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Thursday, 14 September 2006
Page: 14

Mrs DE-ANNE KELLY (Parliamentary SecretaryTrade) (9:49 AM) —I move:

That this bill be now read a second time.

The Television Licence Fees Amendment Bill 2006 amends the Television Licence Fees Act 1964 as a consequence of provisions in the Broadcasting Legislation Amendment (Digital Television) Bill 2006.

This bill will make it clear that, once commercial television broadcasters are able to use their licences to provide an expanded range of digital services, they will be subject to fees based on their gross earnings across all services.

The expanded range of services will include a high definition multichannel from 2007, a standard definition multichannel from 2009, and any number of multichannels from digital switchover. This is provided for in the Broadcasting Legislation Amendment (Digital Television) Bill 2006.

Commercial television broadcasters are already liable, under the Datacasting Charges Imposition Act 1998, to pay charges related to their earnings for any licensed datacasting services they provide using transmitter licences authorised by their commercial television broadcasting licences.

This bill ensures that a consistent approach is taken to digital services provided by commercial television broadcasters on their spectrum.

Debate (on motion by Mr Bevis) adjourned.