Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission
Symbol of the Government of Canada

Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2012-233

PDF version

Route reference: Part 1 application posted on 17 October 2011

Ottawa, 23 April 2012

CKPM-FM Radio Ltd.
Port Moody, British Columbia

Application 2011-1352-1

CKPM-FM Port Moody – Technical change

The Commission approves an application to change the technical parameters of the English-language commercial radio station CKPM-FM Port Moody by relocating the transmitter site, by increasing the average effective radiated power from 470 to 540 watts (directional antenna), and by increasing the effective height of the antenna above average terrain from -193.2 metres to -155.1 metres.

The Commission also extends the time limit to implement CKPM-FM until 30 November 2012.

The application

1.        The Commission received an application by CKPM-FM Radio Ltd. (CKPM-FM Radio) to change the technical parameters of the English-language commercial radio programming undertaking CKPM-FM by relocating the transmitter site, by increasing the average effective radiated power (ERP) from 470 to 540 watts (directional antennal), and by increasing the effective height of the antenna above average terrain (EHAAT) from -193.2 to -155.1 metres. All other technical parameters would remain unchanged.

2.        The applicant submitted that it has been unable to implement the original transmitter site because the owner of the site has moved on to other enterprises. As a result, it has become necessary to find another transmitter site for the station.

3.        The Commission received an intervention opposing the application from South Asian Broadcasting Corporation Inc. (SABC) and an intervention commenting on the application from Corus Entertainment Inc. (Corus). The public record for this application can be found on the Commission’s website at www.crtc.gc.ca, under “Public Proceedings.”

Commission’s analysis and decisions

4.        After reviewing the public record for this application, and in light of applicable regulations and policies, the Commission considers that the issues to be addressed in its determinations are as follows:

  • Should the application be returned because of an error in service?
  • Would approval of the application result in an unacceptable expansion of the station’s service area beyond Port Moody, Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam?
  • Should approval be subject to a condition of licence restricting CKPM-FM from broadcasting third-language programming?

Should the application be returned because of an error in service?

5.        SABC, operator of the ethnic station CKYE-FM Vancouver, submitted that the applicant had not properly served it with a copy of the application properly since it had sent the application to the wrong email address. CKPM-FM Radio acknowledged the error, but noted that SABC did finally receive the application and was able to file an intervention.

6.        The Commission considers that the error was made in good faith and that SABC was still able to file an intervention. The Commission therefore finds that no procedural harm was incurred and that there is no need to return the application.

Would approval of the application result in an unacceptable expansion of CKPM-FM’s service area beyond Port Moody, Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam?

Interventions

7.        SABC submitted that, in Licensing of new radio stations to serve the Vancouver Radio market, Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2008-117, 30 May 2008, CKPM-FM Radio was authorized to operate a station to serve Port Moody, Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam. SABC was of the view that approval of the current application would result in the station’s signal encroaching on Burnaby and New Westminster, two municipalities that were not in the original service area and that are within the coverage area of SABC’s station CKYE-FM. SABC submitted that CKPM-FM should operate within its current service area by reducing the proposed power and using a more directional antenna system.

8.        Corus expressed concern that approval of the new transmitter site could position CKPM-FM for a further application to increase its power and extend its signal into adjacent markets served by other broadcasters, including Corus.

Applicant’s reply

9.        With respect to the concerns raised by SABC, CKPM-FM Radio submitted that, under the application, the 3 mV/m contour is only nominally increased and would retain a footprint that is very close to that of the one proposed in its original application for a licence. While the 0.5 mV/m contour is larger, CKPM-FM Radio submitted that, if it were to reduce power, the 3 mV/m contour would virtually disappear. CKPM-FM Radio further noted that the proposed antenna system is directional and specifically designed to achieve an oblong shape covering Port Moody and eastward areas. In addition, CKPM-FM Radio indicated that a complete re-engineering of the antenna system, as suggested by SABC, had not been presented by CKPM-FM Radio’s engineers as a possible option.

10.    In response to Corus, CKPM-FM Radio confirmed that it is not contemplating a subsequent application to increase its power. It re-iterated that the purpose of the application was to receive approval for another transmitter site since the original site was no longer available.

Commission’s decision

11.    The Commission is of the view that, under the proposed technical parameters, the station would still principally serve Port Moody, Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam. It notes that the applicant had no option but to move the transmitter to a new site, and that the new transmitter site is less than 1 kilometre from that which was originally proposed. While there will be a slight increase to the EHAAT and average ERP, the maximum ERP will remain the same at 1,000 watts.

12.    The Commission further considers that the use of a directional antenna will minimize increases in service to other areas in comparison to what would be achieved with a non-directional antenna. The Commission further notes that any application to increase power would be subject to a separate public process. Accordingly, the Commission finds that approval of the application would not result in an unacceptable expansion of CKPM-FM’s service area beyond Port Moody, Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam.

Should approval be subject to a condition of licence restricting CKPM-FM from broadcasting third-language programming?

13.    Under section 7(3) of the Radio Regulations, 1986, radio stations that are not ethnic stations are permitted to devote up to 15% of the broadcast week to third-language programs.

Interventions

14.    SABC submitted that, should the application be approved, CKPM-FM should be subject to a condition of licence prohibiting it from broadcasting any third language programming. This would prevent CKPM-FM from competing with SABC’s ethnic station CKYE-FM, Vancouver.

Applicant’s reply

15.    CKPM-FM Radio noted that such a condition of licence would prevent it from providing programming to any ethnic groups, including those not served by CKYE-FM. CKPM-FM Radio indicated that it would be willing to accept a condition of licence that would ensure that CKPM-FM would not devote any portion of the broadcast week to programming in South Asian languages.

Commission’s decision

16.    The Commission notes that the flexibility to devote not more than 15% of the broadcast week to third-language programming is provided to commercial radio stations in order to permit them to reflect the communities they serve while providing ethnic stations with some protection in view of their obligation to provide broad service. The maximum amount of third-language programming permitted under this regulation is only approximately 19 hours per week. The Commission does not consider that it is necessary to further restrict the amount of third-language programming that CKPM-FM may broadcast, as suggested by SABC.

Conclusion

17.    In light of all of the above, the Commission approves the application by CKPM-FM Radio Ltd. to change the technical parameters of the English-language commercial radio programming undertaking CKPM-FM by relocating the transmitter site, by increasing the average effective radiated power from 470 to 540 watts (directional antenna), and by increasing the effective height of the antenna above average terrain from -193.2 to -155.1 metres.

18.    Given that it was necessary for the applicant to submit an application to change its technical parameters, the Commission extends the deadline to implement CKPM-FM until 30 November 2012.

Secretary General

*This decision is to be appended to the licence.