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Charges for new 2LD April 2001


MOVED: That the application fee charged for processing an application for a new second level domain name within .nz beyond the straw poll be scaled in accordance with the number of votes in the straw poll as follows:

200-499 votes: $6,000
500-999 votes: $7,000
1000- votes: $9,000

These charges are exclusive of GST and include a deposit of $1,000 to be lodged with the original application. The deposit will be refunded if the straw poll fails and credited to the application fee if the poll succeeds. The deposit will be retained by the Society if the straw poll succeeds and the applicant decides not to continue with the application.


The Society's Procedure for Establishing a New Second Level Domain Name Within .nz states, "If the poll succeeds, the applicant will be required to pay a non-refundable application fee to advance the proposal." We were asked by Council to consider an appropriate amount for this application fee.

We examined the costs of each remaining step in the process. Some costs were reasonable to quantify:

Advertising - 6 papers x 2 ads @ $300 = $3,600
Webtime - 30 hours @ $50/hr = $1,500
Admin time for mailouts - 15 hrs @ $20/hr = $300
ED time, e.g., media releases, media calls 10 @$38.50/hr = $385
Consumables (photocopying, postage etc) = $150
Total estimateable = $5,935

Other costs are highly variable and depend on the level of interest in a particular application. This includes such items as handling submissions, press interviews, responding to queries etc.

For this reason we have proposed a base fee of $6,000 with increments where a higher level of interest is indicated by the number of votes in the straw poll. The base fee covers costs which are constant (advertising) or increase only slightly with interest (consumables, media releases). The incremental fee is intended to recognise the additional workload (submissions on web, fielding media calls) that would arise from an application with many submissions and high media interest. The number of votes is the best a priori metric we could identify for estimating the workload.

Current policy is that ISOCNZ funds the cost of the process up to and including the straw poll. This opens the Society to possible abuse through applicants which have no intention of proceeding beyond the straw poll. For this reason we recommend that a deposit of $1,000 be required with each application. This deposit would be refunded if the straw vote failed or credited to the application fee if the poll succeeded. It would be defaulted to the Society if and only if the poll succeeded and the applicant decided not to continue.

There was some concern that the scale of the fee would discourage "public good" applications. Rather than try to anticipate what would constitute a "public good" application at sometime in the future we prefer to simply note that Council could vote to pay part or all of an application fee on behalf of an applicant if it deemed that to be an appropriate action at the time. (This would also be the appropriate solution if the application fee was due to the ccTLD Manager, who would not have the public good role that the Society sees for itself.)

John Hine
Steven Heath
Sue Leader

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