New registration rules put pressure on tractor dealers

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New rules for the registration of vehicles are putting undue pressure on tractor dealers, according to Paul Connaughton T.D.

“This issue was brought to my attention in recent days by local tractor dealers and is something that is causing great difficulty for tractor dealers in County Galway.  Tractor dealers now have to bring the vehicle to be registered to a specified NCT centre, which in the case of Galway means either going to Galway City, Athlone, Castlerea in County Roscommon or Nenagh in County Tipperary.

“Driving to the centre is not an option, because of the slow moving nature of the vehicles. This means loading the tractor onto a lorry or trailer and bringing it a round trip, very often over 100 km, then paying the inspection fee and VRT. Alternatively, companies with 15 vehicles to inspect can pay €300 to have a member of the NCT staff come out and inspect the vehicles, but this does not apply for small tractor dealers who would not have such numbers of tractors in stock.

“For decades, small farmers in the west of Ireland have been buying second hand tractors imported from England and elsewhere and this business has sustained many families in local areas. Now, the unnecessary level of bureaucracy is putting these jobs at risk throughout rural Ireland. These extra costs will cause many small businesses to close at a time when we as a country have to do everything in our power to sustain as many jobs as possible.

“The current system is overly cumbersome and exorbitantly expensive for tractor dealers.  I have written to the Minister for Environment about the matter and believe that this is something that the Minister could and should take action on. A mechanism should be put in place whereby reputable dealers can register with the Revenue Commissioners and avail of a much more user-friendly and cost-effective mechanism to register tractors, while still adhering to all the necessary rules and regulations in terms of vehicle registration.”