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Audit of frequency assignment certificates

This business operating procedure outlines how we audit frequency assignment certificates (FACs). Accredited persons issues these to licence holders.

Background

We accredit people to perform certain activities related to the use of the radiofrequency spectrum. The aim of the accredited persons (AP) scheme is to maximise the amount of frequency coordination activity APs do.

We are still responsible for managing the radiofrequency spectrum. This is an obligation under the Radiocommunications Act and relevant legislative instruments and policies.

Our audit program enables us to:

Recordkeeping rules for frequency assignment certificates

Accredited persons must keep adequate records of certificates they issue. This is a requirement of the Radiocommunications (Frequency Assignment Certificates) Determination 2014.

If you are an accredited person who issues a certificate, you must keep records showing:

  • the criteria you used for interference management in issuing the certificate
  • the method you used to apply the criteria
  • a rationale for using the criteria and the method

You must keep these records for 5 years. During that time, you must make these records available to us if we ask for them.

Audit program for frequency assignment certificates

When we audit FACs, we base our approach on risk:

  • new or less experienced accredited persons pose a higher risk
  • experienced accredited persons with an established record of compliance are lower risk

We audit the certificates of less experienced APs more often. We reserve the right to audit all certificates, whatever the AP’s level of experience.

How we identify certificates for audit

We use 2 methods:

  • automatic trigger. We use the experience of each AP to set an individual audit ‘level’. This triggers an automatic audit for a percentage of their certificates.
  • targeted auditing. We target types of assignment or individual APS, sometimes in response to issues we identify during our regular audit program.

If we believe an AP has issued a certificate outside of the conditions required, we will contact you. You can resolve most issues quickly by giving us:

  • statements to clarify details in the certificate
  • more information to support the certificate

We may tell you in writing that we are not issuing an apparatus licence on the basis of the supplied certificate. This is usually because the information is not enough or we see major deficiencies. An example of a major deficiency is failing to follow the purpose of a band segment in a legislated band plan.

Withdrawal of accreditation

In some circumstances, we may consider withdrawing a person's accreditation. We follow Principle 11 of the Radiocommunications (Accreditation - Prescribed Certificates) - Principles 2014.

If we believe withdrawal of accreditation is an appropriate action, we will send you a formal notice. You will have the opportunity to show why we should not cancel your accreditation.

Review a decision to withdraw accreditation

If we cancel your accreditation, you can ask us to review our decision. This is your right under Part 5.6 of the Radiocommunications Act 1992.

The person who conducts the review is not involved in the original decision.

Complete form R051 Application for review of decision. You will need to:

  • state the reasons why we should not withdraw your accreditation
  • send the form to us within 28 days of receiving our original decision

Send the completed form to:

Executive Manager
Operations Branch
Australian Communications & Media Authority
PO Box 78
Belconnen ACT 2616

If you are still not satisfied with our decision, you can request another review by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal. This is allowed by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal Act 1975.

For further information on this procedure, email LAIS@acma.gov.au

The Business Operating Procedure Disclaimer applies to this process.

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