Win for adventure firms

An estimated 200 Tourism Industry Association (TIA) member businesses around the country can expect to see a marked reduction in their 2013-14 ACC levies, from $3.48 to $0.84 per $100 of payroll, following a review of their risk levels requested by the association.

The businesses are classified by ACC as ''amusement and other recreation activities''.

Alpine and whitewater recreation operators, who are also in this category at present, are also in line for a levy reduction, from $3.48 to $2.56 per $100 of payroll. ACC will classify those operators under a new, separate category from April 1.

The reductions come after the association worked with ACC to review how levies were set for operators in the adventure tourism and outdoor activity sector.

The actual risks involved were analysed and several hundred historical claims made by businesses covered by the ''amusement and other recreation activities'' classification examined.

Association chief executive Martin Snedden said in a statement the adjustments would make ''a huge difference to the profitability of many of our member businesses.

''It also fairly reflects the nature and level of risk of these businesses.''

Shotover Canyon Swing general manager Matt Hollyer, of Queenstown, said the levy cuts would save his business more than $10,000 a year in ACC levies.

''We really appreciate the efforts TIA made for us on this matter,'' he said.

''This is a massive reduction in costs and shows the benefits of having a strong member organisation to tackle these issues on our behalf.''

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