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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 10 Hansard (26 November) . . Page.. 3043 ..

MR SMYTH (continuing):

Mr Speaker, this Bill and the Motor Traffic (Alcohol and Drugs) (Amendment) Bill (No. 2) contain amendments which will improve road safety, allow greater efficiency in regulatory practice and deal with anomalies existing in the current

Firstly, the Bill introduces legislation to reduce the power and performance capabilities of motorcycles ridden by novice riders. All other States and the Northern Territory have similar legislation in place. We can no longer rely on good road design and traffic engineering processes to keep the road toll down while the performance capabilities of motorcycles increase with every new model. Novice motorcycle rider fatalities remain a major concern to all who seek to address road deaths among young people.

As is the practice everywhere else in Australia, learner riders will not be permitted to ride a motorcycle which has an engine capacity greater than 260 millilitres or a power-weight ratio greater than 150 kilowatts per tonne. These restrictions will also apply for the first year a provisional licence is held. The message for novice riders is quite clearly that youth and enthusiasm are no substitute for experience when riding modern high performance motorcycles. The amendment will add support to the novice rider training programs currently in place in the ACT, and keep Canberra at the forefront of motorcycle rider safety legislation.

Secondly, Mr Speaker, the Bill introduces into the ACT multiple-bay parking meters. A single parking meter for each parking bay is no longer necessary as modern parking meters can now control a number of parking bays. Existing law requires a meter to be placed adjacent to each parking bay. The Act will be amended to allow a single meter to control a designated number of parking bays which are clearly identified for users. The introduction of multi-bay meters will improve visual amenity by reducing the number of meters needed to control parking. It will also increase efficiency and reduce government costs associated with this activity.

A third amendment to the Act will allow the Registrar of Motor Vehicles to cancel a licence or registration when payment is made by a cheque which is subsequently dishonoured. This has not been possible in the past. Before a cancellation occurs, the registrar will write to the person concerned giving him or her two weeks to make the payment. If payment is not made by the end of that period, the licence or registration will be suspended for two weeks. If this two-week period of suspension lapses before payment is made, cancellation will take effect following advice of this in writing.

The NRMA will be notified in cases where the third-party insurance premium is paid with the same cheque so that the policy can be cancelled at the same time as the vehicle registration. The NRMA will remain on risk until cancellation occurs.

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