I recently registered for 12 months a large motorcycle and a diesel ute. I was surprised to find the ACC component of the ute's rego was higher than that of the bike. Why is this?
Malcolm Joynt, Ruawai.
At the risk of sounding patronising, I am assuming that you relicensed your vehicles, Mr Joynt. Briefly, registration is the process where you get number plates for your vehicle and the Government finds out who you are and where you live. Licensing is the process of acquiring a sticker to say that you have paid for the privilege of driving on New Zealand roads.
I am also assuming that your motorbike is petrol-powered. Petrol is taxed by the Government both at the pump, when you refuel, and as part of your relicensing fee. The tax is called an ACC levy, and is paid into the Government's Motor Vehicle Account. Currently, the petrol levy is 9.9c/litre of petrol.
Diesel is not taxed at the pump, as only a small proportion of diesel is used for powering vehicles that travel on public roads. The rest is for power generators, boats, trains and other industrial purposes.
To keep things fair, so that everyone pays a share of the Motor Vehicle Account, drivers or licensers of diesel vehicles pay their full share of the ACC levy in their licensing fee.
Thus, the ACC component of your ute's rego will be higher than that for your petrol motorbike.
The ACC Motor Vehicle Account pays for claims made by people injured in accidents on public roads.
My 11-year-old daughter looks quite mature for her age. She likes to bus into the city to meet me after work in Albert St on Fridays and she has now had at least three bus drivers ask for proof of age in order to buy a child's ticket.
She has explained that she is only 11 and in fact, only started intermediate school at the beginning of this term. At that age they still don't have official student ID cards so we're wondering what she should carry with her to present in these situations.
Would a photocopy of her birth certificate or passport be appropriate? I'm concerned that she could find herself stranded as a couple of the drivers have warned that she won't be allowed on their buses again if she cannot furnish the proof required.
Louise Richardson, Auckland.
Mark Hannan of Auckland Transport says that they do get asked this from time to time. It's my view that carrying a copy of a birth certificate or passport is a risk should said document be mislaid.
AT has a better plan. Mr Hannan says there is a process where children (if experiencing difficulties) can be issued with an AT Student ID Card to use for children's fares.
They just need to ring the Auckland Transport Contact Centre (09 366 6400) and AT will send them a form and when that's returned with some supporting documentation and a photo, a card will be sent to them.