New authority created for Canterbury rebuild

  • John Key
Prime Minister Earthquake Recovery

Prime Minister John Key today announced the creation of a new, single authority to provide leadership and coordination of the ongoing recovery effort in Canterbury.

The Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA) will be established as a stand-alone government department to enable an effective, timely and co-ordinated rebuilding and recovery effort in Canterbury.

CERA will have a lifespan of five years and its operations will be reviewed annually.

“Rebuilding Christchurch and the wider region following the earthquakes is one of the government's highest priorities and we are committed to providing the necessary resources to make this happen over the coming weeks, months and years,” Mr Key says.

“We are making progress on many fronts, but this will be a long and complex task which will require huge resources.

“While the initial focus has been on rescue and relief, it is critical we move forward with business recovery, getting vital infrastructure running and ensuring we have the right systems and relationships in place to get greater Christchurch rebuilt.

“CERA will support the Minister for Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Gerry Brownlee to get the job done, in close collaboration with local councils and local communities,” Mr Key says.

CERA’s establishment will be made effective by Order in Council and will be made complete by enabling legislation which will be introduced to Parliament in coming weeks.

“It has been clear since the February 22 earthquake that the rebuilding task in front of us is too large to be completed by existing institutions,” Mr Key says.

“We have looked at international examples of major disasters and been mindful of the lessons learned as we have looked for the best governance structure.

“Billions of dollars will be spent on behalf of taxpayers to fix Canterbury and the job requires a significantly more centralised response – but one that works alongside the Christchurch City Council, other councils and local government agencies, and also provides ways for the community to have input.

“I’m confident we have developed a structure that meets those requirements,” Mr Key said.