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Tuesday, 17 February 1987
Page: 116

(Question No. 4897)

Mr Ronald Edwards asked the Minister for Communications, upon notice, on 14 November 1986:

(1) Are the standards adopted by the Australian Broadcasting Tribunal prescribed in regulations.

(2) Is the Tribunal obliged to apply legal procedures, precedents and consistencies when it receives complaints regarding the standards.

Mr Duffy —The following answer to the honourable member's question is based upon information provided by the Australian Broadcasting Tribunal:

(1) No. They are determined by the Tribunal under S.16 (1) (d) of the Broadcasting Act 1942.

(2) The procedures followed by the Tribunal in relation to the investigation of complaints concerning standards are set out in the Tribunal Practices Note PRN 06. Where the Tribunal considers the breach is sufficiently serious to justify consideration of the exercise of the Tribunal's substantive powers (eg to suspend a licence or reprimand a licensee), the Tribunal is required to follow inquiry procedures laid down in the Broadcasting Act and regulations. In all cases, the Tribunal aims to apply the standards consistently and in a reasonable manner to give effect to the purpose of the provisions.