From Monday 4 May 2015, the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator will coordinate the process for all oversize/overmass (OSOM), agricultural and special purpose vehicle permits from start to finish.
"This is a return to standard operations under the Heavy Vehicle National Law following consultation with the Tasmanian Department of State Growth," said NHVR Chief Executive, Sal Petroccitto.
Currently, while Tasmanian oversize and overmass operators apply directly to the NHVR, the application is forwarded to the Department of State Growth who coordinate local government road manager approvals, as well as assessing the suitability of their own state routes. Once access decisions are made, the NHVR then issues the appropriate permit to the operator.
"The arrangements in Tasmania were a temporary measure to assist the NHVR, and the return of the coordination of the road manager component (both local and state government) allows State Growth resources to focus on other priorities," said Penny Nicholls, Department of State Growth, General Manager Road User Services.
"We're very grateful to State Growth for their local knowledge and operational support over the past year, which included embedding departmental staff in our offices for period of time," said Mr Petroccitto.
"We have significantly boosted our capacity to track and report on all classes of permit applications at every stage of the process. We plan to offer that real-time visibility to all participants in the process, including heavy haulage operators.
"We are aiming to provide access to the NHVR application tracker to all industry customers, so they can track the process via an online counter on the NHVR website and know where their application is at all times," he said.
Tasmanian Transport Association (TTA) Executive Director, Robin Phillips, supported the move back to the NHVR to manage heavy haulage permits as a step in the right direction.
"This is a sensible approach to managing heavy haulage vehicles in Tasmania and the TTA welcomes all measures that simplify the permit process and allow operators to concentrate on what they do best – transporting goods across Tasmania," said Mr Phillips.
"Excellent progress has been made so far, but we still have a bit of work to do to ensure a smooth permit process for the transport operators. We look forward to working with the NHVR, State Growth and local governments in further improving the OSOM permit approval process in Tasmania," he said.
Mr Petroccitto said the Regulator was also strongly focused on cutting unnecessary red tape for operators, particularly through route pre-approvals that reduce the initial demand for permits.
"The more we can agree on what vehicles can go where, the more upfront certainty we can offer operators and the less paperwork we all have to manage," said Mr Petroccitto.