Claims WIA in trouble with ASIC and ACMA without foundation
Some members have commented that the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) has issues with the WIA’s financial processes and is investigating the WIA. The WIA President has discussed the matter with ASIC and referred several queries to the WIA’s Auditor for clarification. The queries were in relation to building depreciation, treatment of subscriptions in advance, and the independence of the Auditor.
The Auditor subsequently contacted ASIC and has advised that its representations were fully accepted and no further correspondence is required on the matters raised. Suggestions have been made that the WIA incurred ASIC fines. To our knowledge, the WIA has never incurred an ASIC fine or late payment fee.
However, a company known as Amateur Radio Pty Ltd was registered in 1970 in order to protect the name "Amateur Radio" from possible use by other organisations. The directors of Amateur Radio Pty Ltd were past WIA directors and at least one past secretary, but the current WIA directors were not made aware of its existence. This company had not paid recent registration fees, but as the name was important to the WIA (being the name of our hobby and of our journal), the WIA Board made a decision to pay the late payment fee of several hundred dollars in order to prevent Amateur Radio Pty Ltd being deregistered.
The relationship between the ACMA and the WIA, through the relevant sub-committee, is extremely good. Regular discussions take place with ACMA staff on a number of topics related to WIA operations and functions. These include regulatory and licensing, repeaters and beacons, licence conditions, etc. Current discussions with the ACMA include the outcome of WRC-15, the WIA’s response to the draft update of the Radio Frequency Spectrum Plan, future changes to the Amateur Licence Conditions Determination (the LCD), changes to the procedure for the licensing of repeaters and beacons, and other operational issues that arise very regularly.
Under the Deed with the ACMA, the WIA is required to make regular callsign and assessment service reports. Owing to the lack of a Treasurer at critical times, and the need to embark on a mission of discovery following the resignation of a previous treasurer, a couple of these deadlines were missed.
The 2015 financial report to the ACMA was prepared by the President in early 2016. Strategies are now in place to improve the timing of ACMA reporting.
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