Ministers lead on A-Trailers

Another of the big campaigns over the past few months has been to secure action on A-Trailers.

In meeting after meeting with every Minister involved in this issue, we’ve pressed the message that we needed to see real results on this issue, on the road, from 1 July 2012.

In May this year, the NTC made a public promise to conduct a ‘review’ of A-Trailer charges. A nagging fear for many of our members has been that, even with the NTC having all the best intentions, this ‘review’ might drift along and never quite produce a practical change.

It would be wrong to go repeating all the detail of the discussions that the industry was privileged to observe last Friday. So I can simply say that every Minister the ALRTA has gone to on this issue was deeply impressive in their commitment to getting practical, swift and fair action on this issue.

And while all of those Ministers deserve our thanks, it has to be said that Minister Pat Conlon, from South Australia, was truly amazing in his support for our cause.  Even if he was the only Minister on our side, I’d still put money on.

As the longest-serving Transport Minister in the country, Minister Conlon’s words carried special weight. He was promptly and firmly supported by the newest Minister in the country, the Hon Duncan Gay from NSW, demonstrating just how widely shared this issue has become.

The NTC’s website now states that the Ministers “… recognised the urgency for industry of resolving these issues and have requested that the NTC undertake further analysis … and present advice to Ministers in February 2012”.

Clearly, watch this space.

… thank you Kenworth

While the final battle’s still to be won, now’s a good time to pause and say ‘thank you Kenworth’.

Some time ago, President Beer and I realised that the amount of work we were putting into the A-trailer issue was going to blow our Budget out the door.

Kenworth came to the rescue, generously providing a top-up to the national sponsorship they’ve always provided to us. We’ve spent every penny, and simply would not have achieved these results without Kenworth’s support.

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