Industry's doing fine with rego fees, RTA claims

NSW warned trucking companies may shift interstate over rego fees, but the RTA says there's no evidence industry is suffering

Industry's doing fine with rego fees, RTA claims
Industry's doing fine with rego fees, RTA claims
By Michael House | February 12, 2010

NSW is being warned trucking companies may shift operations due to registration fees, but the state’s road department claims the industry is doing fine.

The NSW branch of the Australian Trucking Association has criticised the 10 percent administration fee charged to trucking companies that do not pay a full year registration.

Jill Lewis, the manager of the ATA NSW, claims Victoria does not penalise operators, while Queensland has a set rate significantly less than five percent.

"It is our understanding that nationally the state agencies can charge up to 10 per cent, however NSW is the only state that chooses to do so," Lewis says.

"The question that needs to be asked is does this penalty have the potential to drive operators to move their depots across borders wherever and whenever they can?" she says.

But the Roads and Traffic Authority (RTA) refutes the concern operators may leave the state because the fee has been in place for 14 years.

"Heavy vehicle charges have been set nationally since 1992 and the RTA has applied the 10 per cent administration fee since 1996," an RTA spokesman says.

"There is no evidence in this time that there has been a decline in NSW heavy vehicle registrations due to the introduction of the fee."

According to the spokesman, the fee is necessary to cover the extra costs associated with processing registration renewals more frequently.

He says the ATA NSW needs to submit its concerns in writing if it wants the RTA to review whether to reduce or abolish the fee.

Higher registration fees were introduced nationwide recently as part of an indexed charges system created by the National Transport Commission (NTC).

The increases were introduced on January 1 in NSW after the Government granted a six-month reprieve. All other states introduced the fees on July 1 last year.

As such, the cost of registering a B-double rose from about $9,000 a year to over $12,000, while the cost of a semi-trailer registration rose to $5,310.

The increases were introduced because governments were spending more money on road infrastructure than they were collecting from the trucking industry.

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