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Parity wanted for road users in ACC levies


Media release 24 October 2002

Motorcycle industry groups forms to ensure parity
for road users in ACC levies

A group of industry and motorcycle representatives has come together to make submissions on the ACC levies proposed for 2003/2004. The ACC is currently reviewing its annual levy on road users, and has put forward a number of options, one of which would see a 66.6% increase in motorcyclists’ ACC levies. The motorcycle industry group believes that a punitive approach will not achieve a long term reduction in the cost of accidents.

The group consists of motorcycle distributors, motorcycle dealers, and members of New Zealand’s largest motorcycle club, the Ulysses Club.

The ACC’s review has resulted in more than 1200 public submissions received over a month-long consultation period which ended last week. The prospect of a 66.6% increase in the ACC levy has angered many motorcyclists who feel they have been unfairly singled out.

Although the motorcycle industry group is not involved, motorcyclists have planned a “Ride on Parliament” on Saturday 26 October, which illustrates the strength of feeling toward the ACC levy increase proposals by the general motorcycling public, the majority of whom are also car owners. The industry group supports a positive approach for dealing with the cost of accidents where a motorcyclist is injured.

The group’s case is based on the following points:

- Singling out one group of road users is unfair, particularly given the fact that other road users are often the cause of accidents involving motorcyclists and there are other higher risk road users such as recidivist drunk drivers who are not singled out

- The revenue gain is minimal (estimated at around eight million dollars) and as the levy cost goes up the cost of compliance will increase with the prospect that revenue forecasts won’t be met anyway

- Pricing of the levy is based on historical data which doesn’t recognise a significant change in the current motorcyclist profile

- The industry and others representing motorcyclists are involved in a number of positive initiatives in partnership with ACC and that partnership will fail if the levy is unfairly increased or ACC’s “No Fault” philosophy is seen to be ignored when it suits them to do so

These positive initiatives include:

- Incentives to encourage the use of effective protective clothing

- Community Programmes highlighting motorcycle awareness, by other road users, over the summer months

- Social Marketing campaigns

- Refresher courses and other motorcycling training incentives

The group says it is very concerned that ACC, the one Government agency taking leadership on the issue of reducing the cost of accidents where motorcyclists are involved, may recommend a levy increase to the Government. They believe this will destroy the good work already under way.

ENDS

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