Liberals to cut rego by $100 in suite of car-friendly policies

Ian Bushnell 15 September 2020 36
Nicole Lawder, Candice Burch and Alistair Coe

The Canberra Liberals’ Urban Services spokesperson, Nicole Lawder, Transport spokesperson Candice Burch and Leader Alistair Coe at Woden for the announcement. Photo: Ian Bushnell.

The Canberra Liberals have unveiled a suite of policies designed to drive down the cost of motoring in the ACT, including a $100 cut to car registration but they have refused to say how they will pay for it.

The rego policy will cost $25 million a year or $100 million over four years, and continues the Liberals’ targeting of the hip pocket nerve, but like the party’s promised rates freeze, Leader Alistair Coe has ignored questions about how it will be delivered, sticking to well-rehearsed lines about lower taxes and better services.

Mr Coe accused the government of gouging Canberrans, although the cost of registering a vehicle has fallen since the government’s Compulsory Third Party insurance reforms.

Mr Coe says his plan would save the typical two-car Canberra family about $200 a year from 1 January.

He said the lower rego would be in line with that of NSW, and it made sense to match what people pay in Queanbeyan.

The Liberals will also make night-time parking after 5.30 pm free for six months and deliver about 2,500 new parking spaces, mainly across Canberra’s smaller group centres, through its $50 million Local Parking Fund.

Care registration cost table

The Canberra Liberals say families will save around $100 per year. Image: Canberra Liberals.

Urban Services spokesperson Nicole Lawder said that a Liberal government would identify the parking gaps and roll out the new spaces over four years.

She said the city car parks would also benefit from a ”green” makeover including grass, vegetation and trees, as part of the party’s Million Trees pledge.

The party also plans a city-wide trial of transferable parking tickets across government car parks.

On the city’s roads, vehicles carrying three or more passengers will be able to use transit lanes, currently the preserve of buses and taxis, and new technologies will be trialled to improve traffic flows and introduce real-time monitoring to alert drivers to road construction works so they can plan their daily travel better.

Transport spokesperson Candice Burch said Labor and the Greens were punishing people for using their cars.

”We, of course, want more Canberrans to use public transport and active travel; however, we also acknowledge that these are just not viable options for many Canberra families, and many Canberrans do need to rely on their vehicles to get to and from their work and to and from school,” she said.

Mr Coe would not say whether the Liberals would be abandoning or changing the current Transport Strategy or how the ACT would achieve its greenhouse gas emission goals under these car-friendly policies.

But he said he would have more to say on a public transport policy Canberrans would want to use, not be forced to use.

Chief Minister Andrew Barr said the Liberals’ rego plan would mean a lot less revenue to deliver services, and if there was a cut to revenue there had to be a commensurate cut to services.

He said the government’s CTP reforms had delivered a $60 reduction in motorists’ combined CTP/registration costs.

A Labor spokesperson also said the Liberals needed to explain where these new car parks will be and what green space they would take away, just like they need to explain how they will spend more money, without cutting services or growing government debt.

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36 Responses to Liberals to cut rego by $100 in suite of car-friendly policies
azel azel 9:04 pm 18 Sep 20

We’re complaining about how this is costed. But were not asking about the rail and the hospital plus the massive debt

George Watling George Watling 10:38 pm 16 Sep 20

Lets have some love for Electric Vehicles too. Let give them lower rego rates.

Charles Landwehr Charles Landwehr 6:24 pm 16 Sep 20

Clare Thomas there are no parking spaces anywhere so you take the Bus or Tram.

Renga Rajan Renga Rajan 5:41 pm 16 Sep 20

Exceptionally bad policy in so many different ways. Where do I begin?

Leo Menssen Leo Menssen 11:45 am 16 Sep 20

I Liberal bribe will never get my vote.

Clare Thomas Clare Thomas 7:10 am 16 Sep 20

Why do this? We need to be reducing fuel usage across Australia and the world not encouraging greater use.

dukethunder dukethunder 9:34 pm 15 Sep 20

How about ‘Pay as you go’ rego. Set a daily registration cost(not inflated, based on current rates), individuals register their vehicle for a minimum 24-48 hr period, when they choose to use it. Win for everyone. Outside of government coffers

Jorge Gatica Jorge Gatica 9:18 pm 15 Sep 20

Funny how a lot of people are asking how the liberals will pay for a $100 reduction in rego, I ask, how is the current labor/greens government going to pay for the $500 million hospital expansion? The 1.9 billion tram? The $50 million and the free rego for electric cars the greens are promising????

Brenton Higgins Brenton Higgins 9:12 pm 15 Sep 20


Stephen Page-Murray Stephen Page-Murray 8:42 pm 15 Sep 20

ACT Liberals are recognised by the rest of the state/territory/Liberals as fruit loops.

chewy14 chewy14 8:15 pm 15 Sep 20

Ssek, how much do you think is spent on “gay roundabouts”?

The facts are that the Liberals are clearly making promises with no idea how they are actually going to pay for them if they get into power. Now that’s understandable considering the length of time the ALP has been in power, but to ignore it is real head in the sand stuff.

Whilst there is definitely plenty of efficiency gains that could be made by the government, over 80% of expenditure is on absolute core services like Health, Education, Policing and the like.

Both parties are making promises that simply cannot be delivered without increasing taxes or reducing services in other areas, but the Libs are really starting to stretch their grip with reality in order to win.

Candy and election bribes for everyone!!

    JS9 JS9 12:32 pm 16 Sep 20

    The liberals would romp it in if they had any resemblance of a well formed plan as to how they are going to fund their promises – beyond ‘we will grow the magic pudding’, which seems to be where they are at as it stands.

    It’s clear, despite the ample opportunities presented to them by a very poor quality government (in terms of fiscal management) that they’ve done very little thinking at this point in that regard – or else even worse, they have done the thinking and want to hide it until after the election.

    chewy14 chewy14 12:45 pm 16 Sep 20

    I can forgive some of their lack of detailed thinking because they clearly lack the resources of the government to be able to analyse and cost specific plans.

    But on the other hand, they are clearly attempting to go the populist vote buying route for this election, hoping they can win first, then work out how to actually deliver on anything after the election. It doesn’t bode well.

HiddenDragon HiddenDragon 8:00 pm 15 Sep 20

Not sure that a $100 rego cut is the best way to spend $25m p.a., but this really is a bit rich –

“…just like they need to explain how they will spend more money, without cutting services or growing government debt.”

We don’t have balanced budget legislation in the ACT, and there is no reason to believe that the budget deficits projected by the current government (just like all the deficits they have had in previous years) are Goldilocks-fashion – just right – so the idea that any departure from those figures is reckless and requires detailed explanation and justification is spin, coming as it does from people who are fond of pointing out (when it suits) that “borrowing has never been cheaper”.

    chewy14 chewy14 9:09 am 16 Sep 20

    Just because they’re hypocrites, doesn’t mean they’re wrong though.

    The Liberals are running on a platform of lower costs of living and better economic management so they should outline how they are going to pay for these promises seeing as they are so critical of the current government for the exact same thing.

    JS9 JS9 12:36 pm 16 Sep 20

    The concern HD is that a lot of these announcements are actually cutting into the revenue base of the territory – the freeze on rates, the reduction here, talk at times of payroll tax abolishment (That seems to have gone quiet so maybe on the back burner now).

    While its clear we can’t borrow forever in a day as we seem to be now under labour, equally the plan shouldn’t just be to buy votes by giving away significant elements that provide significant revenue to government. The Territory has a relatively limited tax base compared to other jurisdictions – and eventually, there is going to have be substantials cuts to something to offset this.

    Its no different to the C/W level, with Morrison by all reports planning to bring forward tax cuts earlier than planned. It has a huge budget deficit too that is not under control, yet they want to cut revenue in…. it doesn’t really compute.

    If the liberals had demonstrated a broader plan beyond ‘growing the pie’ as to how they will offset these impacts, then their plan might have credibility. But yet again, it appears they truly have no idea, or are hiding what they plan to cut. And its been demonstrated on multiple occasions, such an approach is unlikely to win over those voters it needs to in the Territory for them to form government.

Scott Humphries Scott Humphries 6:18 pm 15 Sep 20

Is it fair to call these statements a "suite of policies" ?

ssek ssek 6:11 pm 15 Sep 20

Ahhh, the usual Labor shills singing the same “How will they pay for it?” song, and their backup shills answering the predictable “Cuts to jobs and services!”.

Maybe they will pay for it by being fiscally responsible and not wasting millions of dollars every year on things like gay roundabouts and crossing signals. Imagine that. Reducing the cost of living by not wasting money on nonsense. Ungeard of in the ACT, I know…

    JS9 JS9 8:52 pm 15 Sep 20

    While I have no particular like or dislike for the items you speak of, in the scheme of a multi billion dollar budget, they aren’t even a rounding error.

    The liberals already have promises out there giving away 200m+ in revenue over the next few years. Its not small biscuits, and there is zero evidence of how they intend to offset said reductions bar ‘we’ll make the pie bigger’….. neoliberal dribble in short.

    I don’t know what is unreasonable in asking how they intend to fund their promises, or make up for given up revenue…

    ssek ssek 2:34 pm 16 Sep 20

    Again, a little fiscal responsibility rather than wasting money on virtue signalling and a multi billion dollar train set that is nothing but a money pit will more than make up for 200mil. The two examples of money wastage were simply examples.

    chewy14 chewy14 7:40 pm 16 Sep 20

    Can you explain what areas you see for some “fiscal responsibility”?

    The Liberals are saying they are supportive of light rail, so you can’t use that one despite my agreeance that the next stages are not viable currently.

    Just like the Liberals statements, your claims need to be backed up with more specifics rather than vague claims of somehow being able to deliver more for less.

    ssek ssek 12:51 pm 17 Sep 20

    The only person making a claim of delivering more for less has been you. I’m pointing out that not wasting money will more than pay for fee reductions and rate freezes. Not once have I said anything about delivering additional services.

    chewy14 chewy14 8:08 am 19 Sep 20

    Except you can’t tell us where you think you would find this “wasted” money.

    Read my comment above, the vast majority of the government budget goes to delivering core services.

    So your claims about waste are just motherhood statements without some actual detail.

    You would either have to cut services or somehow make them more efficient to find this additional money to pay for the promises being made.

    The whole problem is there’s not an iota of information about how this would be achieved.

    Which is what people are calling the Liberals and yourself out for.

    So please sir, some detail.

David Sutton David Sutton 5:57 pm 15 Sep 20

They need to sort out caravan and trailer rego. For my caravan $750 in ACT $68 in Victoria. Guess where most Canberra ppl have their caravans stored. It is a bit easy to work out.

Peter Richardson Peter Richardson 5:48 pm 15 Sep 20

Woohoo, a $2/week saving. What will i do with my new found wealth...

Julia Nesbitt Julia Nesbitt 5:37 pm 15 Sep 20

Bit out of touch in terms of envionment.

Mac John Mac John 5:15 pm 15 Sep 20

Pay by increase in bus fares and other cost that will result in increase in people living in poverty!

Steve Jones Steve Jones 4:20 pm 15 Sep 20

So what do ACT residents pay for rego?? Interested to hear

Rachael Paulka Rachael Paulka 3:34 pm 15 Sep 20

It's not enough. Rego is ridiculously expensive in Canberra.

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