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ARCHIVED -  Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2007-350

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Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2007-350

  Ottawa, 7 September 2007
  Corus Premium Television Ltd.
Winnipeg, Manitoba
  Application 2007-0701-0, received 7 May 2007
Broadcasting Public Notice CRTC 2007-57
29 May 2007
 

CJOB Winnipeg - New FM transmitter in Winnipeg

  The Commission denies an application to amend the broadcasting licence for CJOB Winnipeg in order to operate an FM transmitter in Winnipeg.
 

Introduction

1.

The Commission received an application by Corus Premium Television Ltd. (Corus) to amend the broadcasting licence for the English-language AM radio programming undertaking CJOB Winnipeg in order to operate an FM transmitter in Winnipeg.

2.

The new transmitter would operate at 106.3 MHz (channel 292C1) with an effective radiated power of 100,000 watts.

3.

The licensee stated that adding an FM transmitter to broadcast the programming of CJOB would allow the station to address certain signal deficiencies encountered in the downtown core and outlying areas. It added that an FM transmitter would help the station reach its traditional audience while also allowing it to reach a younger demographic that is more likely to tune to the FM band for its radio needs.

4.

In support of its application, Corus noted that the Commission recently approved applications by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) to add FM rebroadcasting transmitters to various AM stations in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.1 According to Corus, CJOB is experiencing similar technical difficulties to those highlighted by the CBC in its applications.

5.

The Commission received several interventions in support of and in opposition to the Corus application. The interventions and the replies to the interventions are available at the Commission's Web site at www.crtc.gc.ca under "Public Proceedings."

6.

After reviewing the applications and interventions, the Commission is of the view that there are two primary issues to be considered:
 
  • How does the Corus application compare to previous similar applications?
 
  • Would approval of the Corus application violate the common ownership policy?
 

How does the Corus application compare to previous similar applications?

 

The CBC applications

7.

Traditionally the Commission has considered on a case-by-case basis applications for FM transmitters to be located within the coverage contours of AM stations to supplement coverage to areas experiencing reduced signal quality due to any number of sources of interference. As noted above, the Commission recently approved similar applications by the CBC to add lower power FM frequencies to supplement the coverage of AM stations in various urban areas. The CBC argued that such transmitters would mitigate signal deficiencies caused by interference inherent to urban development.

8.

Although the Corus application is similar to the CBC applications, the Corus application distinguishes itself from those of the CBC in that it seeks to address signal deficiencies arising from night-time signal reductions that are required by condition of licence. The Commission notes that night-time reception of CJOB in the south of Winnipeg has likely always been poor and Winnipeg's urbanization is not a recent phenomenon. Corus is also proposing a full power retransmitter whose reach would surpass its current AM coverage area to the west and south, while the CBC proposed lower power transmitters that would broadcast within the original contours of its stations. Moreover, unlike the CBC, Corus is not mandated under the Broadcasting Act to be available throughout Canada as resources become available. The Commission therefore considers that despite some similarities between the Corus application and the CBC applications, they are significantly different in many respects.
 

Other similar applications

9.

In addition to the CBC applications, the Commission has generally approved applications for nested FM transmitters in cases where the applications were made to supplement coverage in principal market areas. Unlike Corus's application, however, such applications proposed Class A or low-power transmitters.
 

Would approval of the Corus application violate the common ownership policy?

10.

The Commission's common ownership policy for radio permits a licensee in a market with eight commercial stations or more operating in a given language to own or control as many as two AM and two FM stations in that language.

11.

Corus currently owns and operates one AM and two FM stations in the Winnipeg market. While the Commission recognizes that the station would continue broadcasting as an AM service, it agrees with some of the interveners and considers that the addition of the proposed transmitter under the technical parameters proposed would result in Corus having three FM presences in Winnipeg.
 

Conclusion

12.

Based on the foregoing, the Commission denies the application by Corus Premium Television Ltd. to amend the broadcasting licence for the English-language AM radio programming undertaking CJOB Winnipeg in order to operate an FM transmitter in Winnipeg.
  Secretary General
 

Related documents

 
  • CBK Regina, CHFA and CBX Edmonton, CKSB St-Boniface and CBW Winnipeg, and CBR Calgary - Addition of FM transmitters, Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2006-84, 16 March 2006
 
  • Commercial Radio Policy 1998, Public Notice CRTC 1998-41, 30 April 1998
  This decision is available in alternative format upon request, and may also be examined in PDF format or in HTML at the following Internet site: www.crtc.gc.ca 
  Footnote

[1] See Broadcasting Decision 2006-84

Date Modified: 2007-09-07