Equal Remuneration Order and General Rates Exemptions

TasCOSS facilitated statewide roundtable discussions with Tasmanian community service organisations in August 2019 to develop a strong, shared voice to State and Federal Governments on the Equal Remuneration Order (ERO) and the General Rates Exemption for charities.

Discussions focussed on the removal of payment of the ERO from federal grants from 2021/2022 and potential amendments to the Local Government Act to change eligibility and application of General Rates Exemptions on properties owned and/or operated by charities in Tasmania.

Both issues have the potential to impact on revenue and the viability of community service organisations moving forward. Therefore, the face-to-face discussions with industry stakeholders was vital to developing a strategic advocacy plan. The information gleaned at these roundtable discussions has informed our ongoing advocacy on these issues.

Strong relationships forged with the Local Government Association of Tasmania (LGAT) and the Treasurer and Minister for Local Government have allowed us to progress General Rates Exemptions and TasCOSS’s ongoing and open discussions as well as participation in the Local Government Act Review process.

In August 2020, TasCOSS received written confirmation from the Premier, the Hon Peter Gutwein MP, with regard to ongoing funding for the cost of the ERO. The Premier outlined final allocation for the state’s ERO funding obligations will be reflected in the 2020/21 State Budget, to be delivered on 12 November 2020, and reflected across the Forward Estimates.
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Public Policy

The Policy Team produced 20 submissions to government consultations across a range of policy areas in 2019/20.

Working Together (WT)

TasCOSS continued to engage with some of the families participating in the pilot throughout 2019, including continued contact with some who transitioned to school in 2020, feeding back their voice and experience to the Department of Education.

Policy Conversations

Policy Conversations is an ongoing series of free 90-minute events hosted by TasCOSS. The Policy Conversations series aims to give members of the community services industry opportunities to share information and discuss current state and federal policy issues while also providing a forum to gather input for the industry’s submissions to government on specific issues and other advocacy work.

Energy Advocacy

TasCOSS negotiated an energy advocate role funded by the three utility companies (Aurora Energy, Hydro Tasmania and TasNetworks). They will provide $255,000 over three years to build a collaborative working relationship between the funders and TasCOSS.

2020/21 TasCOSS Budget Priorities Statement (Preventing hospitalisations in Tasmania)

Right now in our state thousands of Tasmanians can’t access Australia’s universal health care system when they are sick. TasCOSS calls on our State Government to fulfill its core duty of care to Tasmanians by resetting access to basic health care services available to Tasmanians in our communities.