Re­mote au­dits shed light on power and wa­ter prob­lems

Broome Advertiser - - News - Peter de Krui­jff

Power and wa­ter au­dits of es­sen­tial ser­vices in 10 re­mote Abo­rig­i­nal com­mu­ni­ties in the Kim­ber­ley and Pil­bara have be­gun.

The com­mu­ni­ties, some of the big­gest in the two re­gions, were iden­ti­fied as early sites for up­grades by the Re­gional Ser­vices Re­form Unit.

The unit was set up to iden­tify ser­vice is­sues fac­ing re­mote WA com­mu­ni­ties.

An RSRU spokes­woman said mu­nic­i­pal ser­vice au­dits would start at the sites later this year.

“The project will oc­cur in three stages: in­fra­struc­ture au­dits and plan­ning, up­grade work, and on­go­ing main­te­nance,” she said.

“The au­dits will in­form plan­ning by ex­am­in­ing the cur­rent state of the in­fra­struc­ture to help de­ter­mine what is needed to bring ba­sic ser­vices up to min­i­mum stan­dards in each com­mu­nity, with the up­grade work to be­gin in mid-2018.

“The Re­form Unit will con­tinue to con­sult with the com­mu­ni­ties re­gard­ing the au­dits, with lo­cal res­i­dents em­ployed as part of the au­dit process.”

The up­grades to the 10 com­mu­ni­ties were one of 10 pri­or­ity ac­tions out­lined by the RSRU last year.

Oth­ers have pro­gressed in great steps, such as the map­ping of gov­ern­ment-funded ser­vices in the North West, which is be­ing pre­pared for re­lease.

The unit has also es­tab­lished the Ku­nunurra In­ten­sive Fam­ily Sup­port Project ini­tia­tive, which fo­cuses on fam­i­lies with com­plex needs.

“Work­ing along­side Abo­rig­i­nal com­mu­nity-con­trolled or­gan­i­sa­tions, this ini­tia­tive has pro­vided co-or­di­nated ser­vices to de­liver bet­ter out­comes for fam­i­lies,” the RSRU spokes­woman said.

Work out of the $200 mil­lion North-West Abo­rig­i­nal Hous­ing Fund is also pro­gress­ing, with plan­ning un­der way for its first project in con­sul­ta­tion with the Bi­narri-binyja Yar­ra­woo Abo­rig­i­nal Cor­po­ra­tion.

An­other pri­or­ity ac­tion, the $25 mil­lion Kim­ber­ley Schools Project, has yet to roll out.

The three-year project was in­tended to roll out to three schools this year from the first se­mes­ter but has not been im­ple­mented in even one, with half the year now gone.

The RSRU spokes­woman said the team was work­ing on ma­te­ri­als and en­gage­ment.

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