SES Volunteers Association of Western Australia (Incorporated)

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05/12/2011 – New Emergency Services Minister

WA Premier Colin Barnett has dumped his Emergency Services Minister in the wake of the Margaret River bushfire which destroyed more than 40 properties.

Rob Johnson will be replaced by Transport Minister Troy Buswell.  Mr Barnett has revealed the change while announcing former Federal Police commissioner Mick Keelty will head the inquiry into the fire.  A prescribed burn by the Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC) was responsible for the blaze.  Mr Barnett says Mr Keelty will head to Margaret River on Sunday.

The inquiry will have similar powers to a royal commission.  The Premier says Mr Keelty is well placed to conduct the review given his background and experience from his inquiry into February’s Perth Hills bushfire.  Mr Keelty will report to the Public Sector Commissioner by late January.  Meanwhile, Mr Barnett says the portfolio change is the extent of his reshuffle.

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