Tuesday 15 August 2019

Hansard of the Legislative Council
BILL 2019 (No. 17)
Second Reading


Mr FINCH (Rosevears) - Mr President, I support the bill, but I am rising to speak because the member for Hobart has helped me recall a story I ran by him some time ago in Hobart, about when I was trying to use one of the newfangled parking machines in Hobart for the first time.

Mr Valentine - This is not the place to lobby, Mr Finch.

Mr FINCH - No, I tried that and I came a gutser.  Do not worry, but it was unfortunate.  I was trying to work it out with the instructions on the side of the parking meter.  I wanted to go to the bank just a block away.  I am on my way to pay a bill and I want to go to the NAB bank and -

Mr Willie - In Balmain.

Mr FINCH - Yes, laugh though you may.  I did not hear the interjection so I do not know what you are laughing at.  You had another shot at me last night which I did not hear but it came up pretty well in Hansard.  So, keep it up.

I have a parking meter a block away from the bank and I want to pay the parking meter.  The instructions are on the side, on the front, all around.  I could not understand what the hell was going on - how you actually make this transaction with the parking meter.  I was under a little pressure to get to the bank and get this bill paid so I looked around for somebody to help me.  Is there a pedestrian in the street who can help me?  I could get nobody.  No local could help me.  So, I thought, 'Look, it is only down the street.  I will whip down, I will hotfoot it down, get the money and come straight back'. 

I was gone for about four minutes and 30 seconds but when I came back, in the meantime I had been given a ticket.

Ms Forrest - They were waiting for you.  They were watching.

Mr FINCH - No, well, they did recognise me, so probably yes.

It is very frustrating.  I pleaded my case to the council.  I wrote an email pleading my case, saying it was the first time I had ever used the parking meter.  I normally have the parking space down here at Parliament House but my pleas fell on very deaf ears, which I have a problem with, so we are in the same boat.

It was very frustrating.  So, while the member for Hobart speaks about a technology and oh, you just do this, you just get the app and you just whip it in - he is a whiz at technology.

Mr Valentine - It is easy.

Mr FINCH - We are dragging the general public, I believe, kicking and screaming into this new style of operation, using your phone and your app and all that sort of thing.  There are people out there who have no comprehension of this, who do not want to embrace it.  They keep it as a barrier and do not embrace it, so I think there has to be some sympathy for people who do not understand how this new technology works.

You say they have to get up to speed.  Many people are just not going to do that.  I want to, but as I say, it is understanding the instructions as well.  It is gobbledegook when you see it for the first time and being in a bit of a rush, you try to understand it.  I just make that contribution, but of course it is modernity, it is contemporary.

Mr Gaffney - How much was your fine?

Mr FINCH - About $75 or something so it was not inexpensive to have that impost when I thought I had been caught quite innocently.

Mr Gaffney - Because you complained, they could have bumped it up to $210.

Mr FINCH - I might still get a message in the mail that they have changed their mind.  However, I will support the bill.

Mr Valentine - Before the member sits down, the difficulty is that when you park on those parking meters there is a sensor that says there is a car here and they know it has not been paid for.

Ms Forrest - I do not know if they have them in Launceston. They have them in Hobart.

Mr FINCH - This is more technology I do not understand.  I do not want to, either.

Mr PRESIDENT - We will find out what they have in Launceston.