The Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal was requested to conduct a review of pricing for shared mobile radio services on the Government Radio Network with a view to introducing new tariffs from 1 July 2011.
Following completion of the review, IPART forwarded its report outlining a pricing methodology and recommended pricing to the Premier, Minster for Finance and Services, and the Director-General of the Department of Finance and Services in late 2011.
Following consideration of IPART’s final recommendations and report in December 2011, the NSW Government affirmed the full cost recovery pricing principle and determined that interim pricing would continue until 31 December 2011, with a new pricing framework commencing from 1 January 2012.
Based on IPART’s recommendations, this framework applies full cost recovery principles for providing services to Network users, and is designed to be equitable and simple to implement. The pricing structure acknowledges the requirements of current core network users (Fire and Rescue NSW, the NSW Rural Fire Service, the NSW State Emergency Service, and the Ambulance Service of NSW) which drive the design, coverage and capacity of the network, and aligns these requirements with the cost-base for providing the Network.
As part of this framework, core users pay a flat fee which reflects their impact on the costs incurred to meet their requirements. As this fee is not related to the number of handsets on the Network, core agencies are able to program all of their handsets to access the Network, ensuring they are ready to be deployed instantly, even if they are normally in areas not covered by the Network.
For all other (non-core) users, a commercially comparable cost per terminal is to be applied for all handsets registered on the network. IPART examined the commercial offerings currently available and the feature set provided by the Government Radio Network and recommended a per terminal cost. The per terminal cost for 2012-13 is $51.50.