NSW State Government changes to your rates instalment
The NSW State Government has changed the way it collects the Fire and Emergency Services Levy (FESL) that helps fund our community’s fire and emergency services.
From 1 July 2017, the State Government has decided, the Fire and Emergency Services Levy will be included in all Council rate instalment notices.
The levy amount is not part of Council rates, it is collected alongside Council rates on behalf of the NSW State Government.
Below are some frequently asked questions that help explain the Fire and Emergency Services Levy.
What is the Fire and Emergency Services Levy?
The levy contributes funds to support the work of Fire and Rescue NSW, the NSW Rural Fire Service and the NSW State Emergency Service in protecting the community from fire, flood, storms and other natural disasters.
The levy also helps fund life saving equipment, fire fighters, training staff and volunteers, infrastructure and community education activities for our fire and emergency services.
Why was it introduced?
The NSW State Government proposed a new approach to collecting funds to assist emergency services.
The Levy was previously collected through home and business insurance premiums. NSW is reported to have the highest rate of non-insurance of all states and so many haven’t contributed to the levy.
What changes can I expect?
From July 1 2017, the NSW State Government is introducing a new system for funding our community’s fire and emergency services.
Contributions to the Fire and Emergency Services Levy will be made through rates instalments. At present, these services are funded by a levy on home and business insurance.
The levy on insurance premiums will be removed from July 1.From this time, all properties, not just insured properties, will directly contribute to the funding.
What involvement does Council have?
Under the legislation (The Fire and Emergency Services Levy), Council is required to collect levy funding on behalf of the NSW State Government through its rate instalments.
What do the changes mean for Camden ratepayers?
The levy will be automatically applied to your rate instalment notice, based on your 2016 property value.
How does this Levy affect ‘public benefit land’?
For residential landowners and owners of 'public benefit land' such as churches and scout halls, there will be an annual fixed charge, plus an additional amount calculated on the unimproved land value determined by the NSW Valuer-General.
What changes will there be to your Council rates instalment?
The Fire and Emergency Services Levy will be applied to your usual rates instalment from July 2017.
Council’s fourth rate instalment (issued in April 2017) will include information from the State Government about the Levy. No Levy will be charged on the May rate instalment.
Will the Levy contribute to Council rates?
The levy is not part of Council rates, it is collected alongside Council rates on behalf of the NSW State Government.
Will my home insurance premium be cheaper?
You can review your cost savings with your home insurer.
Currently, home insurance customers pay a levy contribution as part of their annual insurance premium. Professor Allan Fels has been appointed as NSW Emergency Services Levy Insurance Monitor to ensure insurers pass on savings to customers.
Are there any concessions?
Pensioners, war veterans and other concession cardholders may be eligible for a concession on the amount of the levy they pay. For more information on concessions, please phone the FESL information line.
For more information
If you need further information, please visit fesl.nsw.gov.au or phone the Fire and Emergency Services Levy information line on 1300 78 78 72.
Please note: Camden Council is able to provide further information about classifications and valuations of property. For all other enquiries please contact the Fire and Emergency Services Levy information phone listed above.