Sunday was a wet miserable day so a pretty good day to be attending the FoMC AGM. It was held at the North Shore Vintage Car Club rooms and when I arrived, I could see they had the workshops all open so before I went inside, I spend 20 minutes being shown around the cars that the Club or its members are working on. It’s really interesting to see the wooden bones of those old girls being carefully restored or replicated.
I then headed inside, meeting up with Daryl at the door. The agenda started with morning tea before we all took seats for the actual meeting part. I won’t bore you with the finer bits of minutes & report passing at all.
What I do want to talk about is the importance of the FoMC and what they do for us all. We turn up monthly to our club events and enjoy ourselves and our cars. The FoMC ensure that we can. They are lobbying government on matters that affect car clubs. They sit on working committees finding work arounds for issues that impact car clubs. For example, the ongoing ability to import an older car into New Zealand is because the FoMC worked to get SIV (Special Interest Vehicle) exemptions integrated into law.
They are currently working with the Ministry of Transport on a way to get 12 month WOF’s for Classic Cars. This involves finding a clear way to distinguish between a 40 year old clanger and a 40 year old treasured classic. The working committee have come up with a draft option which is currently moving up the chain. The chain includes lawyers looking for any negative outcomes – the ‘what if’s’. If the draft doesn’t pass muster then the FoMC will be involved in finding a new solution or modification.
They have had input in the changes to the Incorporated Society’s act. Specifically, they got the definition of a ‘small society’ increased from $10k assets/expenses to $50k. Big sigh of relief there. $10k would have meant we would be paying for full audits of our accounts every year. We will need to revisit our constitutions and make some changes to comply with this new act which comes into effect in 2024. For one, members of our committee need to be come officers of the club rather than committee members.
They are also working on the introduction of biofuels. Apparently, any car older than 2010 could have issues running with a biofuel content greater than 8%. Airplanes, boats, and some cars couldn’t run on even that smaller amount. Chainsaw and other petrol tools also could have issues. The country has been here before when they introduced unleaded fuel which caused some serious issues, so the government are front footing any perceived problems. This means working with organisations including the FoMC to insure there always will be availability of fuel for all types of engines but still reach the targets set for our climate change response. The call went out today for any member of any club who has some experience in this field to join them in a working committee or just as a consultant.
The FoMC had 116 member clubs representing 89,409 individuals and 131,850 vehicles as of March this year and it has grown since then.
To give the FoMC more clout, they are starting a NZ Historic Vehicle Survey. This will collate, not just numbers of cars and owners, but also those who work in the field i.e. restorers.
A similar survey taken in 2020 in the UK showed:
- The number of historic vehicles on the DVLA database was 1.5 million
- The historic movement now is worth over £7.2 billion to the UK economy
- There are 4,000 businesses employing over 34,000 people
New Zealand is thought to have similar numbers, we just need to know for sure. Having this sort of data will make the “powers that be” take more notice of what FoMC have to say.
The actual AGM part of the day was interspaced with two guest speakers.
The morning speaker was Michael Wood, Minister of Transport. He clearly knew and respected those he had been dealing with on the working committees and was very knowledgeable on all aspects of his portfolio. After his talk he responded to questions for half an hour and continued to talk to people during lunch.
The afternoon speaker was Garry Jackson, current president of Canterbury Mustang Owners club, former Mayor of Hurunui and former Ford man in NZ, South Africa, China & South Asia. He talked about the motor industry over the years from his personal perspective. He explained the start of the Jap imports, which started when a guy who worked for him realised if 5 people flew to Japan, bought a car each and then flew home, the cars could be brought back to NZ and onsold. So, the bells tolled for the NZ car assembly industry.
All in all, I found it a very interesting day and I’m very glad to have the FoMC fighting in our corner. Here is a link to their website and some of the submissions they have made – https://fomc.nz/current-affairs/