Australian Farmers Support Compulsory Fire Levy

June 11, 2004

A report from the Australian Broadcasting Corp. notes that The New South Wales Farmers Association has backed a proposal for council rate notices [property taxes] to carry a compulsory fire insurance levy.

The article indicated that the country’s insurance industry “has already backed the plan, which it says will change the existing structure where only those who take out private insurance pay a contribution towards the state’s fire fighting capabilities.”

The hot dry weather in Australia’s summer months creates severe fire hazards that have proven to be very costly in terms of property damage, business interruption and loss of infrastructure.

The article said the “public accounts committee of State Parliament is reviewing fire service funding and is considering recommending a property-based fire levy. The association’s Mal Peters says a change to the system would benefit farmers who may contribute through different insurance policies, and who also make up many of the volunteers in rural fire service units.”

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