RHA chief warns customers and the Tories
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• Warnings of rate increases, a caution to the Tory party and an attack on the RTITB were the main ingredients of a speech made by Mr Noel Wynn, RHA national chairman, in Bristol on Friday, at the Western area dinner.
Mr Wynn told the customers who were present that a rates increase was inevitable and while he did not mention a figure, a number of operators later expressed the opinion that it could be substantial. One suggestion was 25 per cent.
It is understood, writes lain Sherriff, that the express carriers group of the RHA will shortly be examining costs and will recommend to its members a rates increase to take effect from September 1. There are likely to be similar recommendations from other groups following their own costs examinations.
Mr Wynn was replying to Mr R. Sharpies MP, vice-chairman of the Conservative and Unionist party, who had told the 300-strong audience that his party would repeal special authorizations if they were returned to power. Mr Wynn said he welcomed the confirmation that this would happen but he asked the Tory party to state now what it would introduce instead of special authorizations. "We certainly cannot continue as we are at present with both operators' and carriers' licences", he said.
The RHA chairman referred to a statement by Mr lain Macleod, the shadow Chancellor, following the Budget when he promised to abolish SET and reduce income tax. "If these things are going to happen, where are you going to get the money from? If you think you can come again to an already over-taxed haulage industry then I can tell you now, you. have another think coming,said Mr Wynn.
He then turned to the Industrial Training Act and the RTITB. "What a Frankenstein has been set up here", he said. He stated that hauliers had always believed that education mattered and never more so than at the present time when so many onerous requirements were being laid on the industry by legislation. In such circumstances hauliers ought to thank heaven for the RTITB, but -1 cannot say that I have heard many shouts of praise or even more restrained commendations." Mr Wynn suggested that now was the time when Parliament should look at the Industrial Training Act.. to see how it was working in practice. He thought the transport industry was not alone in its dissatisfaction. There were flaws which required amending legislation, and it was absurd and an undemocratic nonsense that those who paid the piper had no genuine power to call the tune.