RSRT review still under wraps almost one year on

By: Brad Gardner

Federal Government continues to dodge questions on when it will release the review of the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal.

RSRT review still under wraps almost one year on
Federal employment minister Eric Abetz.


The review of the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal (RSRT) remains under wraps almost one year after it was completed and handed to the Federal Government.

The office of employment minister Eric Abetz continues to remain vague on when it will release the findings from Rex Deighton-Smith, who was appointed in late 2013 to determine if the RSRT was an effective means of improving safety in the trucking industry.

When asked to provide a date on when the report – and the Government’s response to it – will be made public, a spokesman for employment minister Eric Abetz responded: "The Government is carefully considering the report."

Abetz late last year told Parliament there was no evidence to justify the creation of the RSRT, which former prime minister Julia Gillard introduced in 2012.

The Federal Government was also asked if it supported the ongoing operation of the RSRT and if the agency was necessary to improve safety.

"We believe that the best way that we can improve road safety is by upgrading roads and as a result this government has made the largest ever investment in infrastructure," the spokesman for Abetz says.

The Federal Government dropped hints to the trucking industry throughout 2014 that it was planning to do away with the tribunal, but it will struggle to push ahead with its plans due to the make-up of the Senate.

The Greens, independent senators John Madigan and Nick Xenophon and Motoring Enthusiasts Party senator Ricky Muir have all announced their support for the RSRT, denying the Government the numbers it needs to pass legislation to axe the tribunal.

The RSRT is continuing its work, despite the uncertainty about its future.

It has started an inquiry into the practices of the waste management sector – one of a number of investigations it is due to conduct in 2015.

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