The Australian Livestock and Rural Transporters Association is hoping other States follow South Australia’s lead, after the Weatherill Government last week announced it will hand back at least $1100 to each regional and rural road train operator across the State.
The SA Government announced as part of its State Budget that it will provide a 100pc concession on all registration charges for ‘road train converter dollies’, commencing from July 1.
A converter dolly is a small trailer, fitted with a turntable (pictured above left). It allows two, or more, semi-trailers to be joined together so as to create the classic ‘road train’ used in regional, rural and remote Australia.
“The rural trucking industry is delighted by this decision,” National ALRTA President John Beer said.
“In recent months, we’ve been quite horrified by a national plan to increase registration charges for road trains by a massive 21pc in a single year.”
“The State Government has listened to our concerns that the planned increase was wildly excessive.”
ALRTA executive officer Philip Halton told Beef Central that the organisation is now hoping to see similar moderation from other states.
Mr Beer said road train operators provided an essential freight service that supported farmers, cattle producers and rural and regional communities.
No-one in the bush could bush could possibly afford a 21pc increase to the cost of their freight service, he said.
“We were able to show the State Government that the proposal, from the National Transport Commission, contained substantial economic errors.”
“The Government’s responded to our concerns with a very responsible, balanced decision.”
He said that even with the concession, road train operators would still more than pay their own way and would be making a very strong contribution to State revenues.