Tas emergency reform after critical review

Tasmania's fire and state emergency services are set to be merged after reviews found poor governance arrangements are hampering frontline responses.

The state government on Tuesday announced plans to combine the Tasmania Fire Service and the State Emergency Service and form one entity.

Legislation for the reform must still be voted on in parliament, while funding for the new model will be part of the 2023/24 budget.

A 2020 review of the 43-year-old Fire Service Act found there was overlap with other acts leading to uncertainty in key operational and regulatory frameworks.

It also found the act hindered the ability of fire and emergency service providers and the community to implement strategies to prevent, prepare for and respond to emergencies.

"We need to bring that act (and) systems ... into a contemporary framework," Premier Jeremy Rockliff told reporters.

"There have been many reviews of the Fire Service Act, and they have consistently found two key motivators for change.

"Our emergency services currently have unclear governance arrangements and outdated funding arrangements as well."

The state government says the new Tasmania Fire and Emergency Service will create a clearer chain of command.

It will be headed by a commissioner, with current Tasmania Fire Service chief officer Dermot Barry set to fill the role.

The reforms, which have been backed by the United Firefighters Union Australia, also include "greater protections" for emergency service volunteers.

The state government says the Tasmania Fire Service and State Emergency Service will maintain their individual identities as requested by staff and volunteers.