MACHINERY dealers are facing another battle against increased costs with bureaucrats and the governm

15 Feb, 2007 07:00 PM
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Essentially the FMDA is being caught under the umbrella of legislative changes to the Bill, which requires stricter licensing of businesses and individual repairers.

From March 19 next month, any mechanic will be required to be licensed by the Motor Industry Vehicle Board (MIVB) to repair trucks and cars.

By March next year, machinery dealers will be required to be licensed as a business of repair of trucks and cars.

The license fee for each mechanic will be $65 a year. An unlicensed mechanic could face a penalty of $50,000.

The fee for dealerships has yet to be announced.

Under the Bill a vehicle used principally for primary production is exempt except where that vehicle involves the carriage of persons or goods over public roads.

This means that to repair grain trucks and trailers a mechanic will require a repairer¹s license. And if a dealer chooses to repair the truck, he will need a business license.

According to FMDA president Geoff Perkins, the regulations are another onerous impost on machinery dealers.

³This legislation has been written to get rid of backyard mechanics in the city and we¹re far from backyard,² Mr Perkins said.

³In fact we¹re very much front yard and 30pc of our repair business is on licensed vehicles.

³The legislation not only requires us to now be licensed but also to comply with other regulations that involve more paperwork and time.

³It¹s just another example of government pushing through laws that have not been well researched by bureaucrats.

³Nobody has come to us and talked about a sensible way for country businesses to comply.

³We just get lumped in with everybody else.²

Mr Perkins said among the regulations included notifying the MIVB within 14 days of staff changes with a $2000 penalty for non-notification within that time.

The MIVB also must be notified of new management appointments and the board has to agree to this person under penalty of losing a business license.

According to FMDA secretary Sandy Lewis, the Bill is a copy of NSW legislation.

³I am told it has served no useful purpose except revenue raising,² Mr Lewis said. ³There has been no reduction in theft, no reductions in claims, and of course, it is unenforceable as back yarders can say they are helping out a mate for free.²

Mr Lewis said the only bright note about the regulations was that it had to be reviewed every five years.

³We are speaking with as many politicians as possible to gain exemption from these onerous regulations,² he said.

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