Record-keeping rules for payphone benchmarks
ACMA makes the Telecommunications (Payphones Performance Benchmarks) Record-Keeping Rules 2012
After consideration of submissions received in its recent public consultation process, the ACMA has made the Telecommunications (Payphones Performance Benchmarks) Record-Keeping Rules 2012. The Rules will commence on 1 February 2012.
The Rules and the accompanying explanatory statement can be found on the Federal Register of Legislative Instruments website.
The ACMA has exercised its powers under section 529 of the Telecommunications Act 1997 (the Tel Act) to make record-keeping rules.
The Rules relate to ministerially-determined performance benchmarks for payphones provided under the Universal Service Obligation (USO). Details of the government’s consumer safeguard reforms and the new payphone instruments including the Telecommunications Universal Service Obligation (Payphone Performance Benchmarks) Instrument (No. 1) 2011 are available from the Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy’s website.
The Rules apply to a Primary Universal Service Provider (PUSP) that has responsibility under the USO for the supply, installation, maintenance and rectification of faults for a payphone carriage service. The record-keeping rules require the PUSP to keep certain records and report to the ACMA.
Compliance with record-keeping rules is a requirement of section 530 of the Tel Act and making an incorrect record is an offence under section 531.
In the past, the ACMA has received the majority of data requested in the proposed rules through voluntarily arrangements and using its formal information gathering powers in the Tel Act. The Rules provide certainty for the PUSP allowing it to correctly record and report performance so that the ACMA has sufficient information to fulfil its monitoring, compliance and enforcement responsibilities.
This is the second instrument by the ACMA on record-keeping rules. On 26 September 2011, the ACMA made the Telecommunications (Customer Service Guarantee) Record-Keeping Rules 2011 that commenced on 1 October 2011.
The consultation paper (Word 447 kb or PDF 460 kb) outlines the content, implementation timeframe and data requirements of the proposed record-keeping rules. The ACMA consulted from 13 September 2011 to 25 October 2011.
The ACMA received the following submissions in response to the consultation paper:
Publication of submissions
In general, the ACMA publishes all submissions it receives.
The ACMA prefers to receive submissions that are not claimed to be confidential. However, the ACMA accepts that a submitter may sometimes wish to provide information in confidence. In these circumstances, submitters are asked to identify the material over which confidentiality is claimed and provide a written explanation for the claim.
The ACMA will consider each confidentiality claim on a case-by-case basis. If the ACMA accepts a claim, it will not publish the confidential information unless authorised or required by law to do so.
Release of submissions where authorised or required by law
Any submissions provided to the ACMA may be released under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (unless an exemption applies) or shared with other Commonwealth Government agencies under Part 7A of the Australian Communications and Media Authority Act 2005. The ACMA may also be required to release submissions for other reasons including for the purpose of parliamentary processes or where otherwise required by law (for example, under a court subpoena). While the ACMA seeks to consult submitters of confidential information before that information is provided to another party, the ACMA cannot guarantee that confidential information will not be released through these or other legal means.