On Monday this week NIBA presented to the NSW Parliament Upper House Committee inquiring into the funding of emergency services in the State. NIBA was represented by President Tim Wedlock, NSW Committee Deputy Chair Rebecca Wilson and CEO Dallas Booth.
NIBA representatives were able to give the Committee first hand accounts of the impact of the reinstatement of the emergency services levy (ESL) on insurance premiums in May and June 2018 (following their removal by insurers a year earlier).
Wilson said, “I couldn’t be prouder of the representation NIBA provides its members. Abolishing ESL is imperative for our clients.”
There were suggestions that the change to a levy on property owners would amount to a “great big new tax”, but no account was taken of the fact that we already have a major tax on insurance premiums that raises well over $700 million each year, making property insurance unaffordable for many people and businesses.
NIBA reinforced the unfair nature of the current levy, bearing in mind that all property owners receive the benefit of the emergency services, regardless of whether they pay the levy via their insurance premiums.
The association reaffirmed its commitment to work with the NSW Government to develop a fair and effective property levy for funding of our emergency services, similar to the reforms implemented in all Australian mainland States and Territories in the past 20 years.