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Wednesday, 15 May 1968

Dr Everingham asked the PostmasterGeneral, upon notice: -

1.   Will he consider providing part-time radio and television licences' for itinerant workers who spend . most of their time out of reach of either standard voltage power supplies or telecasts?

2.   Can he. state if in Holland any post office can validate a licence for a month by affixing a stamp?

Mr Hulme - The answers to the honourable member's questions are as follows: l: The question of issuing radio and television receiving licences for less than 12 months, which is the period at present specified in the Broadcasting and Television Act, has been considered on a number of occasions. However, because of the large number of transactions and recording operations which would be involved in relation to the total number of over three million licences in force, the conclusion has been reached that' any alteration of existing conditions of payment of fees could not be justified except in the case of hired receivers. In the case of the latter, the firm which hires out receivers pays fees on a pro rata basis calculated on monthly returns furnished to the Department indicating the number of receivers on hire.

Itinerant workers who have in their possession receivers capable of operation only from standard voltage power supplies and who reside in areas where such supply is unavailable would be eligible for refund of fees paid for radio, television, or combined receiving licences in respect of another address if the receiver or receivers were stored for the period in question :ind provided the licence still had more than three months to run. Merely residing outside the normal service areas of radio broadcasting or television stations, however, does not in itself constitute a valid reason for not holding an appropriate receiving licence if a receiver is installed and capable .of being used.

2.   It is not known whether post offices in Holland can validate a licence for a month by affixing a stamp but, for the reasons given in answer :o part. (I) of the question, adoption of such an arrangement in this country is not favoured.

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