Tuesday 19 June 2007 - Estimates Committee B (Cox) - Part 1

2.4 Vehicle Registration –


Mr FINCH - We have not heard a great deal about the new motor registry project, a project involving more than $16 million. Some $5.2 million is being allocated this financial year. Can you summarise, please, what is involved with the motor registry project?

Mr COX - I can do better than that. I have Chris Wells here from the motor registry. Mr Wells has had the dubious honour of being involved with this program from day one, and if anybody can give you a detailed summary of it there would be none better than Mr Wells.

Mr WELLS - Thank you. We have reached a very interesting stage with the motor registry project, because we have engaged a developer to undertake the work necessary to develop the new Tasmanian motor registry.  To date we have been doing a lot of work in looking at the requirements for the new motor registry, making sure that we fully understood those.  There are some national initiatives with links to Tasmania to be adhered to, particularly the national exchange of vehicle and driver information system, NEVDIS, which principally is around one driver, one licence.  Steps are being taken to ensure that rebirthing and stolen motor vehicles can be dealt with very efficiently through the various systems. That has been working.

Rather than saying, ' Is Tasmania different?' we have asked whether we can look at what has been happening around Australia with other jurisdictions to see how their systems work. As a consequence of that work, we entered into a licence agreement with the ACT Government to utilise the system it introduced in 2003. We have looked at that system and that will be the basis for developing Tasmania's new system. We will be using that as a base and adopt it wherever we can, and undertake only those adaptations that are necessary to meet Tasmania's business requirements.

Mr FINCH - What are the main benefits of this new system?

Mr WELLS - It depends on the perspective, but if we talk about clients specifically - the citizens of Tasmania - there will be a lot of benefits for them in transferring any licences either to Tasmania or interstate.  That will be done a lot more efficiently.  As you may be aware, there will be a lot more emphasis on the driver's licence as an evidence of identity document, particularly through the changes that have been made to the Electoral Act late last year that mean that people are now having to use their driver's licence as their principal source of identity, together with the Commonwealth government initiative of the document verification service where a driver's licence and birth certificate are checked online.  We will have the ability to be able to transact those in a much more efficient way.

We are looking to see if we can get a system whereby individual clients and licence holders can check via the web how many demerit points they might have.  At the moment those people have to come into an office or make an inquiry over the phone, which requires their giving identity and so on.  We are making sure that there are checks and balances in there.  It will be a lot smoother way of transacting business.

For the government, in a technical sense, because we are picking up the ACT system, we are not only avoiding a lot of costs but also minimising risk.  We are also picking up one of the other major initiatives for the government - monetary penalties.  We are making sure that we are not re-inventing wheels.  From a policing aspect, it will provide a lot smoother way for police and transport inspectors to get information from the motor registry system.  There is a range of benefits across the various stakeholders.