Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) is drawing a line in the sand from October 1; all mobile cranes that use a public road at any time are subject to Road User Charges (RUCs).
It comes off the back of a year-long collaboration between the Crane Association of NZ (CANZ) and NZTA to lift the inconsistencies, ambiguity, and inequity regarding RUC’s calculation and costs.
The work also secured a healthy rebate for around 25 mobile crane companies after it was discovered they had overpaid RUCs.
To ensure similar errors are not repeated, a fact sheet has been developed by both organisations to provide the clarified rules and registration process. The fact sheet defines every variety of mobile crane, what RUC category they fall within including examples, and explains permits, the hubodometer exempt process and special RUC rates.
It is a great result for the Association and its members, CANZ Executive Officer, Sarah Toase, says.
She adds the Association is grateful for NZTA’s willingness to engage with its members to develop a deeper understanding of the issues.
“NZTA know that some crane owners are not currently paying or are underpaying RUCs.
“However, thanks to this process, they will not investigate or retrospectively charge people for this – that means tens of thousands of dollars will be wiped in an act of amnesty.
“There is now a line in the sand, though. NZTA will be charging and seeking payment from
October 1, and every mobile crane operator is required to pay RUCs for cranes that are driven on public roads.”
She adds it is imperative that mobile crane owners are aware of crane vehicle registrations, and that regardless of the type of registration – specifically MR2B – all mobile cranes that use the road are required to pay RUCs.
While clarifying the methodology for mobile crane RUCs, it became apparent that many companies had overpaid.
As a result, CANZ engaged TSL through its lobby fund to investigate and secure rebates on behalf of our members. TSL has been integral to the overall project and their technical input has been invaluable.
“CANZ has been advocating that there be a fairer RUC methodology for some months and this result is a testament of our collective voice and perseverance over the years to lift the industry’s standards,” Ms Toase says.
“And just as importantly, our relationship with NZTA is all the stronger from our working together.”
NZTA’s Senior Manager of Commercial Licensing and Revenue, Paul Fantham, says the RUCs for mobile cranes take into account the unusual axle spacings and tyre sizes and accurately reflect the damage being done to roads.
The mobile crane industry is complex, with about 450 mobile cranes in operation in New Zealand.
About 68 operators have one crane, and 48 have more than one. Some cranes are transported to and from sites, and others are driven.
Click the link earlier in the story or HERE for a copy of the NZTA fact sheet.