Bills Digest 93 1996-97 Telecommunications (Carrier Licence Charges) Bill 1996


Numerical Index | Alphabetical Index

WARNING:
This Digest was prepared for debate. It reflects the legislation as introduced and does not canvass subsequent amendments. This Digest does not have any official legal status. Other sources should be consulted to determine the subsequent official status of the Bill.

CONTENTS

Passage History

Telecommunications (Carrier Licence Charges) Bill 1996

Date Introduced: 5 December 1996
House: House of Representatives
Portfolio: Communications and the Arts
Commencement: Royal Assent, but if the Act receives the Royal Assent later than 5 June 1997, it is taken to commence on that earlier date.Note, however, that the annual charge imposed by Clause 12 (below) is imposed only in respect of financial years beginning on or after 1 July 1998.

Purpose

This Bill is a part of a package of Bills, the purpose of which is to implement a new regulatory framework for the telecommunications industry.The purpose of the Bill is to impose a fee on applications for carrier licences and an annual charge on carrier licences

Background

Refer to the Background contained in the Digest of the Telecommunications Bill 1996.

Main Provisions

The bill contains 4 Parts.

Part 1

This Part contains the commencement and interpretation provisions.

Part 2

Clauses 7 imposes a charge when an application is made for a carrier licence (under Clause 52 of the Telecommunications Bill 1996).The charge is payable by the applicant (Clause 8).

The amount of the charge is calculated in accordance with a determination to be made by the Australian Communications Authority (ACA) (Clause 9).The maximum charge is $100,000 (Clause 10).

Clause 44 of the Telecommunications (Transitional Provisions and Consequential Amendments) Bill 1996 deems the issue of a carrier licence under the Telecommunications Bill 1996 to existing telecommunications carriers.

Part

Clause 12 imposes an annual charge on carrier licences that are in force at the beginning of a financial year.The charge is imposed in respect of financial years beginning on or after 1 July 1998.The charge is payable by the licence holder (Clause 13).

Again, the amount of the charge is calculated in accordance with a determination to be made by the ACA (Clause 14).

There is no limit on the amount of the annual licence charge except that Clause 15 provides that the total of charges imposed on licences must not exceed the sum of the amounts which represent the proportion of the:

  • ACA's costs, for the preceding financial year, that are attributable to its telecommunications functions and powers

  • Australian Competition and Consumer Commission's (ACCC) costs, for the preceding financial year, that are attributable to its telecommunications functions and powers, and

  • Commonwealth's contribution to the budget of the International Telecommunications Union (see the digest for Telecommunications (Carrier Licence Fees) Amendment Bill 1996 for a brief explanation of the role of the ITU) for the calendar year in which the beginning of the financial year occurs that is to be recovered from carriers.

Part 4

The ACA does not come into existence until 1 July 1997.The Telecommunications Bill 1996, when enacted, will allow for applications to be made for carrier licences from 5 June 1997.Clause 45 of the Telecommunications (Transitional Provisions and Consequential Amendments) Bill 1996 substitutes AUSTEL for the ACA for the period from 5 June 1997 to 30 June 1997 for the purpose of receiving carrier licence applications.Part 4 is a transitional provision which substitutes AUSTEL for the ACA for the period from 5 June 1997 to 30 June 1997 (inclusive) for the purposes of Part 2, i.e. to make a written determination setting out how the amount of the application charge is to be ascertained.

Contact Officer and Copyright Details

Lee Jones
5 February 1997
Bills Digest Service
Information and Research Services

This Digest does not have any official legal status. Other sources should be consulted to determine whether the Bill has been enacted and, if so, whether the subsequent Act reflects further amendments.

IRS staff are available to discuss the paper's contents with Senators and Members and their staff but not with members of the public.

ISSN 1323-9031
Commonwealth of Australia 1996

Except to the extent of the uses permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, no part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, including information storage and retrieval systems, without the prior written consent of the Parliamentary Library, other than by Members of the Australian Parliament in the course of their official duties.

Published by the Department of the Parliamentary Library, 1997.

This page was prepared by the Parliamentary Library, Commonwealth of Australia
Last updated: 26 March 1997



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