ALRTA News – 9 August 2019


Proudly supporting the voice of industry and National Platinum Partner of the ALRTA.
Click to find out more.


ALRTA and state association representatives attended the second Transport Industry Standards Forum hosted by Senator Glenn Sterle at Parliament House, Canberra.  Our representatives included: Stephen Marley (ALRTA National President), John Beer (ALRTA VP), Marla Stone (LRTAV VP), John Mitchell (LRTAWA) and Mat Munro (ALRTA).

John Beer addresses the forum.
John Mitchell addresses the forum.

The Forum focused on economic, operational and skills challenges. Two industry delegations were formed to progress standards and training and participants endorsed proposed terms of reference for a Senate Inquiry into the problems facing the heavy transport sector. 

The proposed terms of reference are as follows:
The importance of a viable, safe, sustainable and efficient road transport industry, with particular regard to:

  1. the importance of an enforceable minimum award rate and sustainable standards and conditions for all stakeholders in the road transport industry;
  2. the development and maintenance of road transport infrastructure to ensure a safe, and efficient road transport industry;
  3. the regulatory impact, including the appropriateness, relevance and adequacy of the legislative framework, on all stakeholders in the road transport industry;
  4. the training and career pathways to support, develop and sustain the road transport industry;
  5. the social and economic impact of road-related injury, trauma and death;
  6. efficient cost-recovery measures for industry stakeholders, including sub-contractors;
  7. the impact of new technologies and advancements in freight distribution, vehicle design and road safety;
  8. the importance of establishing a formal consultative relationship between the road transport industry and all levels of government in Australia; and
  9. other related matters.
President Marley addresses media following the forum. 

Senator Sterle will seek political support for the Inquiry to be established and referred to the Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Committee.


The Livestock and Rural Transporters Association of Victoria (LRTAV) is hosting their annual Conference in Bendigo on 16th and 17th August at All Seasons Resort and Hotel.
The LRTAV is an incorporated association of more than 150 livestock and rural transporters working across Victoria, part of the federation of states that form the Australian Livestock and Rural Transporters Association (ALRTA).
The theme of this year’s Conference is Rural Transport – The Forgotten Link.
The LRTAV is delighted to announce Deputy Prime Minister and Leader of the Nationals Michael McCormack is attending our Conference this year.
Michael McCormack is Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development and LRTAV members and conference delegates look forward to hearing about the Federal Government’s initiatives that will benefit livestock and rural transporters and the regional communities and primary producers they service.
Minister McCormack will open the LRTAV Conference on Friday 16th August.

Senator Glenn Sterle, Shadow Assistant Minister for Road Safety is attending the LRTAV Conference and will inform delegates about work being undertaken in the Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References and Legislation Committees within the Senate.
LRTAV representatives have raised significant industry issues with Senator Sterle whilst attending his two Transport Industry Summits held in Canberra in March and August 2019, and the Association is very happy to have the chance for members to hear more from Senator Sterle.
Other special guests and speakers include SARTA President Sharon Middleton AM, Peter Anderson Chief Executive Officer of VTA, Paul Davies Chief Planning Officer at NTC and Leonard Vallance VFF Livestock President.
Quotes attributable to Minister McCormack “I’m really looking forward to addressing the Livestock and Rural Transporters Association of Victoria Conference,” Mr McCormack said.

“Helping our farmers and farming communities remains a top priority for the Federal Liberal and Nationals Government.
“Transporting livestock around the nation plays a crucial role to the economy and the day-to-day lives of all Australians. Without trucks and truck drivers, Australia stops.
“The Federal Government has brought in a range of measures to cut red tape for farmers, making it easier for them to travel across the country with livestock and feed.
“I look forward to discussing these measures in further detail at the conference and listening to what those in industry have to say about them and what else we can do to help strengthen this important industry.”
To register click here.


ALRTA wrote to key parliamentary decision makers this week to support our case to extend proposed laws to outlaw the use of carriage services to incite illegal activities on agricultural land, to also protect trucks servicing agricultural land. 
Last week, ALRTA provided a detailed submission to the Federal Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee which is currently reviewing the proposed legislation and will report to Parliament by 6 September 2019.  ALRTA has also met with advisors to key politicians in the transport and agriculture portfolios.


ALRTA National President and Executive Director joined the Chairs/Presidents and Executive Officers of ATA member associations in Canberra this week to discuss the role and future of industry bodies in a rapidly changing political and technological environment.  The discussions were fruitful generally and in terms of improving inter-association cooperation. 


This is just a reminder that you cannot renew an expired road access permit. If your permit has expired, you must submit a new application.

Renewal applications for current permits should be submitted no earlier than six weeks before the permit expires. Renewal applications submitted earlier than six weeks before permit expiry may not be processed.

For more information head to:


Do you operate in or around Canberra, ACT?  What are your views about the best locations for heavy vehicle rest areas?  To participate in a survey, click here.


ALRTA is a member of the Council of Small Business Organisations of Australia (COSBOA).
COSBOA has acknowledged the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman’s review of the Small Business Fair Dismissal Code and strongly supports the recommendations made by the review.

Peter Strong, CEO of COSBOA, echoed the misgivings about the current code made by the Ombudsman, Kate Carnell.

“The code clearly needs fixing. The FWC has said that 65% of fair dismissal claims made in the first three months of this year were dismissed for being invalid. This is ridiculous. Small business owners are just people and they don’t have the time or resources to go through courts. It wastes the valuable time of the employer who is trying to run a business and keep others employed; it wastes time of any employee who is some how or other caught up in the process; and it wastes the time of the Fair Work Commissioners and staff who have real issues to pursue.”

Mr Strong added “COSBOA members know that reforming the code is good for employment too. When businesses don’t trust the dismissal laws and are afraid of being caught up in frivolous or invalid unfair dismissal claims they are likely to only employ people as casuals or not employ them at all.”

Mr Strong argued that fixing the code was as much an issue for employees as it was for employers.

“The ambiguity of the current code affects the employees as much as the employers, especially when they are also asked to go to court to provide information. The unions should be supporting reform that Labor instigated when in government that has since been gamed by workplace relations lawyers and unscrupulous individuals seeking reward for poor behaviour.”  

COSBOA members have reported that going to court can cause stress for the employees who have to attend as witnesses. It’s often not in their best interest to involve themselves in a conflict with their former co-workers and they don’t want to do it. Employers will therefore pay the ‘go away money’ to keep their other employees out of the fray.

Peter Strong added “in the end it is every employer and employee who suffer from a poorly designed and managed system. Fix it so that those few who are truly unfairly dismissed can get recompense and the others who are trying to get money by unfairly taking advantage of the system can try doing it in some other forum.”

For further commentary, see the below article written by the CEO of the Australasian Convenience and Petroleum Marketers Association (ACAPMA), Mark McKenzie. Mark is also the Chairman of COSBOA.


Australia’s emergency fuel reserves must be held in Australia, Chair of the Australian Trucking Association (ATA) Geoff Crouch said today, following reports the Australian Government is seeking access to the United States’ strategic petroleum reserve. 

The ATA represents the 50,000 businesses and 200,000 people in the Australian trucking industry. 

“Liquid fuel is critical to trucking and critical for our economy. This is both a national economic issue and a national security issue,” Mr Crouch said. 

“The United States is on the other side of a very wide ocean. The proposal to meet Australia’s fuel security obligations by tapping into the US reserve is, as a result, simply not viable. 

“It would not provide security for the Australian economy if there is a disruption to international supply chains. 

“Australia must have emergency stockholdings that meet our international obligations and they must be in Australia,” he said. 

The Australian Government’s interim fuel security report found that at the end of last year, Australia had just 18 consumption days of petrol and 22 consumption days of diesel in stock. 

The report also found that Australia’s fuel stocks were not available equally across the country and that there were significant regional variances, meaning the chance of a regional shortage could be higher than a national shortage. 

The ATA and its members have been campaigning since 2014 about the need to prioritise Australia’s fuel security and this year made a detailed submission to the liquid fuel security review, concerned the government has unrealistic expectations about what would happen in a fuel shortage emergency. 

“Without trucks, Australia stops. Without fuel, supermarkets go empty, medicines don’t get delivered and waste services don’t get emptied. The government’s own just-released freight strategy identifies that most commodities produced or consumed in Australia are delivered by road,” Mr Crouch said. 

“In our submission, the ATA called for domestic fuel security as well as the need for the government to address legal uncertainties that trucking businesses would face if expected by government to prioritise the delivery of particular goods during a fuel emergency. 

“During a fuel shortage emergency, there is no guarantee that trucking businesses would have the commercial ability to implement government priorities, and with our supply chains increasingly operating on a just-in-time delivery model, once trucks stop we quickly start running out of consumer goods,” he said.


ALRTA National President and Executive Director joined the Chairs/Presidents and Executive Officers of ATA member associations in Canberra this week to discuss the role and future of industry bodies
The preliminary program has been released for the Australian Logistics Council (ALC) and the Australian Trucking Association (ATA) 2019 Supply Chain Safety Summit to be held on 16-17 September 2019 at the Hilton in Sydney.

As Australia’s leading supply chain safety event, this year’s sessions will be of interest to all transport modes. The Summit will take a new look at safety management systems and challenge our thinking on how we administer and measure safety.

The focus will be on building a strong safety community by bringing together representatives from across the supply chain to share safety learnings and practical solutions.

Sessions and workshops will include:

  • Virtual reality safety training: The future is now 
  • The role of technology in supporting mental health and wellbeing in the workplace
  • Regulator updates
  • Being a first responder in rural Australia
  • The road to zero
  • Voice of the Driver, and more

 To register click here.


2019 LRTAV Annual Conference
The 2019 LRTAV Annual Conference will be held 16-17 August at All Seasons, Bendigo, VIC. For more information and to register click here.

2020 LBRCA Annual Conference  – Tamworth 6-7 March 
The LBRCA has secured the Tamworth Regional Entertainment and Convention Centre (TRECC) for their 2020 Annual Conference on 6-7 March 2020.