​​​​​Local Emergency Management Arrangements (LEMA)

Local governments are significantly involved in emergency management and have specialised knowledge about their communities. In an emergency, local governments use this unique knowledge to respond to the situation as well as provide support and resources.

Under the Emergency Management Act 2005 (EM Act), local governments are required to have local emergency management arrangements (LEMA) in place. LEMA are the collection of all emergency management strategies, plans, agreements, an​d other documentation applicable to the local government district. In an emergency any of this information can be utilised depending on the circumstances.

Local governments are responsible for developing, maintaining, and testing their LEMA. Effective LEMA enhance the community's resilience and readiness for emergencies through plans that cover the phases of emergency management: prevention/mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery.

To read more about LEMA, you may refer to the Local Emergency Managem​ent Arrangements Guideline and Model​, part of the Strategic Framework for Emergency Management in Western Australia.

What is the LEMA review?

In late 2019 the State Emergency Management Committee (SEMC) approved a sector-led review of Local Emergency Management Arrangements (LEMA) requirements and responsibilities.

The request for a review was driven by reports from across the sector that current LEMA inclusions, processes for development and effectiveness are no longer fit-for-purpose, and that there is a need to consider other approaches that may better build, support, and communicate emergency management capability.

The State Emergency Management Committee (SEMC) Business Unit and the WA Local Government Association (WALGA) are working together with key stakeholders to identify issues with LEMA, and to investigate and develop options for streamlining the LEMA process.

This is a significant opportunity to reshape the current LEMA and improve processes, so they better fit with the changing landscape of emergency management, as well as ensure they are fit-for-purpose, contemporary, scalable, and sustainable.

At the completion of the LEMA review, a LEMA Improvement Plan – including an implementation plan – will be developed.

The review consists of the following key activities:

  1. Consultation and engagement with key stakeholders to obtain feedback on LEMA.
  2. Prepare a draft consultation and recommendations report, based on feedback.
  3. Pilot projects or exercises to test new LEMA approaches.
  4. Produce a LEMA Improvement Plan including an implementation plan.​


What to do if your LEMA is due for review

The outcome of the LEMA review - an improvement and implementation plan - is not due until mid-2023. 

If your Local Government's LEMA is scheduled for review before this date, it is recommended to proceed as ​planned so your obligations under the EM Act are maintained.


Con​tact Us​​

If you have feedback or questions, get in touch at LEMAreview@dfes.wa.gov.au