INoTax On Insurance "NTOI" starts with the good news. As predicted in my early postings, Victorian State Government Fire Service Levies (“FSL”) in Victoria will be reduced again by some insurers, this time led by QBE. As NTOI understands it there will be a significant drop in FSL as from 23 March 2013 (removed on home and contents insurance in rural Victoria from this date) and that at least for this insurer FSL will be removed completely from all insurance as from 20 April 2013.
This is more than 2 months earlier than the legislation requires. To view the table showing the changes go to http://www.allanmanning.com/?p=2655.
With the Victorian Government not working with the insurance industry as did the Queensland, South Australia or Western Australian Governments it has been left to the industry to come up to come up with a way to transition the removal of FSL in that state.
This created a monumental problem which NTOI have covered in more than one of my previous posts. For many home and business owners they have paid their last fire service levy on insurance in Victoria and in a few short months it will thankfully be gone.
On the bad news front, the high hopes that many of us had that the enquiry in New Zealand on the removal of FSL in that country went nowhere. NTOI simply cannot understand it. With home and business owners facing increasing insurance costs due to the Canterbury earthquakes I thought any prudent, caring government would have removed the burden of funding of the fire services from those that insure and taken the lead from most countries around the world and funded it through property rates.
NTOI simply cannot understand the logic of keeping the taxes on a service that is so important to protect the New Zealand economy and the voters of that country.
Similarly, we have seen no push in Tasmania to remove the FSL in that state which only applies to businesses, not home owners. NTOI thinks the logic here is that businesses do not vote. What the politicians need to understand is that: voters own businesses; SME is the biggest employer of people in the country; and increasing the cost of insurance leads to less insurance and therefore greater business failure and requests for help from government I appreciate that taxes on insurance accounts for a whopping 7.5% of the budget for the Tasmanian government. But everyone benefits from a well-funded, well trained and properly resourced fire service. Everyone in the community should contribute.
Finally, the no news. NTOI like many are anxiously awaiting the New South Wales State Government’s next move on FSL in that state. We all hope they follow the lead of all the other mainland states and remove the tax before the next election.