Dubbo mayor Ben Shields is seething after the NSW Government passed on to ratepayers the costs to increase workers compensation coverage for firefighters.
Cr Shields said the Council might be forced to cut services to fund the local government sector's share of the increased Emergency Services Levy while insurers have indicated additional costs will be passed on to policyholders.
Councils were told they needed to pay a 15 per cent increase via a Revenue NSW invoice last Tuesday.
"This is another example of cost-shifting by the Berejiklian and Barilaro State Government," Cr Shields said.
"They've just gone to an election spruiking how much money they have, and yet they seek to offload costs to Local Government whenever they can.
"This is not reflective of community expectations when it comes to what they should pay for and what Local Government should."
NSW Shadow Treasurer Ryan Park said the Nationals and Liberals have "sneakily" passed on the cost increase onto ordinary people across NSW, including those emergency service workers who the government's measures are meant to assist.
"The NSW Liberals and Nationals have not been honest with the public. They never once said how this package would be paid for and have sneakily passed the cost on to the people of NSW," he said.
"This is a vital package for our firefighters, but instead of paying for it out of consolidated revenue and through the workers' compensation scheme, the Liberals and Nationals have decided to pass the cost on to ordinary people, including to the career and volunteer firefighters who desperately need this package.
"This Government have effectively made our firefighters pay for their own workers' compensation package."
But Dubbo MP Dugald Saunders disputed Labor's claims saying the current cost-sharing arrangement is consistent with how the Emergency Services Levy has been funded historically.
"Insurers will meet 73.7 per cent of the cost, Councils will provide 11.7 per cent, with the Government funding the remaining 14.6 per cent," he said.
"To ensure our state's firefighters receive the medical support and care they require in their hour of need, the NSW Emergency Services Levy will increase.
"The NSW Parliament passed the Workers Compensation Legislation Amendment (Firefighters) Bill 2018 on November 22, 2018, with support from across major and minor parties."
Insurance Council of Australia spokesman Campbell Fuller told the Sydney Morning Herald the changes would mean a jump in the final amount insurance policyholders would pay.
"We calculate the new emergency services contribution target will result in a 15.2 per cent increase in the emergency services levy component of insurance policies from July," he said.
He said the workers' compensation changes should be funded by the State Government through consolidated revenue.