The Government has finally confirmed the temporary cut in Road User Charges will take effect from April 21.
Road User Charges will be cut by 36 per cent across all rates for three months.
It is the last step in the Government’s response to the global energy crisis. A drop in fuel excise tax and public transport fares have already come into effect.
A change in RUC rates took much longer because of the necessary paperwork. NZ Autocar later learnt from the National Party the law requires 42 days of notice before changing RUC rates.
“The law clearly never anticipated a reduction in RUC rates,” National’s transport spokesperson Simeon Brown said.
Transport Minister Michael Wood says the drop in RUCs will come as a relief for the heavy vehicle sector.
“This reduction in road user charges will decrease the operating costs for light and heavy diesel vehicles.
“The reduced RUC rates will also make it cheaper to transport goods and services and for families to get where they need to go.”
The National Party said they had asked the Government to accelerate the process to give diesel users relief faster.
Motorists cannot take advantage of the system and buy RUCs in bulk during the three months.
“To discourage bulk purchasing, those purchasing road user charges during the period of the reduction will be required to complete an online declaration form stating that they are only purchasing charges that they require for that period,” Wood said.
The New Zealand Transport Agency will follow up on any big purchases they deem suspicious during this time.
“Enforcement action could include the charging of unused road user charges at the non-reduced rate.”
Not everyone is onboard with the idea of the RUC drop.
The Green Party labelled the law change as “subsidies for fossil fuels.”