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H,GHER HARBQUR DUES WELLINGTON APPLICATION P.A. WELLINGTON, Friday. The Wellington Harbour Board is applying to the Price Tribunal for permission to Increase its dues and charges by 37 per cent on the 1937 levels, for unless some relief in this respect is granted it is faced with an annual estimated loss Of nearly £170,000. Mr. J. F. B. Stevenson, appearing before the tribunal on behalf of the board, said it might seem strange that the board, from being prosperous and well run and able to pay its way over a long period, should in 18 months be facing this large annual loss. The board was in a position different from any other major board in New Zealand because it acted as wharfinger, which entailed the board in the employment Of large numbers of waterside workers for handling cargo from the time it left the ships' slings until it was picked up 3n the shed by consignees. Other employees were also incidental to this function —tractor drivers and the like. , . ■ - .. The system was working to the satisfaction of shipping companies and merchants, and the port gave a service second to none. Auckland did none of this work as a.board. It provided the sheds, for Which it got its rent, but the shipping companies had to handle the work. The Napier Harbour Board had certainly been doing seme ©f this work, but its general cargo rate was 8/ a ton, compared With Wellington's 4/. Mr. Stevenson said that in Wellington ships from the United King' dotn w£re tullOaded for dues which were less than the Wages paid out alone. That did not apply to the New Zealand coastal trade, which, however, was 4 not '-paying its way With dues and charges on the 1937 level, two cost of living bonuses, increases in hourly rates for employees, a bonus distribution to waterside workers on the same basis as that paid to those working under commission contracts, and new holiday pay arrangements, the Wages of the board could not be met at the present rates. , . To Mr.-Justice, Hunter, chairman of the tribunal, Mr. Stevenson said it was at the request of the Minister 6f Labour that the board agreed to say the same bonus as did the commission. It was necessary for harmony on the wharf. The Minister ,had said it .was a charge .that the rommunity^WoiljdJ\av e to bear.

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Bibliographic details

RELIEF SOUGHT, Auckland Star, Volume LXXVI, Issue 165, 14 July 1945

Word Count

RELIEF SOUGHT Auckland Star, Volume LXXVI, Issue 165, 14 July 1945

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