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Thursday, 30 November 2006
Page: 23


Senator IAN CAMPBELL (Minister for the Environment and Heritage) (10:26 AM) —I move:

That these bills be now read a second time.

I seek leave to have the second reading speeches incorporated in Hansard.

Leave granted.

The speeches read as follows—

DATACASTING TRANSMITTER LICENCE FEES BILL 2006

The Datacasting Transmitter Licence Fees Bill 2006 is part of the implementation of the Government’s media reform policies in relation to the allocation of datacasting transmitter licences covering the two unallocated television channels.

As part of the media reform legislation, provision will be made for the allocation of one set of licences (Channel A datacasting transmitter licences) for fixed, in-home, free-to-air digital services, and the other (Channel B datacasting transmitter licences) for a potentially wider range of digital services.

The Datacasting Transmitter Licence Fee Bill 2006 will implement the Government’s policy objective to require the licence-holder of the licences reserved for fixed, in-home, free-to-air services (the Channel A licences) to be subject to a revenue-based annual licence fee in addition to the up-front payment resulting from a price-based allocation system. The annual fee will be determined according to formulae based on the formulae used to calculate commercial television broadcasting licence fees.


BROADCASTING SERVICES AMENDMENT (COLLECTION OF DATACASTING TRANSMITTER LICENCE FEES) BILL 2006

The Broadcasting Services Amendment (Collection of Datacasting Transmitter Licence Fees) Bill 2006 amends the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 to provide payment machinery and record keeping obligations to support the administration of the Datacasting Transmitter Licence Fees Bill 2006.

The Datacasting Transmitter Licence Fee Bill 2006 which is also being introduced today will provide for the imposition of annual licence fees on Channel A datacasting transmitter licence holders.

This bill (the Broadcasting Services Amendment (Collection of Datacasting Transmitter Licence Fees ) Bill 2006) will amend the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 to ensure compliance by the Channel A licence holder with licence fee payment obligations and appropriate record keeping in relation to these licence fees. These obligations will be similar to those currently imposed on commercial television broadcasting licences under Part 14A of the Act.

Debate (on motion by Senator Ian Campbell) adjourned.

Ordered that the resumption of the debate be an order of the day for a later hour.