Dave’s getting the party started
EIGHT months ago truckie Dave Sweeny started his own political party.
Now, with nearly 1000 members from across Australia, he plans on registering the party.
"The initial aim is to get someone into the senate," he said.
As it grows he hopes to have representatives elected in each state.
He's already got a charter and policies that he believes are "pretty good".
"It's not just transport, it can benefit Australia as a whole," he said.
"The majority is common sense."
He's got policies on immigration to unemployment, training and education.
Relating to heavy vehicles he said training kids from a young age about the road and trucks would help with many issues on the road.
Mr Sweeny said he was taught "road craft" by his father and how to interact on the road and help others.
He learnt to drive a truck at home before he got his licence and wants more people to learn this way.
An apprenticeship system for heavy vehicle drivers, similar to the American CDL system where people start in the warehouse then progress on to driving, is what he would like to see implemented here.
On driving Mr Sweeny wants Australia's "third class" roads all dual laned with better planned roadside facilities with solar powered amenities. To do this, he says, he would redirect fuel tax and registration.
He would have a central bank of facilities with car and caravan parking on either side and then outside of those heavy vehicles.
"Why can't we have showers that are accessed by heavy vehicle drivers using the chip in their licence?" he asked.
Other people who want to use them would pay a fee.
His vision sees local people employed to clean and stock the facilities regularly, and having them spaced every 100km.
"It will cut down fatigue accidents. It's not as though we have a lack of space in this country (for the rest areas)."
He also wants safer working conditions for truckies, a 38 hour week for truckies with no loss of pay.
At the moment membership into the party is free.
The next step after registering will be calling for nominations for representatives and setting up branches.
Mr Sweeney said representatives would contest elections in places with transport hubs or connections.
The party is not affiliated with any associations and is transport focused.
Find more at the Australian Road Transport Party Facebook Group.
Some of the ideas from the Australian Road Transport Party:
The ARTP wants to bring in the Bradford Scheme and capture flood waters to be redistributed throughout the country to fortify against drought.
Mr Sweeny said he didn't think enough people were coming into the country, and about 200,000 a year would help boost the economy.
He wanted these skilled immigrants given incentives to work in the bush. "It doesn't matter where they come from; we want them assimilated into the country."
He thinks drugs should be de-criminalised and treated like a medical condition.
The party would see unemployed and those on pensions running on a cashless system.
Rent, rego, insurance, phone, electricity would all be paid by the government, they would get some allowance added on to a card for food and fuel.
Old age pensioners would get more allowance as they've "worked hard all their life".
People on the dole would live in public housing and have most things looked after directly by the government to stop irresponsible spending and if they were studying to better themselves they would be rewarded with more on their cards.
Same went if they did volunteer work in the community. "The money comes from us already, and he elderly don't get enough as it is."
Mr Sweeny said all super should be looked after by the Reserve Bank of Australia and all government borrowings could only come from that pool of money to be paid back in five years with interest.
"Every man, woman and child would be allocated $10,000 per year in the fund until they start working," then that amount would increase as employers paid super. "You wouldn't lose any money to fees. When you retire you could choose to take your pension paid to you regularly until the day you die, or you could take a part lump sum and a pension."
The catch is what money is left over can't go to your family; instead it goes back into the system.
If you run out of money after retirement you can apply for a pension card like those on the dole.
He would cut GST to 8% but apply it to everything.
And he would focus on retaining utilities and other facilities under Aussie ownership.