ARCHIVED - Telecom Order CRTC 2012-575
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Ottawa, 18 October 2012
Determination of costs award with respect to the participation of the Public Interest Advocacy Centre in the proceeding initiated by Bell Aliant Regional Communications, Limited Partnership and Bell Canada’s application to review and vary Telecom Regulatory Policy 2012-83
File numbers: 8662-B54-201205386 and 4754-407
1. By letter dated 9 July 2012, the Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC) applied for costs with respect to its participation in the proceeding initiated by Bell Aliant Regional Communications, Limited Partnership and Bell Canada’s (collectively, the Bell companies) application to review and vary Telecom Regulatory Policy 2012-83 (the proceeding).
2. On 16 July 2012, the Bell companies filed an intervention in response to PIAC’s application.
3. PIAC submitted that it had met the criteria for an award of costs set out in section 68 of the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission Rules of Practice and Procedure (the Rules of Procedure) because it represented a group or class of subscribers that had an interest in the outcome of the proceeding, it had assisted the Commission in developing a better understanding of the matters that were considered, and it had participated in a responsible way.
4. PIAC requested that the Commission fix its costs at $7,059.68, consisting entirely of legal fees. PIAC’s claim included the Ontario Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) on fees less the rebate to which PIAC is entitled in connection with the HST. PIAC filed a bill of costs with its application.
5. PIAC submitted that the Bell companies are the appropriate parties to be required to pay any costs awarded by the Commission (the costs respondents).
6. In response to the application, the Bell companies submitted that they had no objection to PIAC’s entitlement to costs or the amounts claimed.
Commission’s analysis and determinations
7. The Commission finds that PIAC has satisfied the criteria for an award of costs set out in section 68 of the Rules of Procedure. Specifically, the Commission finds that PIAC represented a group or class of subscribers that had an interest in the outcome of the proceeding, it assisted the Commission in developing a better understanding of the matters that were considered, and it participated in a responsible way.
8. The Commission notes that the rates claimed in respect of legal fees are in accordance with the rates established in the Commission’s Guidelines for the Assessment of Costs, as set out in Telecom Regulatory Policy 2010-963. The Commission finds that the total amount claimed by PIAC was necessarily and reasonably incurred and should be allowed.
9. The Commission considers that this is an appropriate case in which to fix the costs and dispense with taxation, in accordance with the streamlined procedure set out in Telecom Public Notice 2002-5.
10. The Commission finds that the appropriate costs respondents to PIAC’s costs application are the Bell companies.
11. The Commission notes that Bell Canada filed submissions in the proceeding on behalf of the Bell companies. Consistent with its general approach articulated in Telecom Costs Order 2002-4, the Commission makes Bell Canada responsible for payment on behalf of the Bell companies, and leaves it to the Bell companies to determine the appropriate allocation of the costs among themselves.
Directions regarding costs
12. The Commission approves the application by PIAC for costs with respect to its participation in the proceeding.
13. Pursuant to subsection 56(1) of the Telecommunications Act, the Commission fixes the costs to be paid to PIAC at $7,059.68.
14. The Commission directs that the award of costs to PIAC be paid forthwith by Bell Canada on behalf of the Bell companies.
- Regulatory measure associated with single-line inside wire services provided by incumbent local exchange carriers to customers with no jack-ended demarcation device, Telecom Regulatory Policy CRTC 2012-83, 9 February 2012
- Revision of CRTC costs award practices and procedures, Telecom Regulatory Policy CRTC 2010-963, 23 December 2010
- New procedure for Telecom costs awards, Telecom Public Notice CRTC 2002-5, 7 November 2002
- Action Réseau Consommateur, the Consumers’ Association of Canada, Fédération des associations coopératives d’économie familiale and the National Anti-Poverty Organization application for costs – Public Notice CRTC 2001-60, Telecom Costs Order CRTC 2002-4, 24 April 2002
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