Selasa, 02 September 2014

Hefty rises in SA Emergency Services Levy should be disallowed, MLC John Darley says (ABC)

Independent MLC John Darley, a former valuer-general, says he is exploring options for the South Australian Parliament to overturn hefty rises in the state's Emergency Services Levy.

It has more than tripled this year for some businesses and private households because the State Government is removing a previous discount on the rate charged.

The Government said at state budget time its hand was being forced by federal budget cuts to SA of almost $900 million.

Mr Darley said he was considering whether Parliament could block the increases by disallowing a regulation.

"I'm not too sure we could move a motion of disallowance for a start because it affects a money bill," he said.

"Secondly, if we were to move a motion of disallowance to disallow this regulation it would mean, or it could have the effect of meaning, that pensioners would have to pay the levy, which is not what we would like to happen."

Premier Jay Weatherill said Mr Darley needed to acknowledge why the levy was rising for many South Australians and direct his concern where it belonged.

"I hope he also attaches to his resolution a message for Tony Abbott to reverse his cuts to our health and education system, and the day he reverses those is the day we get rid of the change to the remissions on the Emergency Services Levy," he said.

About 15 years ago, a fire services levy on insurance premiums in SA was replaced with the broader-based Emergency Services Levy on properties, to help pay for the state's emergency services.

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