ALRTA News – 9 March 2018


The LBRCA and ALRTA are delighted to invite you to Opal Cove Resort, Coffs Harbour on 23-24 March for our 2018 combined conference, which means that your voice will be heard louder than ever!

Register Today:

  1. Complete the registration form and return the LBRCA!
  2. Book your accommodation directly with Opal Cove Resort, quote LBRCA upon booking!

Further information is available from the LBRCA and ALRTA websites.


The ALRTA and LBRCA are pleased to announce that the following items will be up for auction at the joint National Conference in Coffs Harbour 23-24 March 2018:

Brown and Hurley – Coffs Harbour


  • 8 x Drive tyres. Goodyear G667 (11R22.5)
  • 2 x Steer tyres. Goodyear S100+/S200+ (295/80R22.5)
  • 4 x GY 4×4 Wrangler tyres
  • Apple iPad 128GB Wi-Fi + Cellular

All tyres include fitting compliments of Beaurepaires.


  • 1 x Cummins X15 Bar Fridge


  • 1 x PACCAR Genuine Starter Motor
    2 x Garmin Dash Cams
    2 x 42 ltr Kenworth Coolers

PACCAR & Dealer

  • Several merchandise packs including bags, books, clothing, gift sets and other branded items.


  • Workplace Tune Up vouchers

These items have kindly been donated by our partners and proceeds from the sale will go to ALRTA and LBRCA to continue making a positive difference in our industry.  A huge thanks from ALRTA and LBRCA to all donors!

Happy Bidding!


The 2018 LBRCA/ALRTA Combined Conference to be held 23-24 March in Coffs Harbour, NSW, will tackle three of the biggest issues affecting rural carriers: heavy vehicle charging, chain of responsibility and effluent management.

ALRTA National President, Kevin Keenan, said that the 2018 LBRCA/ALRTA Combined Conference is the best opportunity for members to better understand current legislative reforms and to have their say on the policies that will shape the future of their industry.

“I invite all interested parties to attend the 2018 Combined Conference”, said President Keenan.

“Our conferences are not just ‘talk-fests’ – we aim to get results.”

“At the 2017 LRTAQ/ALRTA Combined Conference we took an in depth look at mandatory electronic stability control.  This assisted our National Council to resolve a position that is now reflected in the regulatory reforms recently proposed by the Australian Government”.

“This year, we will invite our members to develop a registered industry code of practice for livestock effluent management and to have their say on charging, chain of responsibility and several other important matters”.

Heavy Vehicle Charging
“Australian Governments last year agreed to continue overcharging the heavy vehicle sector by $189m in 2018/19 and 2019/20.  This comes in addition to $1bn in over-charging over the past four years.  Reform of the charging system is desperately needed to stop this blatant rip-off.”

“The 2018 LBRCA/ALRTA Combined Conference will include a presentation from the Australian Government on the plan to move to direct user charging including the new charging calculations, industry trials and responsibility for decision making.

“But charging is only half the story.  That is why we have also invited the Australian Local Government Association to tell us what is needed to actually fix rural roads and provide better access. The ATA will also be there to explain how to get the changes that we need.”

Chain of Responsibility
“Significant changes to chain of responsibility laws are scheduled for commencement this year.  During the session on CoR, NHVR will explain the key changes and how to be ready”.

“A good way to get started is to use a registered industry code of practice to help assess your risks and identify the types of controls that you might consider.  Peter Elliot is spearheading the development of a Master Code of Practice and will inform us about what it is and how to use it”.

Load Restraint and Effluent Control
“With a good understanding of the CoR changes and the Master Code of Practice, our delegates will be ready to tackle the development of a new industry Code of Practice for Effluent Management.”

“This landmark session will first hear about the ALRTA’s overall strategy to improve livestock effluent management throughout the supply chain.  The Australian Livestock Markets Association will then deliver a perspective from elsewhere in the supply chain.”

“Delegates will participate in a workshop-style session during which the ALRTA will ask members and other stakeholders to tell us what an effluent code should cover, who it should be applicable to, what risks are involved and what options there are to address them.”

“Registration of an effluent code will be a game-changer and these first steps are critical. Courts will use this document to determine best practice and whether or not chain parties have actually done everything reasonably practicable to manage load restraint risks,” he said.

Other Highlights
Conference attendees will also hear addresses from:

  • NSW Minister for Transport – the Hon. Melinda Pavey MP
  • Federal Member for Cowper – the Hon. Luke Hartsuyker MP
  • NSW Member for Coffs Harbour – Andrew Fraser MP
  • Federal Senator for NSW – Senator John Williams
  • Mayor of Coffs Harbour – Cr Denise Knight

“The 2018 LBRCA/ALRTA Combined Conference has something for everyone”, said President Keenan.

“Other sessions relate to general vision, policy, compliance and enforcement within NSW along with specific break-out session for livestock and bulk”.

“Scattered around the serious business, delegates can also relax with a round of golf, grab a bargain at the fund-raising auction and kick their heals up at the Blue Ribbon Surf and Turf Dinner and National Sponsors Dinner featuring our National Awards”.

“On behalf of the ALRTA and LBRCA, I invite all transport operators, government officials, media and those interested in the rural road transport supply chain to attend this year’s 2018 LBRCA/ALRTA Combined Conference and help us to improve our industry”, said President Keenan.

The full two-day program of events and registration brochures can be found here.



Last week the ALRTA President and/or Executive Director met with thirteen members of the Federal National Party over two days.

  • Deputy Prime Minister / Minister for Infrastructure & Transport – Michael McCormack
  • Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources – David Littleproud
  • Minister for Resources and Northern Australia – Matt Canavan
  • Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister – Keith Pitt
  • Assistant Minister for Trade, Tourism & Investment – Mark Coulton
  • Minister for Defence Personnel & Veterans Affairs – Darren Chester
  • Minister for Indigenous Affairs – Nigel Scullion
  • The Hon. Luke Hartsukyer MP
  • The Hon. Damian Drum MP
  • Andrew Gee MP
  • Senator John Williams
  • Senator Barry O’Sullivan
  • Ken O’Dowd MP

During the past six months there has been significant changes across the Nationals Leadership team and Ministerial portfolio – much of it very recent.  These meetings will ensure that ALRTA stays on the political radar throughout the changes.

Our main topics and outcomes of discussion were:

  • Chain of responsibility reform: ALRTA provided a more balanced view about the reforms to address misunderstandings about the reforms that have been raised with the Nationals by farming and supply chain lobby groups.
  • EWDs: far greater understanding of the negative impact that EWDS would have on rural carriers.
  • Mandatory ESC: We asked that the Federal Government support broader application of ESC than proposed in the regulatory impact statement. Draft legislation will be introduced this year.
  • Mandatory minimum rates:  The Government is strongly against any attempt to reintroduce mandatory minimum rates but it is almost a certainty under a Labor Government.
  • Effluent infrastructure: There is strong support for our grant applications to the Federal Government.

ALRTA will press home these issues in follow up meetings and correspondence.



The ALRTA National President and Executive Director met with board members of the Australian Livestock Markets Association (ALMA) including:

  • President: Ken Timms
  • Deputy President: Ken Rogers
  • Treasurer: Michelle Webster
  • Executive Officer: Kate McGilvray

Photo (L-R): Ken Rogers, Michelle Webster, Kevin Keenan & Ken Timms.

Our associations share a deep interest in cooperating on several projects relating to ramp standards, improving NVDs, effluent infrastructure and reviewing the fit-to-load guide.

However, ALMA expressed strong concern about the impact of chain of responsibility reforms under the HVNL and actively seeking an exemption from the definition of ‘loading manager’.

ALRTA has welcomed the CoR reforms and we believe that all parties must share responsibility for managing fatigue, speed, MDLR and vehicle maintenance – including those operating selling facilities.

In discussing this issue recently with farming groups, supply chain stakeholders and politicians, it is clear that there are persistent misconceptions about the current CoR laws and the changes that will occur.    We have found that the following information is useful for improving understanding:

  • CoR is not new – it has been in place since 1997.
  • Under current laws, if a driver commits an offence all parties in the chain can be automatically deemed guilty of committing the same offence without so much as an investigation.
  • The reform package will modernise CoR laws by aligning duties with workplace health and safety laws, removing automatic deeming and extending coverage to vehicle maintenance.
  • The reformed CoR laws will be more familiar to chain parties, requiring them to assess potential safety risks and put controls in place where it is reasonably practicable to do so.
  • It is, and will remain, illegal to make a demand or engage in a practice that would cause a transport operator to breach the HVNL.

ALRTA is pleased that our associations have agreed to work together to progress issues of common interest.  ALMA Deputy President Ken Rogers will make a presentation on chain of responsibility at the 2018 LBRCA/ALRTA Combined Conference on 23 March 2018.



The NHVR has released a Chain of Responsibility (CoR) Gap Assessment Tool (the Tool) which is designed to draw users’ attention to particular obligations under the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL).

The Tool asks users a series of questions which leads the user through a process that draws attention to relevant obligations under the HVNL.

The Tool is located on the NHVR website and is free to access and use –



The ATO has released its latest small business benchmarks, providing the average cost of sales and average total expenses.

The benchmarks provide a way for businesses to see how they compare to others in industry. The data is informed by the income tax returns and activity statements of over 1.4 million small businesses, which results in locality and different business circumstances being included in the average range for each industry.

The ATO website includes step by step instructions and a check list of the information you need to work out how your business stacks up.

Check out how your business compares
More information on road freight business benchmarks



Members are reminded that the ALRTA will be holding a Council meeting on Saturday, 24 March 2018.  Details are:

Start: 8:00am
Close: 1:00pm
Location: Opal Cove Resort, Coffs Harbor

For more information please contact the ALRTA Secretariat.