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2008 News Releases




On air behaviour - the WIA meets with ACMA

Date : 28 / 06 / 2008
Author : Peter Young - VK3MV

Michael Owen VK3KI, WIA President and Peter Young VK3MV, WIA Directors met with Allan Major, ACMA Executive Manager Regulation and Compliance Branch, Dominic Byrne, ACMA Manager Compliance & Investigations Section and, by phone hookup, Gary Ryan, ACMA Acting Manager, Interference Management Section, Brisbane, on 18 June 2008.

The meeting, originally suggested by Allan Major at the RadCom08 meetings, discussed compliance issues that concerned many amateurs in Australia. The ACMA representatives said that there had been an increased level of complaints about on air behaviour, some of which appeared to be breaches of the Amateur LCD and the Radiocommunications Act.

The range of regulatory tools available to ACMA, from criminal prosecution to administrative action, including warnings leading to the suspension of licences, perhaps even leading to the cancellation of licences, were discussed.

The WIA representatives pointed out that, to a very large extent, the amateur service was self-regulating, from the voluntary acceptance of band plans to the guidance of new amateurs. However, certain on air behaviour is unacceptable to the majority of amateurs, particularly as amateur radio sought to attract younger people. It was stressed that the WIA was not a law enforcement agency and that ACMA was the national regulator. The WIA Board believed that ACMA should not only act, but be seen to act, either criminally or administratively, against particular amateurs in such circumstances.

The WIA is grateful that ACMA intends to place more information on regulatory and compliance matters on the ACMA website.


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