The Bega Valley Shire Council has been invited to present to the Bushfires Royal Commission this Wednesday.
It's believed to be joining neighbouring councils Eurobodalla and Snowy Monaro in making direct presentations to the Commission this week following written submissions in recent months over the "Black Summer" bushfires.
At its March meeting, BVSC presented its draft written submission to the Commission, with what it saw as its areas of strength and its needs when dealing with a disaster of this magnitude.
While BVSC acknowledged it had a level of preparedness for disasters, having experienced its share already with fires, floods and so on, a local plan "had been practiced, but not at a level to cover impacts across such a broad geographical area".
In its written submission BVSC applauds the professionalism and experience of the Rural Fire Service, but said it was not prepared for the scope of the summer's bushfires and was "severely stretched".
It calls for increased funding and resourcing for the NSW RFS, "particularly on the South East", as well as for a state-funded dedicated resource in each council area to support local emergency management teams.
That the NSW Fires Near Me App notifications ended at the border was also of particular concern, particularly given the resulting emergency threat posed by the Border Fire as it moved into the southern part of the shire after devastating Mallacoota and East Gippsland.
Among the solutions proposed by BVSC is a review of cross-border management in disaster situations, increased coordination between states and the Commonwealth, and a nationally consistent regime for improved community and agency preparedness.
Transport connectivity is also a key concern for BVSC. The Princes Hwy is not considered a "road of strategic importance" nationally, but its closure in both directions due to the fires - south-bound for six weeks - was certainly significant.
BVSC is calling for the Princes Hwy to be recognised as a road of national importance and adequately funded by both state and federal governments.
It also wants east-west transport corridors reviewed in light of disaster resilience strategies.
Other noted "solutions" in the BVSC submission are that a Canberra to Eden rail line be delivered, and that coastal travel and freight be a priority out of Eden and Twofold Bay.
The issue and effects of climate change is a common theme throughout the council submission. It remains to be seen what importance is placed on that in the Commission's final report to government.
The Royal Commission into National Natural Disaster Arrangements was established in February in response to the extreme bushfire season of 2019-20, which resulted in loss of life, property and wildlife and environmental destruction.
This week it has a particular focus on local government, with hearings from June 22-24 focusing on "the responsibilities of, and actions taken by, local governments in relation to preparation for, response to, and recovery from natural disasters". Last week covered hazard reduction, including cultural land management practices and the frustration of farmers with clearing laws.
Hearings are being conducted via online video chats with proceedings live streamed via the Commission's website.