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NSW firies want tax plan to be scrapped | #NoNewTax #FBEU #AusUnions

NSW firies want tax plan to be scrapped.

Fire Brigade Employees’ Union (FBEU) secretary Jim Casey and Greens MP David Shoebridge on Wednesday emptied the sack of letters, said to be from ordinary mums and dads across Sydney, under the gaze of several police.

The letters, addressed to Emergency Services Minister Mike Gallacher, call on the government to scrap its plans for a new tax on households to fund Fire and Rescue NSW.

Under the plans, which are yet to pass into law, insurance companies would no longer have to pay a levy providing almost 74 per cent of the fire brigade’s funding.

Instead, householders will pay a new property-based tax, calculated on land value to a maximum value of $267 for land worth $250,000.

The government argues it’s a fairer way of funding Fire and Rescue NSW that will lead to a reduction in insurance premiums.

But Mr Casey described the new tax as “wealth shifting”, with big insurance firms the only beneficiary.

“Rather than the insurance companies paying, ordinary punters will be paying,” he said.

“It’s basically wealth shifting.”

Mr Shoebridge said he would deliver the letters to Mr Gallacher’s office.

“This is a strong message to this government that ordinary householders should not be picking up the bill to give insurance companies and businesses a tax break,” he added.

Mr Casey said the government is also about to begin closing fire stations in Sydney, the Illawarra and the Hunter Valley as part of cost savings.

“It’s going to affect community safety, no doubt,” he added.

“You close a fire station, you blow out response times.”

via: http://news.ninemsn.com.au/national/2012/10/31/12/33/firies-call-for-tax-plan-to-be-scrapped#

About Darin Sullivan (1967 Articles)
President of the Fire Brigade Employees’ Union and a professional firefighter with more than 25 years’ experience. Father of two daughters, he lives and works on the NSW South Coast, Australia. He is a strong advocate for firefighters and emergency service workers with an interest in mental health issues and caring for those around him. He is a Director on the NSW Fire Brigades Death and Disability Super Fund and works with charities including ‘The Movember Foundation’. As a leader and activist he has long been active in the campaign for action on climate change. Now a Station Commander in the fire and rescue service in NSW and has decades of experience fighting fires, both rural and urban. He is passionate about highlighting the impact climate change is having on fire preparedness and fire behaviour in Australia, and the risks associated with inaction on climate change. Darin is also a spokesperson for the Australian Climate Media Centre.
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