ACC minister Nick SmithTuesday 16 February 2010, 2:04PM
Media release from ACC minister Nick Smith
ACC Minister Nick Smith today welcomed the report back to
Parliament on the ACC Reform Bill saying the recommendations will
help secure the long-term future of the accident compensation
"The Transport and Industrial Relations Committee has endorsed the
reforms in this Bill and recommended only minor changes and
clarifications in response to public submissions," Dr Smith said.
"With ACC claim costs having risen 57% in the past four years -
five times the rate of inflation - and the unfunded liabilities
having grown from $4 billion to $13 billion, changing the law is
necessary to ensure ACC is affordable, sustainable and fair for
claimants and levy payers."
Key changes to ACC in the Bill include:
- Extending full funding date from 2014 to 2019
- Reversing 2008 income compensation extensions covering casuals,
part-timers, non-earners and abatements for holiday pay
- Reversing vocational rehabilitation changes
- Introducing 6% hearing loss threshold
- Reversing entitlements for wilfully self-inflicted injury and
- Strengthening disentitlements for criminals
- Enabling safety incentives for employers and vehicle
- Requiring far more open reporting on ACC's liabilities
"The levy increases proposed by ACC's Board last year under the
current law are too much for New Zealanders to pay," Dr Smith said.
"The changes the Government is making will more than halve these
increases easing the impact on households, workers, businesses and
"This legislative reform is part of the Government's objective to
secure the long-term future of ACC as an efficient and fair 24/7,
no fault insurance scheme for all New Zealanders."