PaddleNSW Advocacy and national levies within the hire-and-drive sector

In late April the paddling community was hit with a bombshell that the Federal Government intended doing a backflip and introducing hefty levies on canoes and kayaks within the Domestic Commercial Vessel Safety realm. This would have a devastating effect on commercial operators nationwide.

The commercial operators, plus peak governing bodies Australian Canoeing, PaddleNSW and our state counterparts around Australia were prompt to respond with industry and regulator lobbying.

Such lobbying and consultation immediately raised a number of issues in the proposed application of the levy to the unpowered hire-and-drive sector of domestic commercial vessels. The Government considered these issues and decided that the unpowered hire-and-drive sector (such as canoes and kayaks) will be exempted from the levy for the national system.

PaddleNSW is very pleased with the outcome. Our action was not just on behalf of our almost 2,000 members, but more importantly for all paddlers, commercial operators and all stakeholders involved in the close-knit paddling industry. We are satisfied and proud that our unified voice and advocacy role has contributed to a successful outcome in this issue. We will continue to lobby for the exemption to become an actual change of legislation.
Next time you or a mate wonder why we have state governing bodies and why do we pay fees to PaddleNSW and Australian Canoeing, please remember we are more than gold medals on a podium.
Enjoy your paddling. Peter Tate – PNSW CEO