NorthConnex Toll Free Up For Debate
This week the debate is up for whether truckies can use the NorthConnex free for a set period of time. Over the weekend there were Carriers taking a position against the latest NorthConnex tunnel as toll companies increase their tax to use the road. Furthermore, legislation prohibiting the use of Pennant Hills Road for heavy vehicles or risk fines remains in place.
In a recent Big Rigs report, NSW Shadow Minister for Roads John Graham said alerted Big Rigs that "his Toll-Free Bill is expected to be argued in the Lower House on Thursday."
“Tomorrow the government party room has to decide for or against it. They’ve been caught by surprise on this one. It’s moved a bit quicker than they were expecting.
It's times like this that a united trucking industry is as important as ever.
“The fact tolls go up 4% every year but wages and inflation go up by much less. It’s the lack of toll-free periods, the fact truck drivers pay a toll or pay a fine [$191]." - John Graham
The TWU NSW State Secretary Richard Olsen reported recorded numbers to the protest rally on Saturday.
Of particular note, the TWU is campaigning for the Government to do the following:
No New Tolls.
Compensation for any toll road increases from 2020 and that compensation scheme will remain in place until the pandemic is finished.
A cap on the tolls commercial vehicles pay.
In the future the NSW Government and Transurban will help operators of commercial vehicles facing hardship, even though Linkt and Transurban are currently refusing to do so.
Industry Agreements will include clauses that include compensation for the costs of using toll roads.
Government will make cost recovery easier by locking fair payment times into legislation. Transport industry businesses and owner-drivers should be paid within 30 days.
Government can show leadership and share the responsibility for a fairer industry to ensure all Government contracts include enforceable minimum standards and rates. Read the full report HERE