Gunnedah Shire Council may need to pass an extra cost onto ratepayers if an issue with the Emergency Services Levy isn't resolved by the state government.
The council has received an extra cost of $47,000, an increase of 23 per cent compared to the last financial year, and is supposed to find this money within the already set 2019/2020 budget.
Gunnedah mayor Jamie Chaffey said while the council supported the levy in helping injured emergency services staff the "simple cost shifting from the state government is not the answer".
"It's not the first time it's happened and it's probably not the last but it's quite frustrating when the council - working with the community - identify and make financial allowances for one through to four year plans of delivery for the community," Cr Chaffey said.
"My view is the coverage should be immediate for those volunteers and that cost should be covered by the state government during the 12 month period."
Liverpool Plains Shire Council mayor Andrew Hope has also expressed concerns after the councils bill came back as $84,000 dearer than usual.
Cr Hope has written to a number of politicians so the issue can be alleviated, and the council's general manager Ron Van Katwyk will be liaising with the government to explain how the extra charge would affect the shire.