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O’Farrell Government ‘aware of fire services levy issue’

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NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell’s has announced his new cabinet, with no change from the opposition line-up for those who are now responsible for major insurance-related matters.

Manly MP Mike Baird is the new government’s Treasurer, calling on his 18 years’ experience in the corporate banking and finance sector.

Michael Gallacher is Minister for Police and Emergency Services, while Greg Pearce is Finance Minister.

Insurance Council of Australia CEO Rob Whelan says the new government “is fully aware of the issues around the fire services levy and of the inequity of [state-based taxes on insurance].

Speaking on a Vero webcast to the industry last week, he said ICA is hoping for a smooth transition from an insurance levy to a property tax-based system in Victoria’s fire services funding model.

“They’ll be looking to see how that transition occurs and what impact it has,” he said. “So we’ll be on our mettle to make sure [it] occurs smoothly and effectively in Victoria.”

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