The following Question Without Notice was asked by the Hon Dr Steve Thomas MLC and answered yesterday by the Hon Stephen Dawson MLC on behalf of the Emergency Services Minister, Hon Fran Logan MLA.
It is disappointing that the answer seemed to defend the use of ESL for artwork rather than accept the Association’s reasonable proposal to work toward finding another source of funding for art in Fire and Emergency Services buildings.
We understand the word games our system of Parliament encourages all sides of politics to play, but we also note the response given to parts 4-6 does not answer the questions asked.
Bushfire Centre of Excellence
Hon Dr STEVE THOMAS to the minister representing the Minister for Emergency Services:
I refer to the $18 million Bushfire Centre of Excellence now under construction in Nambeelup and funded by the emergency services levy.
(1) Does the government’s Percent for Art policy apply to the construction of the Bushfire Centre of Excellence?
(2) If yes to (1), what will the artwork budget be?
(3) What ESL moneys have been directed into artwork across the state under the Percent for Art policy in each of the last three years?
(4) Are there any requests from volunteer or career firefighting brigades across the state for equipment over the last three years that have been denied?
(5) If yes to (4), what is the total cost of those requests?
(6) Please list those requests for fire emergency equipment referred to in part (4) that were denied because they were determined to be not necessary.
Hon STEPHEN DAWSON replied:
I thank the honourable member for some notice of the question. The following answer has been provided to me by the Minister for Emergency Services. I note that this was answered on 6 February, so it is current to that date. I do not think it makes a difference; it is just so the honourable member is aware.
(1)–(2) Yes. The bipartisan state government Percent for Art scheme requires up to one per cent of the construction budget for new works to be expended on artworks. The scheme employs local Western Australians to deliver art for new public buildings, including fire stations. The artwork budget for the Bushfire Centre of Excellence has not been finalised.
(3) In 2017, it was nil. In 2018, it was estimated to be $65 000; however, artwork is integrated into the building designs and features. In 2019, it was nil.
(4)–(6) No requests from volunteer or career firefighting brigades have been denied as a result of the need to comply with the Percent for Art policy.