Consultation on operation of new fire servicesInternal Affairs
Following the First Reading passage of the Fire and Emergency Bill today, Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne has released a discussion document on new fire services regulations as part of the reform of the fire services sector.
Legislation before the House will establish a new organisation, Fire and Emergency New Zealand (FENZ), on 1 July 2017 that amalgamates rural and urban fire services.
“The current fire services legislation dates from the 1970s and is being replaced by the Fire and Emergency New Zealand Bill – modern, permissive legislation that allows the new organisation to set regulations to govern its day to day operations.
“The public has six weeks give feedback on detailed elements of the funding regime for the new organisation, including what information should be provided by levy payers.
“The current schedule of exemptions from the fire levy will not appear in the Bill and instead, any exemptions will be established by regulations. Feedback is sought on what property should be exempt from the levy and what principles should underline the exemption-making process,” Mr Dunne said.
The legislation establishes local committees that will represent the interests and needs of regions to FENZ. The Minister is seeking feedback on whether any further regulation is needed for the committees.
“We also need stakeholder input into what, if any, details are required around fire control measures, beyond what is in the legislation.
“The new legislation and this discussion document are important steps forward as we work together to build a 21st century fire service for New Zealand,” said Mr Dunne.
The consultation closes on 18 August. The discussion document is on the Department of Internal Affairs website, along with a submission form. Feedback should be sent to FireServicesTransition@dia.govt.nz
The document can be viewed here.