A Fit and Proper Per­son

New Zealand Classic Car - - Reader's Writes -

Af­ter fill­ing out the ap­pro­pri­ate MR32 ap­pli­ca­tion form and pay­ing the fee, I re­cently re­ceived in the mail what I hoped would be the history of the 50-year-old con­tin­u­ously reg­is­tered clas­sic car I had re­cently pur­chased — a car that still car­ries its orig­i­nal num­ber plates. How­ever, the six-page doc­u­ment I re­ceived told me zip. It seems that the pow­ers of The Pri­vacy Act have been in­voked in this case, as I was ob­vi­ously con­sid­ered un­fit to have ac­cess to such in­for­ma­tion in case I mis­used it. In fact, it wasn’t even pos­si­ble to re­veal the de­tails of the present owner — me! All pages were en­dorsed “In­for­ma­tion Not Avail­able” and ini­tialled by one Les­lie Davis act­ing as the Reg­is­trar’s Del­e­gate. What a shame the orig­i­nal own­er­ship pa­pers did not make it into my hands — I still have no idea of the car’s past. While I un­der­stand that the po­lice and car dealer/fi­nancers have carte blanche ac­cess to these records, dur­ing a phone call to NZTA Li­cenc­ing in Palmer­ston North that I made dur­ing prior re­search, I was in­formed that the fee cov­ered the cost of as­sess­ing the ap­pli­ca­tion, and not for the is­sue of the re­quested in­for­ma­tion it­self. Sure enough, the “con­sid­er­a­tion” of my ap­pli­ca­tion found me un­fit to be privy to the in­for­ma­tion I re­quested. I won­der what the stan­dards are for this eval­u­a­tion process that are ap­plied by NZTA staff when as­sess­ing each such ap­pli­ca­tion, and how much, or lit­tle, time is spent on the process by their staff. If this in­for­ma­tion is avail­able to the NZ Po­lice and car deal­ers/fi­nanciers only, why is the MR32 ap­pli­ca­tion form made avail­able to the public?

Is there any way that the FOMC and VCCNZ could com­bine re­sources to lobby these peo­ple to make them see com­mon sense in­stead of just col­lect­ing ap­pli­ca­tion fees and us­ing the Pri­vacy Act for fi­nan­cial gain? For in­stance, could we not de­sign a sys­tem along the lines of hav­ing NZTA dis­close his­to­ries of ve­hi­cles presently clas­si­fied as vintage to the ap­pli­cant, ei­ther the present owner of the ve­hi­cle — or a Fomc-mem­ber club — le­git­i­mately re­quest­ing such in­for­ma­tion, but per­haps ex­clud­ing de­tails of the present owner or, say, the most re­cent five years? Af­ter all, the pro­vi­sions of The Pri­vacy Act are ob­vi­ously able to be cir­cum­nav­i­gated for this us­age, oth­er­wise such in­for­ma­tion would not be avail­able to any­one at all.

So, there is my com­plaint, along with a sug­ges­tion to per­haps start the rec­ti­fi­ca­tion of this far­ci­cal process. Surely it is not too much to ask when the history of a vintage/clas­sic ve­hi­cle can be of such in­ter­est and rel­e­vance.

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