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ACC merger plan deceptive and devious

Dr Paul Hutchison
National Party ACC Spokesman

24 October 2006

ACC merger plan deceptive and devious

Plans to merge the employer and self-employed ACC accounts will have serious negative effects on the efficiency of the scheme, the Accredited Employers Partnership Programme, the chance to offer choice and competition, or to have it full funded by 2014, says National’s ACC spokesman, Paul Hutchison.

“Minister Ruth Dyson’s bill, which is due in Parliament today, sends a murky and irrational response to what the Government says is a ‘commitment to a fair and sustainable ACC scheme’.

“Currently, the self-employed have nearly twice the rate of entitlement claims as do employees.

“Merging the accounts will not only cause cross-subsidisation, but also send the signal that higher injury rates and unsafe workplaces are a good thing.

“The Government is also making the highly successful Accredited Employers Partnership Programme less attractive by temporarily lowering the employers levy – it is due to drop by 22% over two years, then increase by 37% over six years.

“In the longer term, this will mean larger employers will transfer their business to the employers account, which ACC runs less efficiently, so putting extra costs onto taxpayers.

“Ms Dyson can’t bear the thought that larger employers can run their ACC claims and rehabilitation more efficiently than ACC itself,” says Dr Hutchison.

“How can the Government claim this planned legislation shows a commitment to fairness and sustainability when it bypasses the usual levy consultation process for 2007/08, and when ACC’s track record shows serious inefficiencies?”

ENDS

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