On 25 October 2022, Property Council submitted to Parliament’s Governance and Administration select committee on the Fire and Emergency New Zealand (Levy) Amendment Bill. This bill amends the insurance-based funding model for Fire and Emergency New Zealand (“FENZ”).
Why this matters to our members
Property Council advocates for regulatory and tax settings that are both fit for purpose and fundamentally equitable. FENZ provides a crucial public service to the property sector and wider New Zealand. It is critical that FENZ is funded with an equitable, fit-for-purpose funding regime. The current approach is inequitable and contrary to the legislative funding principles established in the Fire and Emergency Act 2017. As such, and given the significant burden of FENZ levies on the property sector, this topic is of key importance to our members.
Property Council has longstanding reservations regarding the retention of the insurance-based funding model for FENZ; with our submission urging central government to make a more appropriate level of crown contribution to FENZ, take a leadership role in contributing a fair and equitable portion of FENZ levies and for greater transparency in FENZ data reporting.
However, our submission also acknowledged Cabinet’s decision to retain the insurance-based funding model for FENZ. We ultimately supported the proposed definition of ‘contract of insurance’ and ‘sum insured’. We further recommended that legislation adopt a risk-based approach to setting motor vehicle levies, with levies that are differentiated in cost by risk.