23 Jul 2015

Setting of ACC premiums slammed

1:06 pm on 23 July 2015

BusinessNZ has slammed the Government's recent setting of ACC premiums, saying it reeked of political interference and made public consultation on setting the levies a farce.

Its economist John Pask told MPs the setting of ACC levies shouldn't be subject to political manipulation like it says happened in 2014.

Mr Pask said while the ACC Amendment Bill would help prevent political interference he said the Government's financial position should not be a consideration when setting the levy.

"The state of the Government's fiscal position should not be a consideration when they're setting ACC levies.

"The fact is the ACC scheme's levies are based on particular accounts it can't be used for other purposes, so we don't see any justification for using it for other purposes."

The Labour Party's ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney said BusinessNZ's submission was damning.

"When you see coming before select committee causing the Government of political interference and asking for an amendment to ensure the Government can't use ACC levies to prop up their fiscal strategy again, I think that's a really big incitement on the Government."

BusinessNZ also called for cross-subsidies within the ACC system, such as those for motorcyclists, to be made clear.

Meanwhile, ACC minister Nikki Kaye said the Government has begun working on changes that will make the playing field fairer for people mounting legal challenges to ACC after a report concluded it was futile for ordinary New Zealanders to fight decisions through the court system.

Get the new RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs