Stage 2: Consultation on a proposed Rule
2.1 Commencement of public consultation on a proposed Rule (section 251 of the NERL)
If the AEMC considers that it should take action under the rule amendment procedure, it will publish:
notice of the request for the making of a Rule; and
a draft of the proposed Rule.
The notice will include:
an invitation for any person to make written submissions to the AEMC on the proposed Rule; and
the closing date for any submissions to the AEMC (which must be a date that is not less than four weeks from the date the notice is published).
Other matters may be included in a notice such as:
notice of the AEMC's intention to expedite the rule amendment procedure (under section 252 of the NERL), if the AEMC considers the proposed Rule is a non-controversial Rule or urgent Rule; or
notice of the AEMC's intention to "fast track" the rule amendment procedure, if the AEMC considers the proposed Rule meets the conditions set out in section 253 of the NERL. The intention of a "fast track" process is to remove the requirement on the AEMC to seek consultation on the proposed Rule at Stage 1 of the rule amendment procedure if the proponent can demonstrate that it has already consulted on the proposed Rule.
2.2 Early consultation with related regulatory bodies
In addition to the public consultation process set out above, the AEMC may consult at an early stage in the rule amendment procedure with the Australian Energy Regulator, jurisdictional regulators as defined in the Regulations and Energy Ombudsmen on particular issues set out in the proposed Rule relating to those bodies' functions. These arrangements are set out in the Memorandum of Understanding between the AEMC and some of those bodies.
2.3 What does "publish" mean in relation to a request for a Rule? (section 87 of the NERL)
The NERL specifies different requirements on the AEMC for publishing certain documents during the rule amendment procedure.
all relevant information (including amending Rules and the National Energy Retail Rules) is published on the AEMC's website, and copies of these documents are made available at the AEMC's offices;
notices are published in the South Australian Gazette and in a newspaper circulating generally throughout Australia; and
all written submissions received by the AEMC are published on the AEMC's website unless the person who gave the submission, claims, in writing, when giving it to the AEMC, that it contains confidential information, and the AEMC decides that the submission contains confidential information. In such a case, the AEMC will publish the written submission with the confidential information omitted in relevant parts of the submission accompanied in each case with a note stating that the confidential information has been omitted from the published submission.
2.4 Right to make written submissions (section 254 of the NERL)
Any person may make a written submission to the AEMC on the proposed Rule before the closing date for submissions.
2.5 Public Hearing before the draft Rule determination (section 255 of the NERL)
The AEMC may (but is not required to) hold a public hearing on the proposed Rule before it makes a draft Rule determination.