Moratorium: Water Truck Licences

January 30, 2012

The Ministry of Transport will be placing a moratorium on issuing new water truck permits, Minister of Transport Derrick Burgess said this morning [Jan.30].

“The Ministry of Transport continues to apply innovative ways to absorb the adversarial arrows of this financial downturn which are aimed toward small business owners,” said Minister Burgess.

“My focus today is on the water trucking industry which is known for its dedicated operators who are no strangers to hard work, long hours and attentive responses to the needs of their clients. Water truck operators provide a wide variety of services from delivering water to maintaining water tanks and so much more.

“Over the years the provision of water in Bermuda has evolved to include underground piped in services which will soon span the island, reaching key areas in the market.

“Technology has also visited this industry with some of the newer larger trucks carrying up to two and a half times the load of the traditional truck. The impact of advancement should not impede progress for those already in the industry.

“Currently, the cost of a water truck permit is $65,000 and the annual licencing fee averages about $1,000, depending on the class of the vehicle. With forty-five (45) registered water trucks in Bermuda and the emerging piped in water service, some water truck owners will face a decline in market share.

“The Ministry of Transport will be placing a moratorium on issuing new water truck permits in an effort to bring some stability to the market and minimize the impact of fluctuations in individual market share.

“Careful monitoring of this sector will be implemented over the course of the next three years in order to examine the effectiveness of the moratorium on individual water truck business owners.

“It is the goal of the Ministry to remain both flexible and responsive to the concerns and needs of the people of Bermuda who are committed to providing much needed services to the community. It is our expectation that this move will give existing owners the boost they need to remain fruitful in an ever changing economy,” concluded the Minister.

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Comments (20)

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  1. Rockfish #2 says:

    This announcement is nothing but a feeble attempt to divert attention away from the BLDC debacle!

  2. Paul says:

    “The Ministry of Transport continues to apply innovative ways to absorb the adversarial arrows of this financial downturn which are aimed toward small business owners,”

    I’d dearly love the Minister to explain how refusing to hand out licences is ‘innovative’.

  3. Hudson says:

    When will this government learn that we ALL will lose out through their insistance of using such protectionist policies? In a free market, prices will fluctuate according to demand and market conditions. Yes, some Companies in the market will fall away, unable to be competitive or stay in business. However, prices will be competitive to consumers. It’s amazing what people will do to secure a vote!

    • Bad News Bear says:

      Totally agree, Hudson. The ‘adversarial arrows’ are pointing directly at the PLP Government. How can a small business owner be competitive when they have to pay $65K for a license to begin with? Hopefully, the current government will be voted out within the next three years and spare the taxpayer the burden of having to monitor this ridiculous moratorium.

  4. Kim Smith says:

    Perhaps the Minister is planning to go into the water trucking business… and so needs time to line himself up to get a license when he reopens the process.

  5. Lost says:

    “absorb the adversarial arrows” – what lovely alliteration.

    Progressively pandering to the public?

  6. Get Real says:

    its called doing nothing to be seen to be doing something ,

  7. Cedar Beams (Original) says:

    I’m glad that they are stopping the issue of further water truck licences. Water Truckers are having tough times too. One or two that I know are having to pump out cesspits on the weekend.

    • Bad News Bear says:

      Hope they aren’t using the same trucks! :)

    • 32n64w says:

      With the same pump they supply water with? Yikes.

    • JB says:

      Not into the same water truck I hope! All jokes aside that just made their license more valuable. With a limited pool of licenses they can change their livelihood and pocket $100k from the sale of their truck and license.

    • Hmmmm says:

      I’ve never heard of an expat water truck driver. How many of these are there?

  8. Poppa Bermy says:

    Thanks for all the comments Bob, Craig, Michael, Patricia, Jeane & Louise… Sorry I meant Rockfish, Hudson, Kim, Lost & Get Real…. Im getting dizzy from all this spin…

  9. Gvt Mechanic says:

    Oh come on @Poppa! You think this is going to solve ANY economic problems. This is blatant PLP spin IMHO – “Look at what a good guy I am looking after these water vendors” Put out there to deflect from the fiasco over BLDC, nothing else.

  10. Clinton J.A. Paynter OBA Affiliated says:

    This is a total waste of time.. NO ONE IS APPLYING FOR NEW PERMITS! Business is down… people are actually trying to sell the trucks and permits they have… and guess what? NO ONE IS BUYING! Just like the crack down on tractor trailer dumpsters… 3 YEARS TOO LATE!

  11. Hmmmm says:

    How many new applications were made in 2011?

  12. Huh? says:

    Did somebody say something about more competition brings better pricing!? Don’t yall know that everyone charges the same price for water!? By the time that underground pipeline becomes islandwide there will be no need for any water trucks and that licence isn’t something that the PLP introduced, its been required for decades. In my view, considering the fact that this pipeline will put at least 100 ppl out of work, the govt. should have required them to buy out each water truck service or a reasonable price because i’m certain that once the lines are all in place there will only be a need to hire a skeleton crew in order to maintain the lines. Hence, another industry where the wealth has been monopolized and filtered into the hands of a few.

  13. Truth (Original) says:

    Some things I am uncertain about.

    Is the piped water spanning from Southshore to Somerset all Watlington Water Works?

    Is Govt earning revenues from allowing the company to expand and increase its market share all the way to somerset?

    This expansion is what is diluting the business for the truckers. Govt allows these guys to spread their business which takes business away from the truckers and then tries to stem the fleecing the truckers are going to get by placing a moratorium on new licenses.

    It seems to me that Govt may have taken the profits that the truckers used to earn from trucking to the west end and split them with whatever company now has the pipes under our roads.

    There’s a thought.