TIC sets ball rolling on revised heavy vehicle charges

Public consultations on four proposed changes to the way governments set heavy vehicle charges – and invest the proceeds – are planned in coming months.

The proposals agreed to by the Transport and Infrastructure Council (TIC) have four broad elements: service level standards, expenditure planning, the independent setting of heavy vehicle charges, and the hypothecation of dedicated road funding.

Under the proposals, TIC will determine service level standards for different types of roads (in consultation with users).

State and territory road expenditure plans will be assessed against those standards by an independent body to determine monies that can be recovered from heavy vehicle operators.

An independent regulator would then determine the rate of the Commonwealth heavy vehicle road user charge and state heavy vehicle registration fees (to recover the agreed monies from industry).

Revenue collected from these heavy vehicle charges would be dedicated to improved road infrastructure.

A consultation paper on the Heavy Vehicle Road Reform consultation web page is intended to enable stakeholders to better understand the proposed changes.

Online small group workshops are planned for July-August 2020 where issues arising can be discussed.

Based on initial feedback, wider consultation sessions could be held in September and supplementary material published. Written submissions may then be called for later in 2020.

Insights from the workshops will help the TIC decide the next steps for reforming road user charges in 2020-21.