Fire levy reform may cut home premiums

Owners of uninsured property may soon have to contribute to funding fire services in New South Wales under a new plan to levy all ratepayers. The Insurance Council of Australia estimates this would lower household insurance premiums by up to $120. Currently only insured policyholders are paying the fire services tax. They contribute about 73 per cent of the funding for the NSW Fire Brigade and Rural Fire Services with local and state governments paying the rest. NSW Treasury has proposed that the current levy be abandoned and replaced with a broad levy across all property owners.