Response 273930717

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Privacy Collection Statement

Do you agree to the Privacy Collection Statement?

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Ticked Yes, I agree
Yes, I agree and would like to make a confidential submission
No, I do not agree

Your details

Name and contact details

Name
Allison Hewitt

I am submitting on behalf of

Submission for
Please select one item
Myself
Business
Consumer association
Ticked Government department/agency
Industry association

Industry information - Government department/agency

Your industry

ANZSIC: div_name
Please select one item
Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing
Mining
Manufacturing
Electricity, Gas, Water and Waste Services
Construction
Wholesale Trade
Retail Trade
Accommodation and Food Services
Transport, Postal and Warehousing
Information Media and Telecommunications
Financial and Insurance Services
Rental, Hiring and Real Estate Services
Ticked Professional, Scientific and Technical Services
Administrative and Support Services
Public Administration and Safety
Education and Training
Health Care and Social Assistance
Arts and Recreation Services
Other Services

Number of Employees

Number of Employees
Please select one item
0-4
5-19
Ticked 20-199
200+

Jurisdiction

Jurisdiction
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Commonwealth
Ticked State/Territory
Local government

Do you use measurements for health, environment or justice purposes?

Measurements for health environment justice purposes
Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No

How many legal measuring instruments are used by your department/agency?

How many legal measuring instruments
Please select one item
1-10
Ticked 11-50
51-100
100+

Submission process

How would you like to submit your response

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Ticked Through the online survey
Emailing a confidential response

Policy objectives for legal metrology in Australia

Are the following policy objectives appropriate for legal metrology in Australia?

Supporting confidence in the measurement system
Please select one item
Ticked Yes No Unsure
Facilitating a level playing field for business
Please select one item
Ticked Yes No Unsure
Consumer (or the broader term customer) protection
Please select one item
Ticked Yes No Unsure
Supporting industry development and technology innovation
Please select one item
Ticked Yes No Unsure

What is the relative importance of the following policy objectives for legal metrology in Australia?

Supporting confidence in the measurement system
Please select one item
Not important Somewhat important Ticked Highly important Unsure
Facilitating a level playing field for business
Please select one item
Not important Ticked Somewhat important Highly important Unsure
Consumer (or the broader term customer) protection
Please select one item
Not important Ticked Somewhat important Highly important Unsure
Supporting industry development and technology innovation
Please select one item
Not important Ticked Somewhat important Highly important Unsure

Further comments

Further comments policy objectives
Confidence in the measurement system is of prime importance as the other factors are derived from this. Providing a sound evidential basis for the justice system is essential and will assist in resolving disputes that arise. Level playing field for business and consumer protection could be considered under one umbrella of 'ensuring fairness within business'. Supporting industry development would sit below the other 2 in importance.

International cooperation and harmonisation

What should be the criteria for Australia's participation in the development of international documentary standards relevant to legal metrology?

Your response on criteria for Australia's participation in international standards
Australia needs to participate in the development of standards that relate to key science, technology and business activities. If we are to comply with international standards, which may also underpin MRAs, we need to have representation in their formulation to ensure our needs and concerns are recognized and addressed.

What should be NMI’s approach to determining Australia’s pattern approval requirements where documentary standards from organisations such as the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) more fully account for recent developments in technology and operation of measuring instruments than equivalent OIML standards?

NMI's approach to pattern approval requirements
We should use the most current and/or relevant standards available, if provided by a reputable and recognized source.

To what extent should NMI consider flexibility to allow for particular circumstances in Australia when adopting international standards for pattern approval?

Further comments
While the intent of this may be reasonable and pragmatic, care is needed to ensure that such flexibility does not undermine quality standards and/or compromise MRAs. It would benefit from an agreed standardised framework to direct consideration and control outcomes and therefore mitigate risk and lessen the perception of self-interest.

Principles-based approach to regulation

What are the key principles that should drive Australia’s regulatory approach to legal metrology?

Key principles
The outcome (principle or objective) is of more importance that the process. A principles based approach has more alignment with accreditation providers such as NATA. NATA documentation identifies what has to be managed to meet compliance requirements with Australian/international standards but recognizes that different organisations may be able to meet these outcomes in different ways.

What concerns, if any, could there be for a business when managing compliance in a principles-based regulatory environment?

Business concerns managing compliance in principles-based envirnment
Initial effort/discomfort at having to work out an appropriate process that works for their business rather than just following a prescriptive guidance document. Perhaps uncertainty around whether they have done enough to meet the regulatory requirement?

What level of guidance material, if any, should be available to ensure stakeholders have sufficient understanding of the policy objectives and outcomes being sought?

Level of guidance material
Using NATA as an example, available documentation includes: Standard/s to be complied with; Application documents which describe how this standard is to be applied within a specific fields (certain criteria may not be relevant in some industries but others may be critical); Technical Notes and Policy Circulars - provide specific information and/or guidance for certain activities within the documented requirements. From a user perspective, the documents should be concise and simply and clearly articulate the expected outcome.

What should be the legislative status of such guidance material?

Source of guidance material
If the process is not prescribed and such material is for guidance only, it surely couldn't have any legislative status. Where such status is required a greater level of direction and prescription may be required.

Risk-based approach to compliance monitoring

What are the appropriate factors to inform risk management related to setting priorities for regulation of legal metrology, including compliance and enforcement activity?

Factors to inform risk management
Outcome needs to align with the primary policy objective of 'confidence in the measurement system' from which the other objectives derive. Consequently risk management must include oversight to review risk assessments to ensure standards and quality are maintained and mitigate any perception of abuse or self interest. Responsibility needs to be assigned and an agreed framework established to direct and control the process in a transparent and accountable way.

Regulatory approaches for legal metrology - Fit for purpose

How important is it that NMI considers the broader context of 'fit-for-purpose' when developing requirements/policies in relation to measurement?

Please select one item
Not important
Somewhat important
Ticked Highly important
Unsure
Further comments
If it's not 'fit for purpose', what is the point? The understanding of what is 'fit for purpose' is the more significant issue.

How should NMI focus its regulatory activity in relation to conformity to type assessment?

Focus of regulatory activity in relation to conformity
Need to ensure documented expectations are being delivered using inspection/audit tools. Unsure how this is currently achieved across all sectors.

Regulatory approaches for legal metrology - Compliance and enforcement

How should NMI focus its compliance activities to ensure businesses are meeting their obligations under trade measurement law?

Comments-NMI focus of compliance activities
Consider risk approach depending on resources available. Target areas where non-compliance has more significant outcome, aligned with prioritization of initial policy objectives i.e. confidence in measurement system > fairness in trade > developing business opportunities.

What are the appropriate circumstances for NMI to consider referral for prosecution as a regulatory response?

Appropriate circumstances for prosecution
when it breaks the law