Road funding reforms
THE buck needs to stop at the pump. Literally.
That was the warning from Geoff Crouch as the Australian Trucking Association (ATA) chairman came out swinging over the Australian Government’s road funding reforms.
Mr Crouch, reading figures from the National Transport Commission, said truck and bus operators would be overcharged by a whopping $343 million due to fuel and registration charges in 2017–18.
“The overcharging goes back years, and started because the charging model underestimated the number of trucks and buses on the road,” Mr Crouch said.
“Trucking operators pay for our use of the road system through a fuel based road user charge, administered as a reduction in our fuel tax credits, and very high registration charges.
“These charges seek to recover the cost of the road expenditure that is due to trucks and buses.”
Instead, the ATA would like to see a revenue freeze, agreed upon in 2015, to be extended into the near future.
“The only approach consistent with the Government’s overall productivity reform agenda is to continue the revenue freeze,” Mr Crouch said.
“Continuing the revenue freeze would reduce the overcharging to $148.8 million in 2018–19.
“It would reduce fuel and registration charges, which would give the hard working businesses in our industry more scope to invest and increase their productivity.”
It is also the only approach that supports the Government’s broader road reform aims.