RMS Light Vehicle Policy dispute update - Public Service Association

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Friday, 15 March 2019

RMS Light Vehicle Policy dispute update


RMS Light Vehicle Policy dispute update – March 2019 (PDF version)

The PSA would like to address the RMS correspondence to COI staff on 12 March. The PSA is disappointed with the conflicting messages from the RMS in short periods of time as CaRS Management adopts policy on the run.

Member are reminded of the direction provided by the Senior Manager Compliance Operations on 19 December 2018. Below is an extract.

RMS Staff should be commencing work at their home station, collecting an RMS vehicle to then attend off site premises, whether that be fleet or HVIS sites. Where possible rosters should be amended to accommodate travel time, and where not possible travel time claims are to be submitted. Overtime claims will not be considered for travel between a home station and attending an off-site premises.

I remind each of you that you are required to comply with the requirements of the Light vehicle policy and no exceptions will be provided for as of COB 21 December 2018.

I also remind you that any breach of the policy will be taken seriously by RMS and could lead to disciplinary action being taken, against the individual and supervisor/manager for failing to implement the light vehicle policy.

RMS Operational Managers and Sector Managers interpreted this as all activities and this was subsequently relayed to COIs. It makes no distinction for HVSS, HVCS or roadside, and only lists two examples being fleet and HVIS.

The RMS have subsequently provided the PSA and combined unions with a ‘position’ on 28 February 2019 that advised the PSA that some worksites do not require the use of an RMS fleet vehicle. The RMS position is that staff can be directed to temporary work locations using their own devices to get to and from those HVIS and HVSS sites. When the PSA sought to print the ‘position’ in order to inform members of the process, the PSA was advised that this was a proposal, further work was required and it was premature to provide the substance.

For COI reference, the Award clauses that relate to a direction to work at temporary worksite are located in 19.2 Travel Compensation, 19.2.1 Fares, 19.2.2. Travelling Time and 19.2.3 Payment for Travelling & Waiting Time.

The ‘position’ and the direction of 19 December are now incongruent. The PSA now questions whether the direction of 19 December stands, albeit with the understanding now that the previous overtime claims should be reviewed. The PSA view is that they should be paid as soon as possible.

The PSA maintains that to attend all temporary worksites, the fleet vehicle is necessary. The PSA expects that consultation and as much as possible, agreement, on which temporary worksites would be subject to this change in work practices. If staff members are directed to attend temporary work locations before that consultation occurs, the PSA will immediately seek to relist the current dispute.

The PSA advises members who are directed to work at fleet sites and HVIS in shift to appropriately adjust their workload for the time taken to travel to and from your home location. PSA members should not reduce the regulatory requirements of inspections to fit into reduced working hours. If fleet operators who have booked in vehicles months in advance are disadvantaged, tell them to be in contact with the RMS.

The RMS position seems to change like the wind as they try desperately to shoe horn the Light Vehicle Fleet Policy into the COI operation. Maybe the RMS should consider putting more energy into paying COIs properly for the work they do or developing a proper plan for on-road compliance and regulation. The current ill-informed policy dismantles the regulation of heavy vehicles in NSW.

The PSA asks, what more needs to be shown in terms of the reduction in service and how much more money needs to be expended before RMS CaRS management admit that this is bad policy?