A Labor Party motion by opposition spokesman for local government Peter Primrose might be the only thing that saves the Dubbo Regional Council from having to find money in its budget for an increase to the Emergency Services Levy.
Dubbo Regional Council mayor Ben Shields supports the Labor Party motion which calls for the state government to fund the first year of the extra costs surrounding the levy.
The increase came without warning and at a time when most councils were in the process of finalising their 2019/20 budgets.
"The decision of the NSW Liberal-Nationals government to impose this increase in such an unexpected and sneaky manner is particularly reprehensible in the case of already struggling, cash-strapped councils in drought-ravaged communities," Mr Primrose told the Upper House.
"It just adds to the burden of the $820 million that the government is cost shifting every year onto local councils."
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Mayor of the Dubbo Region Ben Shields said the council is committed to lobbying the NSW government and have been working directly with Local Government NSW to have the first year of this new levy funded by the state government.
"Dubbo Regional Council is very annoyed this was forced on us after our budget had been drafted, and there were a lot of other council's in the same situation," he said.
"Dubbo Regional Councils annual fee for 2019-20 is $1.2 million. This is an increase of $198,137 on the previous 12 months and this has the potential to impact on councils ability to deliver other projects.
"Council is still very committed to ensuring the NSW government acknowledges the impost and funds the levy for 2019-20 themselves, but if that doesn't occur, council will review its budget and find a way to accommodate this shocking cost ourselves.
"We think there should be a general consensus from state parliament that such late notice of a major increase for councils is unreasonable and needs to be addressed."
Dubbo MP Dugald Saunders could not see a problem saying the current cost-sharing arrangement is consistent with how the 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.
Minister for Western NSW Adam Marshall said he thought it would be a matter for individual councils to determine whether they would pay the increases or not.
Country Labor representative and Dubbo Councillor Stephen Lawrence he was concerned with the way the extra costs were "lumped on the council at the last moment."
"The state government knows the reality of cost shifting, and they know local government simply can't cope with further instances of it," he said
"How are we meant to plan for the future when these sort of imposts are imposed on us without consultation."