Finding A Fairer Funding Formula For Fire Equipment

Finding A Fairer Funding Formula For Fire Equipment

Victoria Treasurer Kim Wells

Victoria Minister for Bushfire Response Peter Ryan

Coalition Government Releases Consultation Paper For New Fire Services Funding Model

Victor P Taffa

The Victorian Coalition Government today released a community consultation paper for the design and implementation of a fairer, more equitable system to fund fire services in Victoria.

Treasurer Kim Wells said the consultation paper was the first step in introducing a significant and long-overdue reform to ensure Victoria’s fire services were appropriately funded.

The Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission recommended that ‘the State replace the Fire Services Levy with a property-based levy and introduce concessions for low-income earners’.

Deputy Premier and Leader of The Nationals Peter Ryan said the Coalition Government had adopted all Bushfires Royal Commission recommendations.

Mr. Ryan said the Coalition Government would introduce a new levy that at long last ensured all Victorian property owners paid a fair contribution to the state’s fire services, while ensuring Victoria’s fire services continued to operate with sufficient resources.

“The Fire Services Levy (FSL) should have been scrapped by the former Labor Government years ago. Until just prior to the election, Labor refused to listen to the concerns of Victorians calling for the FSL to be abandoned.” Mr. Ryan said.

“Every Victorian understands the need to have well-funded fire fighting services and the release of the consultation paper is an important step in implementing this new approach.”

Mr. Wells said the options paper set out the Coalition Government’s proposal to replace the current funding model with a new property-based fire services levy.

“I encourage all interested community members to read the consultation paper and make a submission to inform the final design and implementation for the new FSL.” Mr. Wells said.

The consultation paper is available at www.dtf.vic.gov.au  and submissions close on 30 September.

The Coalition Government intends to introduce legislation in early 2012. There will be a transition period that will commence on 1 July 2012 to allow insurers to phase out the FSL prior to full implementation from 1 July 2013.

VIC Minister For Bushfire Response Peter Ryan

VIC Minister For Bushfire Response Peter Ryan