(b)  to provide strategic policy advice to the Minister in relation to emergency management,
(c)  to review, monitor and develop emergency management policy and practice at a State level and to disseminate information in relation to any such policy and practice,
(d)  to review the State Emergency Management Plan and to recommend alterations to it,
(e)  to endorse any subplans or supporting plans established under the State Emergency Management Plan,
(f)  to facilitate strategic State level emergency management capability through inter-agency co-ordination, co-operation and information sharing arrangements,
(g)  such other functions as are conferred or imposed on the Committee by or under this Act or as are related to this Act and assigned to the Committee from time to time by the Minister.

16   Functional area sub-committees of State Emergency Management Committee

(1)  The State Emergency Management Committee is required to establish such sub-committees as the Minister directs in connection with functional areas.
(2)  A sub-committee established for a functional area is to co-ordinate the provision of functional area support for activities carried out to prevent, prepare for, respond to or recover from an emergency.

17   Annual report by State Emergency Management Committee

(1)  As soon as practicable after 30 June, but on or before 31 December in each year, the Chief Executive, Emergency Services is to provide the Minister with a report approved by the State Emergency Management Committee on the work and activities of the Committee for the 12 months ending on 30 June in that year.
(2)  The Minister is to lay any such report or cause it to be laid before both Houses of Parliament as soon as practicable after receiving the report.

Subdivision 4 The State Emergency Operations Controller

18   State Emergency Operations Controller and Deputy

(1)  There is to be a State Emergency Operations Controller and a Deputy State Emergency Operations Controller.
(2)  The office of the State Emergency Operations Controller is to be held by:
(a)  the Commissioner of Police, or
(b)  if the Governor, on the recommendation of the Minister, designates a position in the NSW Police Force Senior Executive Service as the position of State Emergency Operations Controller—the person for the time being holding or acting in that position.
(3)  The office of the Deputy State Emergency Operations Controller is to be held by the person for the time being holding or acting in a position in the NSW Police Force Senior Executive Service that is designated by the Governor, on the recommendation of the Minister, as the position of Deputy State Emergency Operations Controller.
(4)  The Minister is to consult with the Minister for Police before making a recommendation under subsection (2) or (3).
(5)  During the absence or a vacancy in the office of the State Emergency Operations Controller, the Deputy State Emergency Operations Controller has all the functions of the State Emergency Operations Controller.

19   Responsibility and functions of State Emergency Operations Controller

(1)  The State Emergency Operations Controller is, subject to this section, responsible for controlling in accordance with this Act the response to an emergency:
(a)  that affects more than one region, or
(b)  for which the State Emergency Operations Controller assumes responsibility.
(1A)  The State Emergency Operations Controller is not responsible for controlling the response to an emergency if there is a single combat agency primarily responsible under the State Emergency Management Plan for controlling the response to the emergency, unless the Controller assumes that responsibility in accordance with subsection (1B).
(1B)  The State Emergency Operations Controller may assume responsibility for controlling the response to an emergency from the combat agency primarily so responsible under the State Emergency Management Plan if:
(a)  the Controller is satisfied that it is necessary to do so in the particular circumstances of the case, and
(b)  the combat agency has requested that the Controller assume, or has agreed to the Controller assuming, that responsibility or, in the case of any disagreement on the matter, the Minister has directed the Controller to do so.
(2)  The State Emergency Operations Controller may, if responsible for controlling the response to an emergency:
(a)  issue directions to agencies who have functions in connection with responses to the emergency, and
(b)  appoint an officer of an agency to have overall control of particular activities in response to the emergency where a number of agencies are involved and those agencies do not agree on the matter.
(2A)  The State Emergency Operations Controller may, at the request of the combat agency that is primarily responsible for controlling the response to an emergency, carry out such functions as may be specified by the agency for the purposes of controlling the response to the emergency.
(3)  The functions of the State Emergency Operations Controller may be exercised without the need for a declaration of a state of emergency, but during a state of emergency the exercise of those functions is subject to Division 4.

20   State emergency operations centre

(1)  The State Emergency Operations Controller is to establish and control a State emergency operations centre.
(2)  The State emergency operations centre is to have:
(a)  communication facilities for independent control and co-ordination of regions, and
(b)  discrete communication facilities with heads of emergency services organisations and functional areas, and
(c)  independent communications with the public broadcasting media network, and
(d)  independent media information facilities.
(3)  (Repealed)

Subdivision 5 The State Emergency Recovery Controller

20A   State Emergency Recovery Controller and Deputy

(1)  There is to be a State Emergency Recovery Controller and a Deputy State Emergency Recovery Controller.
(2)  The office of the State Emergency Recovery Controller is to be held by the person for the time being holding or acting in the position of the Chief Executive, Emergency Services.
(3)  The office of the Deputy State Emergency Recovery Controller is to be held by the person for the time being holding or acting in a senior position in the Government Service that is designated by the Minister as the Deputy State Emergency Recovery Controller.
(4)  During the absence or a vacancy in the office of the State Emergency Recovery Controller, the Deputy State Emergency Recovery Controller has all of the functions of the State Emergency Recovery Controller.
(5)  A senior position in the Government Service is:
(a)  a position of senior executive officer (within the meaning of the Public Sector Employment and Management Act 2002), or
(b)  a position in the Public Service for which the rate of salary or wages payable to the person exceeds the maximum rate payable for Grade 12, Administrative and Clerical Division, of the Public Service.

20B   Responsibility and functions of State Emergency Recovery Controller

(1)  The State Emergency Recovery Controller is, subject to this section, responsible for controlling in accordance with this Act the recovery from an emergency:
(a)  that affects more than one region, or
(b)  for which the State Emergency Recovery Controller assumes responsibility.
(2)  The State Emergency Recovery Controller is not responsible for controlling the recovery from an emergency if there is a single recovery agency primarily responsible under the State Emergency Management Plan for controlling the recovery from the emergency, unless the Controller assumes that responsibility in accordance with subsection (3).
(3)  The State Emergency Recovery Controller may assume responsibility for controlling the recovery from an emergency from the recovery agency primarily so responsible under the State Emergency Management Plan if:
(a)  the Controller is satisfied that it is necessary to do so in the particular circumstances of the case, and
(b)  the recovery agency has requested that the Controller assume, or has agreed to the Controller assuming, that responsibility or, in the case of any disagreement on the matter, the Minister has directed the Controller to do so.
(4)  The State Emergency Recovery Controller may, if responsible for controlling the recovery from an emergency:
(a)  issue directions to agencies who have functions in connection with recovery from an emergency, and
(b)  appoint an officer of an agency to have overall control of particular activities in recovery from an emergency where a number of agencies are involved and those agencies do not agree on the matter.
(5)  The State Emergency Recovery Controller may assist a recovery agency that is primarily responsible for controlling the recovery from an emergency in carrying out that responsibility.
(6)  The functions of the State Emergency Recovery Controller may be exercised without the need for a declaration of a state of emergency.
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