Tuesday, October 20, 2009

National on ACC

Just in case anyone has any doubts that National will give ACT what it wants and use them as an excuse for ACC privatisation, here's their ACC policy [PDF] and policy backgrounder [PDF] from the 2008 election. The latter is quite explicit:

The experience of competition in the late 1990’s was healthy for ACC. Levy rates are now substantially lower as a result of that experience, and the ongoing prospect of competition. The current Government has retained the facility by which larger employers are able, as accredited employers, to opt out of the state monopoly, self-insure, and use a private administrator as the case manager.

It would not be possible now to replicate the large levy reductions that characterised the 1998 reforms. However, the National Party believes there is further scope to improve delivery of the scheme through the introduction of competition and choice.


The National Party is committed to the principles of competition and choice as the appropriate means of ensuring efficiency of ACC provision, and increasing incentives for improved workplace safety and better rehabilitation of accident victims.

Note that National admits that this will not be any cheaper for the public of New Zealand - there will be no "large levy reductions". The move is purely ideological, the benefits accruing solely to the insurance industry. Fairytales about employers "choosing" to pay more to provide greater cover to their workers (yeah, right) don't change that one iota.

Interestingly according to the policy backgrounder National opposed part-charges. Now they're considering a universal $50 or $100 excess to discourage claims. So much for consistency.