It's all in the timing
OPERATING a company across two state borders can be a tricky business.
Just ask managing director of Brown and Hurley, Jim Hurley, who is regularly frustrated by differences between states in time zones, rules, regulations and charges.
His Kyogle-based truck dealership has offices in Townsville, Rockhampton, Toowoomba, Brisbane, and Coffs Harbour.
"We start an hour before they start in Brisbane, then there's a two-hour period over lunch where their people are at lunch, then our people are at lunch, then you lose another hour at the end of the day.
"So really you're losing four hours of contact with your customers and suppliers over that time.
"For our drivers, they've got stringent hours they have to abide by in their log books, but they get out of Brisbane and they've lost an hour and they still have to get to Sydney on time."
There are also other cross-border anomalies that disadvantage his business, such as different rates of payroll tax and worker's compensation premiums.
It's problems like these that Mr Hurley hopes NSW's first cross-border commissioner, Steve Toms can help resolve.
The new position was announced by NSW Minister for Regional Infrastructure and Services Andrew Stoner yesterday.
Mr Stoner said the commissioner would give a voice to cross-border communities, review cross-border governance and management arrangements and develop strategies to improve services.
The Northern Rivers Business Chamber welcomed the appointment, saying it was a big win for NSW businesses.
"Business communities located on the NSW side of the Queensland border have found themselves at a competitive disadvantage to their competitors across the borders that frequently have the advantage of lower taxes, less red tape and more business friendly government policies," said regional manager John Murray.
Mr Murray said he would be encouraging the government to ensure the commissioner reports to parliament every six months on progress in improving cross-border competitiveness.
For our drivers, they've
got stringent hours they
have to abide by in their log books, but they get out of Brisbane and they've lost an hour and they still have to get to Sydney on time.
- Jim Hurley ( pictured right), managing director of the Brown Hurley Group.