( Politicians want to get their hands on the little pot of gold from speed camera fines. - It's all about the money, not road safety. Always was - Always will be.) 9th Sept 2012
THE state government was forced into a backdown yesterday after it was caught moving laws which would have allowed speed camera fines to be put into consolidated revenue - instead of into road safety as promised.
In what has been a disastrous week for the government and Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian, it emerged when Ms Berejiklian introduced laws this week to set up a "Community Road Safety Fund" the laws contained a sneaky clause to allow the money to be hived off into consolidated revenue. The government had promised to prove speed cameras were not about revenue-raising by directing money to road safety.
In the week in which the government encountered a PR disaster over Ms Berejiklian's decision to release a transport masterplan with $100 billion worth of projects and very little funding behind it, Treasury appeared to have hoodwinked the government into reneging on its speed camera promise.
The law stated that: "Any money in the Community Road Safety Fund that TFNSW (Transport for NSW) determines, with the concurrence of the Treasurer, is not required to meet expenditure incurred in relation to the road safety functions of Transport for NSW, is to be paid into the Consolidated Fund."
president Wendy Machin accused the government of falling victim to Treasury.
"The NRMA and the Police Association called before the last election for all the money raised from speed cameras [to go to] road safety .. make that the law.
"We've now seen the Bill come out and we're very disappointed there's a clause in there which allows Treasury to take . . money and put that into consolidated revenue.
"This is certainly not what we expected . . we were not told there was going to be an escape clause.
"To be honest Treasury hates hypothecation. They hate the notion of money being taken from one source and dedicated to another. We know governments are always short of money . . always looking for revenue . . and I think this is Treasury exercising their muscle.
But Roads Minister Duncan Gay issued a statement yesterday afternoon, saying the clause would be taken out.
This is not an issue the NRMA had raised previously," Mr Gay said.
"But now that they have raised their concerns, we have spoken to the Treasurer and agreed we will remove that provision in the legislation.
"It was always the intention that all money raised from camera detected offences be spent on road safety."
The government has already copped flak after it increased the number of mobile speed cameras by 39 and doubledthe number of red light cameras from 91 to 200 in a policy announcement in July. It also controversially increased speeding fines by 12.5 per cent in the June budget.
Before the election, Mr Gay accused the then Labor government of "revenue raising" through speed cameras.
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- Does the HP-905 Stealth-Jam all Australia Police Laser Speed Guns - Yes! Most Definately.
- What are my chances of getting caught? - 0% When used correctly.
- Will it save me from the "revenue raising cash grab"? - Yes it sure will :-)
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Aug 10th 2012
The NRMA has attacked the credibility of government efforts to understand community views on speed cameras, speed enforcement and road safety.
The government launched a six-week online survey on road safety yesterday, which will help shape a nine-year strategy on the use of speed cameras, where they are placed, and whether more should be installed.
But the survey is self-selecting, not random, only capturing the views of those who go out of their way to take part.
That has angered NRMA ACT and region director Alan Evans, who said its results would be flawed.
''If it's not a proper survey and not properly conducted … it's not going to be very viable,'' Mr Evans said.
''I'm just disappointed that if they wanted to do it properly, that they didn't sit down with us.''
Executive director for Transport and Road Safety Policy Karen Greenland said the survey would probably attract a range of views about speeding, police and speed camera enforcement.Add a comment
9th Aug 2012
Do average speed cameras infuriate you?
Do the posted speed limits frustrate you to the point of blinding road rage?
Now is your chance to tell the government exactly what you think of its road safety strategy.
Canberrans will be surveyed over the next six weeks by the Justice and Community Safety Directorate on various aspects of speed enforcement, including the much maligned point-to-point speed cameras on Hindmarsh Drive.
Executive Director for Transport and Road Safety Policy Karen Greenland said the survey was likely to attract a ‘‘range of views’’ about speeding, police, and speed camera enforcement.
‘‘The Directorate encourages public participation in the survey to ensure that it provides a representative picture of community views,’’ Ms Greenland said.
‘‘The outcomes of the survey will be considered in the development of the Government’s road safety camera strategy,’’ she said.
The survey could influence where speed cameras are placed, and whether the existing network of speed cameras is expanded.
It will be open from today until September 21.
A link to the survey will be available from the Justice and Community Safety Directorate’s website at: www.justice.act.gov.au.
It doesn't sound possible does it? A government ready to listen to the people, not likely! The data will be manipulated and twisted to justify putting more speed cameras on ACT roads. Why do they bother with this slight-of-hand crap. Canberra's drivers are not stupid.Add a comment
ABC News 2nd July 2012
New South Wales households will face bigger utilities bills and fines from today, but some will benefit from new State Government schemes this financial year.
Drivers caught speeding and running red lights will be slugged an extra 12.5 per cent on their traffic fines, but drivers who haven't been fined for five years will get back half of their licence fees.
As well as rising council rates, water and gas prices, the average New South Wales household will be hit with an 18 per cent jump in electricity bills which the pricing regulator puts down to rising network costs and the carbon tax.
However the State Government will give half a million families a new $75 rebate to help offset the cost.
It is also offering a new $5,000 financial year sweetener for those looking to buy newly-built homes under $650,000.
The Roads Minister, Duncan Gay, says there is good news for good drivers in the changes.
"People who have done the right thing for five years, have had no demerit points, they're going to get 50 per cent off the renewal of their licence," Mr Gay said.Add a comment
Vicki Dunne MLA. Photo: Jay Cronan
Michael Inman, Noel Towell (Canberra Times)
July 1, 2012
FIVE ACT MLAs have been fined a combined $4247 for traffic infringements while driving taxpayer-funded cars.
The Sunday Canberra Times can reveal the Liberal and Labor members have accumulated 10 separate speeding and parking offences since the 2008 territory election.
While the MLAs were forced to pay the fines out of their own pockets, the cars driven were provided by the ACT Legislative Assembly.
Documents obtained under freedom of information show Canberra Liberals justice spokeswoman Vicki Dunne was the worst offender, racking up five infringements since January 2010.
The would-be attorney-general was slugged a total of $1827 for two parking and three speeding breaches.
The most recent was in June last year, when Ms Dunne was caught travelling at 89km/h in an 80km/h zone on Hindmarsh Drive.
Ms Dunne has kept a clean sheet for the past 12 months and was penitent about her previous indiscretions.
''There's never an excuse for speeding,'' Ms Dunne said. ''This car is used regularly by myself and my family and when these issues have arisen everyone who uses the car - including myself - is reminded of their responsibility not to exceed the speed limit.''
Alistair Coe was the only other Liberal MLA caught breaking the law.
The ardent critic of fixed speed cameras was clocked travelling at 94km/h in an 80km/h zone on the Federal Highway between Antill Street and Majura Road.
He was fined $745.
Police Minister Simon Corbell was the worst of the Labor MLAs, booked twice for parking violations.
The Attorney-General was fined $255.
Chief Minister Katy Gallagher has kept a clean slate since becoming leader in May last year.
But Ms Gallagher was not so lucky in 2008, when she was caught 10km/h above the speed-limit in Watson and fined $675.
Children's Minister Joy Burch was also caught speeding in Watson and penalised $745.
The ACT Greens avoided running foul of the law, with the environmentally conscious party forgoing the right to a taxpayer-funded vehicle.Add a comment
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