The NSW Government has backed down on a new fire and emergency services levy, admitting its modelling was wrong and the extra cost on fully insured small and medium businesses was unfair.
The new levy was set to come into effect on July 1 to replace the Emergency Services Levy on insurance policies.
It would have meant all landowners would have paid a contribution to fire and emergency services as the levy would have been attached to council rates.
Currently only those who are insured pay.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the new system aimed to make it fairer for all, but the modelling received from Treasury was wrong.
“It’s become apparent to us that when we’ve looked at the advice on the modelling for industrial and commercial but [then] looked at the examples that were coming in, there is a mismatch,” the Premier said.
She admitted the levy came from four years of work that would now be reviewed.
But the Premier also defended the backdown.
“What is the point of doing something if it doesn’t make the system fairer?” she said.
This article was originally published by ABC.net.au.
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Tags: bushfire, Emergency Services, Fire Rescue Safety Australia, government funding