Dubbo Regional Council Administrator Michael Kneipp said that a fairer system to collect the NSW Government Levy that funds fire and emergency services across the state will come into effect on 1 July 2017.
On behalf of the NSW Government, local councils will now collect the Fire and Emergency Services Levy (FESL) from property owners alongside their rates.
“Currently, individuals and businesses that buy property insurance contribute most of the funding for NSW Fire and Rescue, NSW Rural Fire Service and the State Emergency Service to protect the community from fire, floods and other natural disasters,” Mr Kneipp said.
“This means that NSW property owners who insure their properties are subsidising households who don’t purchase home and contents insurance,”
Mr Kneipp said fire and severe weather events do not discriminate, and the community rightly expects that firefighting and SES services are available to everyone in their time of need.
“Only in January of this year, the Wellington community experienced a fire event requiring the much needed assistance of our local RFS,” he said.
“It is only fair that all property owners contribute to these services rather than relying on the insured.”
Mr Kneipp said the levy, to be paid by all property owners, is not part of Council’s rates and will be clearly identified as a separate item on the rates notice.
“The amount of the Fire and Emergency Service Levy for each property will be set by the NSW Government and determined by land classifications and unimproved land values.
“While councils identify which land classification properties fall into, the NSW Valuer General is responsible for determining unimproved land values,”
“There is also a handy calculator tool on the FESL website that can help you determine how much you will pay for the levy,” he said.
If you disagree with your property’s classification, you can request a review by Dubbo Regional Council via Customer Service on 6801 4000 or on Council’s website.
Source: Dubbo Regional Council