Australia, Transport News

CVIAA celebrates vehicle efficiency standard and ROVER funding

An $84.5 million funding boost to the ROVER system has reinforced the CVIAA’s calls for a complete system rebuild

The federal government, as part of its budget funding announcements, has announced that $84.5 million will go towards supporting the implementation of the upcoming New Vehicle Efficiency Standard (NVES) and improve the functionality of its online portal, ROVER.

Announced by federal transport minister Catherine King, the funding will ensure that ROVER can efficiently operate the NVES when introduced.

Commercial Vehicle Industry Association of Australia (CVIAA) president Clive Polley says the announcement is an acknowledgement that the ROVER system needs investment to improve its functionality to be able to regulate the NVES.

“It’s hoped that some of this substantial funding will go towards improving the underlying system,” Polley says.

“The CVIAA has been calling for a system overhaul since 2019, so we encourage the government to allocate part of this funding to fix the underlying system.”

Polley says the CVIAA has been at the forefront of ROVER improvement advocacy since 2018, with the association contributing to numerous stakeholder roundtables and participating in BETA trials prior to the ROVER’s launch.

“The system, which has undergone numerous ‘upgrades,’ has remained unfit for purpose for some time and requires a complete system rebuild to meet the needs of industry and obligations of government,” Polley says.

“This announcement comes at a critical time for an industry who has been increasingly frustrated by the system’s lack of functionality that substantially increases business costs and time.”

In a recent letter to King, the CVIAA, alongside 49 other industry stakeholders, outlined five key areas for immediate reform required for the ROVER system.

The letter recommended that the federal government reinstate case managers to liaise with industry on open applications, allocate adequate federal funding to rebuild the system, establish a steering committee to guide the rebuild, conduct a legislated RVSA Implementation Review courtesy of an independent organisation and establish an independent Ombudsman to address outstanding complaints or issues with the system.

“It is critical for a functional and efficient portal that supports the commercial vehicle industry’s operations and regulatory compliance. The united voice, led by the CVIAA, is clear – fix ROVER,” Polley says.

“CVIAA welcomes the funding but will need to work with the federal government and its related agencies to ensure the ROVER system meets the needs of both industry and government.”

The CVIAA calls for the federal government to use this funding in part to ensure a more effective and user-friendly ROVER system that will enhance industry’s capabilities and streamline compliance processes.

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