In Law & Order

Tasmania Shadow Minister for Human Services Jacquie Petrusma

Arson Costing The Community Millions

Victor P Taffa

It’s clear that the Government’s approach to tackling deliberately lit housing fires is not working and the people of Ravenswood have had enough, according to Shadow Minister for Human Services Jacquie Petrusma.

“Communities across the state need confidence that the Government is doing everything it can to prevent these illegal and dangerous acts, but sadly there has been little to suggest this is the case.”

“We know this is not an isolated incident and acts of arson are extremely costly. At budget estimates this year, it was revealed that the Government had a $7.82 Million arson bill*, with an additional $3.3 Million* bill for malicious damage.”

“That’s millions of dollars in tax-payers money that should be putting a roof over the heads of vulnerable Tasmanians, instead this Minister’s inability to manage public housing is seeing millions in vital funding lost down the drain.”

* Hansard of Budget Estimates – 31 May 2012 (Figures are to March 31, 2012 ONLY):

CASSY O’CONNOR: “In terms of the total number of arson-related incidents in Tasmania, I will break this down by region and make a comparison across the two years. This is arson losses by area, not all properties that were destroyed by arson but properties that have been subject to an arson attack In the south-east, 30 incidents; south-west, seven incidents; north, 13 incidents; north-west, four incidents – a total of 54 incidents in the 2010-11 year. The cost to the state and therefore to the taxpayers, is $5.76 million for that year….During the first nine months of 2011-12, there have been 45 properties damaged or destroyed by arson at a cost of around $2.1 million.”

“There has been an increase in vandalism in the 2010-11 year to 1,588 claims at a cost of $1.7 Million. In the year-to-date we are tracking reasonably well relative to where we were at last year, there are 886 claims and the cost so far is $1.6 Million”

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