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Tuesday, 6 June 1989
Page: 3475


Senator ALSTON(9.19) —I move:

(49) Page 48, after subclause 130 (3), add the following new subclause:

``(4) AUSTEL shall publish guidelines which shall describe the knowledge, qualifications and experience required by an applicant for a cabling licence under subsection (1).''.

Clause 130 involves applications for cabling licences. It is yet another example of unnecessary regulation. There is no reason at all why there should be a need for cabling licences any more than there ought to be a need for permits to be granted to suppliers and manufacturers of customer premise equipment. Cabling licences are simply a means of keeping a finger on every person who operates in the industry. There is no reason to presume the worst about persons who are providing cabling equipment or, indeed, carrying out cabling operations. We see this as yet another example of a bureaucratic solution to a problem which could just as easily be solved by Austel monitoring the industry and taking action where necessary against potential offenders.

Amendment No. 49 would add the following sub-subclause:

Austel shall publish guidelines which shall describe the knowledge, qualifications and experience required by an applicant for a cabling licence under subsection (1).

So if it is necessary for a licence to be issued at all, at least persons should know in advance what the qualifications and criteria might be. If this is done, one would hope that there would be a minimum of bureaucratic intervention and a minimum of paperwork. But I, for one, do not have any confidence that that will be the case. Therefore we think that, at the very least, it makes sense that there should be a public indication of the minimum requirements for applicants for licences.