As New England faces a dangerous fire season, the NSW Government will increase the standard non-parole period for bushfire arsonists. It comes on the back of tougher maximum sentences which were increased from 14 to 21 years last November.
Attorney General Mark Speakman also asked the Sentencing Council for a review of the standard non-parole periods, now, they are about to be increased as well.
Member for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall backed the crackdown, saying the region already faced a horror bushfire season.
"This amendment sees the standard non-parole period for arsonists raised from five to nine years, and is about saying we won't tolerate people endangering lives by lighting fires for their own enjoyment," Mr Marshall said.
"Even though it wasn't deliberately lit, this year our region experienced first-hand the devastation a bush fire can cause with nearly 20 homes destroyed at Tingha, and thousands of hectares of productive farmland burnt out.
"Nobody wants to live through that again."
The offence will apply to the charge of intentionally causing a fire and being reckless about it spreading on public land or someone else's property.
Minister for Police and Emergency Services David Elliott agreed one act of stupidity could bring a community to its knees.
"My message to would-be firebugs is to stop and think about the children and families who could be killed or injured, and the huge economic and emotional toll of being homeless and having to rebuild properties and farms from scratch," he said.
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