$ 1M funding boost for local emergency services

Image: NSW Treasury.

Central Coast Council will soon be more than $1M better off, thanks to a State Government decision to fully fund the local government increase in the Emergency Services Levy (ESL) for 2020-21.

Parliamentary Secretary for the Central Coast and Member for Terrigal, Adam Crouch, said the funding was part of the Government’s $395M local government stimulus package which will also safeguard the jobs of Council staff.

“Central Coast Council will receive a credit of $1,093,869 which can be redirected into providing services and building infrastructure,” Crouch said.

“This is the second year the NSW Government has stepped in to help Council fund the ESL increase, which was first introduced to pay for new workers’ compensation arrangements for firefighters with cancer.”

Minister for Local Government Shelley Hancock said the COVID-19 crisis has hit councils hard financially and the Government is determined to limit the impacts and allow councils to deliver for communities across the state.

Revenue NSW will shortly issue councils with their ESL assessment notices for 2020-21 as required by legislation.

The Office of Local Government will then pay a grant to each council equivalent to the increase in their ESL contribution for 2020-21, with payments to be made in the first quarter of the 2020-21 financial year.

A spokesperson for Central Coast Council said the Council acknowledges the financial relief the funding will afford.

“This financial change will be reflected in the amendments to Council’s Operational Plan for 2020-21 when it returns for consideration at a Council Meeting in June,” the spokesperson said.

The draft Operational Plan for 2020-21 has recently concluded exhibition for public commentary.

Media release, May 6
Parliamentary Secretary for the Central Coast Adam Crouch
Media statement, May 7
Central Coast Council