Delays, rorts found in flood recovery audit
THE MASSIVE rebuild after the 2010-11 Queensland floods was beset by delays and about $100 million in cost over-runs, a national audit has confirmed.
A review of the recovery efforts, focused on works by the state's Department of Transport and Main Roads, found "potential reductions" in spending totalling about $100 million.
The Australian National Audit Office's "value for money" review of reconstruction efforts confirmed the initial bill for rebuilding after the floods reached at least $7 billion.
But Queensland Community Recovery Minister David Crisafulli said the figures reflected estimates, not the actual cost of rebuilding.
He said it focused on issues during the previous government's tenure, and the Newman Government had since "tightened Labor's procedures" to reflect the final costs of work.
"The best indication of Queensland's new approach to recovery is the fact that in 2011, it took Bundaberg Council 18 months to get $25 million worth of work out to market. This year, it was almost $40 million in four months," he said.
"As the disaster was unfolding, we put people on the ground immediately to help councils assess the damage.
"This sped up the process and improved the accuracy of the assessments compared to previous events."
The report also found a "common" claim by State Government agencies to "replace assets that were in poor condition prior to the disaster events", due to a lack of routine maintenance or "normal wear and tear".
A spokesman for the Department of Main Roads said the department "always ensure we repair roads properly".
"It's usual practice that the cost will be reconciled and the state will be reimbursed for what's eligible, and will pay for what's not," he said.