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Friday, 19 October 1984
Page: 2089

Senator PETER BAUME(4.09) —by leave-I move:

(1) Page 4, paragraph 5 (a), proposed sub-paragraph 83 (6) (e) (ii), lines 1-12 , leave out the sub-paragraph, insert the following sub-paragraph:

'(ii) that, having considered the need for an adequate and comprehensive service provided pursuant to the licence for such an additional station, it is in the public interest that applications for such a licence should be invited; or'.

(2) Page 4, paragraph 5 (b), lines 13-18, leave out the paragraph.

These amendments are to clause 5 of the Bill, which seek to amend section 83 of the principal Act. As Senator Button has said, it relates to circumstances in which an additional full commercial broadcasting station or commercial television station licence might be issued under certain circumstances which are set out in that section of the Act.

The Bill before us contains certain criteria to be taken into account which were the subject of comment by several honourable senators during debate at the second reading stage of the Bill. The amendments which I have moved retain certain conditions that have to be considered but strike out certain other conditions which relate to the print media and in their place substitute the words 'there shall be considered matters in the public interest'. Although that broadens the consideration, we feel that it is appropriate that the public interest generally should be considered. We consider it inappropriate that there should on this occasion be a consideration of print media holdings, for reasons which I set out in my speech during the second reading stage of this Bill. I may or may not wish to respond again, but that very briefly puts the case for the amendments which I have moved. I commend the amendments to the Committee.