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Legislative Council to debate national regs

Victoria's Legislative Assembly passes bill to introduce national heavy vehicle regulations. Now it’s the Legislative Council's turn

By Brad Gardner | May 10, 2013

A bill to introduce national heavy vehicle regulations in Victoria has passed the Legislative Assembly and will now be debated in the State’s upper house.

The Assembly yesterday sent the Heavy Vehicle National Law Application Bill to the Legislative Council, which adjourned debate until May 16.

Assistant Treasurer Gordon Rich-Phillips introduced the Bill and told the Council it will, once passed, improve the efficiency of Victorian transport operators and put in place a national framework for the regulation of vehicles over 4.5 tonnes to be overseen by the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR).

“The regulator will ensure the consistent application of the national law across all participating jurisdictions, resulting in the same outcome in the same circumstances across Australia,” Rich-Phillips says.

“This bill allows for the application of the Heavy Vehicle National Law, which has been enacted by Queensland Parliament, in Victoria. In doing so it gives effect in Victoria to the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator.”

Except for Western Australia, all jurisdictions are expected to pass relevant legislation before July 1 to hand over heavy vehicle regulation to the NHVR.

The regulator, which is based in Brisbane, is currently limited to looking after the Performance Based Standards (PBS) initiative and the National Heavy Vehicle Accreditation Scheme (NHVAS).

During debate on the Bill in the Legislative Assembly, the Opposition gave its support but added that the regulator should have been given more powers.

The NHVR’s responsibilities will include fatigue management, chain of responsibility and permit applications, but the states and territories will have the final say on road access conditions.

Existing registration and licensing regulations will also continue until the NHVR has the tools in place to take over them.

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