Putting it in perspective

The ACC levy rort - targetting motorcyclists

, posted: 27-Oct-2009 14:18

Another weekend, another example of the travesty proposed by the ACC.
An accident that appears to be caused by a car driver.  And yet all motorcyclists are expected to pay for that car drivers mistake. 

You'll note that the accident is not related to the size of his motorcycle and yet the proposed levy is.

Is the ACC a no-liability scheme?  Or not?  If motorcyclists pay then why not cyclists - their burden to the ACC when they are hit by a car must be as great. 
How about pedestrians? 
Weekend sports players? 

Who is next?

"A man and a toddler were critically injured after a car was forced into the path of a motorbike yesterday near Huntly.
The 3-year-old was due to be transferred from Waikato Hospital's intensive care unit to the Starship hospital in Auckland last night and the 52-year-old male motorcyclist was in a serious condition, and to undergo surgery.
Initial analysis by the Waikato police serious crash unit indicated the southbound car had tried to turn across State Highway 1 about 3pm and was shunted in the rear, forcing it into the path of the motorcycle."
 NZ Herald 26 October 2009

Other related posts:
A call to arms: Civil Disobedience
ACC - motorcycling as a social activity. Levelling the playing field with cyclists.

Comment by marcus4nz, on 27-Oct-2009 15:32

Agreed- car drivers are usually the ones at fault so surely their acc levies should reflect their input/damage, they also travel the most miles (or k's if you prefer). I have one of each vehicle but would prefer to use the m/c, cheaper on gas, but at $800 per year for the bike rego it will now be cheaper to run the 3.0litre v6 twin turbo,not the best for the environment but thats the govt's way for you. and i cant even take my frustration out slapping the children(only joking)

Comment by sbiddle, on 27-Oct-2009 17:29

I suggest you read a little more about ACC, the different funds that operate, how these are funded and what they cover.

I'm not for one minute suggesting that what ACC want to do is write - I'm merely point out that weekend sportspeople, pedestrians and cyslists are already covered under the general fund. Taxing cyclists individually would simply not be possible or enforceable, hence they come out of the general fund.

ACC no longer cross subsidise funds - to do so was absolutely crazy. If you're a motorcyclist (like a car owner) your treatment costs come from your own levy which funds your own fund. This is a basic requirement for full funding to occur.

Author's note by ockel, on 27-Oct-2009 18:06

Thanks for the comment.  I am aware of the different funds and their funding mechanism.  There is no "general fund" however.  Work, Earners, Non-Earners and Motor Vehicle accounts are the main funding groups. 

The motor vehicle fund for example is a collective for both cars and motorcycles.  There is not a separate motorcycle fund.  What is proposed is to reduce the funding deficit between the amount motorcyclists contribute to the motor vehicle account and the cost of injuries associated with motorcycles. 

The most significant issue with the proposed levy is that the ACC would like to force motorcycles to pay for their injuries.  In theory I have no issue with the concept however one must create a level playing field if one targets a specific group.  That level playing field is liability.  If you wish to charge motorcyclists with their costs it must be the costs that they are liable for - not the costs associated with that group irrespective of how the cost is incurred.

Taxing cyclists, pedestrians and sportspeople is relatively simple.  Levies to sporting bodies, a sales tax for equipment, an excess charged at time of injury or a general tax - the latter is the cost currently paid as part of the earners account.  So in fact you as a taxpayer subsidise injury costs for which non-work related injury incurrees are liable.  In much the same way as motorcyclists are liable for their injuries.  Apparently its okay for you to subsidise the pasttime of cycling but not the pasttime of motorcycling. 

Its a very short leap to requiring you to contribute to your rugby injury when you turn up at an Emergency Department.  No pay, no treatment.  Thats called America.  And you can guess that there will be differential costing for rugby injuries compared to tiddlywink injuries - very similar to the different premia paid for the work account.

The most important point you missed in my original post - at what point does my motorcycle riding cease to be a sport and become a ACC liable activity.  What makes me different to a sportsperson?  Or a cyclist?   

Comment by sleemanj, on 27-Oct-2009 23:15

There's little point trying to debate wether or not separate funding is fair when the ACC and government is using what can only be described as "made up maths" to justify it.

We need to get to the root of this issue, which is the figures that ACC and government are throwing about and how they got to them, because simply, they don't add up.  They are so far away FROM adding up it's just ridiculous, 100 million dollars out.  The figures are completely contradictory.

As BRONZ Auckland dude Les said on closeup the other night, the government claims after the changes drivers will still subsidise bikers by $77 each driver, that's two HUNDRED million dollars, a year, that's so far and away more than the total claims it's just nonsense.

ACC still have not coughed up with the actual data, they won't, they are stone walling every attempt, all you get out of them is this same summary with the same figures and no justification.

Comment by simon14, on 28-Oct-2009 14:28

It makes absolutely no difference whose fault the crash is.
Motorbike drivers know the risks involved.
If they are in a crash, they will most likely be much worse off than if they were in a car - it doesn’t matter whose fault the crash is, the fact is, the person on the bike had a choice to ride a bike or drive a car.
That choice has a cost associated with it – higher ACC levy’s.
I don’t know why they are complaining, the car drivers are still heavily subsidising the motorbike drivers even after the increases.
If you don’t like it, don’t ride a bike – simple.

Author's note by ockel, on 28-Oct-2009 14:45

In that case I have an exception to being taxed at source for cyclists injuries. 

Cyclists know the risks involved.

If they are in a crash, they will most likely be much worse off than if they were in a car - it doesn’t matter whose fault the crash is, the fact is, the person on the bike had a choice to ride a bike or drive a car.

However I dont have a choice to force the cyclists to pay for their injuries.  I get deductions from my income to pay for them. 
I dont cycle - I dont even own a cycle. 
Why should I have to pay for them?  I am, in your words, "heavily subsidising" the cyclists. 

Comment by stuzzo, on 28-Oct-2009 16:17

I would agree that most motorcycle accidents are not the fault of the rider but would also suggest that motorcyclists are, in general, big risk takers, especially on the open road.

I have sympathy for the argument that they shouldn't cover the costs of accidents they don't cause but, if you accept that the fees suggested are still heavily subsidised, they are not, in fact, being asked to.

Maybe we have to ask the question of weather modern road transport has a place for this more dangerous mode.

Comment by Not a Biker, on 28-Oct-2009 22:05

What? 200 million dollars divided by $77 per rider = 2.6 million motorcyclists (more or less). Those numbers don't add up either!

Comment by SIMON, on 18-Nov-2009 09:51

I have a suggestion then to all those car drivers who believe that motorcyclists know the risks on the roads. Yes, increase the levy for m/c BUT SLIGHTLY.Then when the accidents occur, investigate who is at fault. 9 times out of 10 the fault is with the car driver so make the car driver PAY ALL MEDICAL COSTS for the motorcylist. I ride a m/c and drive a car, and if i hit a motorcyclist with my car and it was deemed to be my fault, then i would be prepared to pay for that persons medical treatment. I think car drivers would be a bit more considerate on the roads if this was to happen.

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