From 1 July 2013 the Victorian Government will introduce a property based levy to fund fire fighting services in Victoria, as recommended by the Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission.

The Fire Services Property Levy will replace the existing insurance -based funding model.  All property owners will pay the levy at the same time as they pay their council rates.

Under the property-based levy:

  • councils will collect the levy through rates notices on behalf of the State Government;
  • the levy will be calculated based on the capital improved value of a property;
  • the levy will consist of a fixed component plus a variable component calculated as a percentage of capital improved property values;
  • the fixed component will be $105 for residential properties and $213 for non-residential properties;
  • the variable component will differ for property types such as residential, industrial, commercial and primary production; and
  • eligible pensioners will be entitled to a $50 rebate against the Fire Services Levy for their principal place of residence.

For more information visit firelevy.vic.gov.au

An online calculation tool can be found at http://www.firelevy.vic.gov.au/how-is-it-calculated.html

A Fire Services Levy Monitor has been established who has substantial powers and can investigate complaints about insurance companies.

For more information about the Monitor visit www.firelevymonitor.vic.gov.au or call 1300 300 635.