Fire and Emergency New Zealand – a funding review

Updated: 22 December 2021

Fire and Emergency New Zealand was formed in 2017. It brings together our urban and rural, and paid and volunteer firefighters. It responds to fire events, but also has other key functions (such as hazardous substances, and transport accident response).

The Government is reviewing the way that Fire and Emergency New Zealand is funded. Presently, Fire and Emergency is funded by levies through property insurance. If you insure your house or contents, some portion of your insurance bill goes to pay for Fire and Emergency.

Improving an insurance-based funding model

The Fire and Emergency funding review is now focussed on ways to improve an insurance-based levy system - the Department's media release announcing the new scope of the funding review is available here: Refined scope for Fire and Emergency’s funding model review (30 April 2021)

The Department worked with targeted stakeholders through this phase of the review to ensure that the Fire and Emergency levy adheres to the principles in the FENZ Act (that the levy is stable, universal, equitable, predictable, and flexible) and can be effectively implemented.

The Government has decided to make two key changes to the insurance-based funding model set out in the Fire and Emergency New Zealand 2017 Act:

  • the Fire and Emergency levy will be charged on insurance policies for fire damage instead of policies for any material damage, for example, flood or earthquake damage; and
  • the levy will be calculated on the ‘sum insured’ rather than the ‘amount insured’ in a contract, to align better with how insurance policies are written in New Zealand.

More information on these changes can be found in the Department’s press release here: Improving Fire and Emergency's funding model (8 December 2021)

There will be further public consultation prior to any change in the levy amounts that people will be required to pay.

If you want to get in touch with the funding review team you can email them at

The Department’s advice and related Cabinet material is available here: Proactive release of material relating to changes to Fire and Emergency’s funding regime (PDF, 7MB)

What happens next?

  • An Amendment Bill to make changes to the levy provisions in the Fire and Emergency New Zealand Act 2017 is due to be introduced in 2022.
  • Following this, public consultation will take place on how much levy different parties should be charged.
  • UPDATED! Frequently Asked Questions

Previous consultation material 

This material was used during previous consultation stages in the funding review:

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