Cheaper car licensing - for some

HAMISH RUTHERFORD
Last updated 11:00 25/11/2013
ACC chairwoman Paula Rebstock
Fairfax NZ
BENEFITS FOR ALL: ACC chairwoman Paula Rebstock said the feedback the organisation received on the proposals said that all motorists should benefit from its improved financial position.

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The cost of licensing your car is set to fall in 2014, although drivers of newer safe vehicles will save much more than drivers of older cars.

Today ACC revealed its proposals for levy cuts for vehicles, as well as employer and earner levies, for the 2014/15 financial year.

In most cases, ACC is proposing cuts, made possible by its financial position.

Under the proposals for light passenger vehicles, which covers cars, licence levies would drop by more than $92 a year for those with the highest safety rating, while the for the lowest safety rating the cost would fall by less than $10.

The AA said most new vehicles would fall into the safest "risk rating group 4" category.

Today's proposals are a modification on that proposed earlier this year as part of a consultation process, which initially had fees for 560,000 cars remaining the same, with the drivers of the safest cars saving just over $100.

ACC chairwoman Paula Rebstock said the feedback the organisation received on the proposals said that all motorists should benefit from its improved financial position.

Drivers of motorcycles and mopeds miss out, despite lobbying ACC with claims that they subsidise other motorists, with the proposals suggesting fees be frozen.

The Automobile Association (AA) has welcomed the changes to introduce a safety component to the fees.

''We support risk rating passenger vehicles which really is around incentivising motorists to choose the safest vehicle they can afford,'' spokesman Mark Stockdale said.

Workers would also get a saving in the hand, with ACC proposing a cut of 15 per cent in earner levies, which currently cost $1.70 for every $100 earned.

ACC has not provided examples on the practical effect of the changes, although it would appear to give another 25 cents for every $100 earned, or $127.50 for those earning $50,000 a year.Work levies - paid by employers on behalf of workers - are proposed to fall by 17 per cent.

Rebstock said the recommended levy cuts had been made possible by ACC's improved financial situation, with the scheme is on-track to having sufficient assets to meet its liabilities by 2019.

"We're not quite there yet.  Although we achieved a surplus last year, the scheme's liabilities still exceed its assets by $2.3 billion. But we're confident our recommended levy cuts are sustainable."

The final decision on levies rests with the Government.

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