TRANSCRIPT OF PROCEEDINGS
FOR THE CANADIAN RADIO-TELEVISION AND
TRANSCRIPTION DES AUDIENCES DU
CONSEIL DE LA RADIODIFFUSION
ET DES TÉLÉCOMMUNICATIONS CANADIENNES
SUBJECT / SUJET:
APPLICATIONS FOR FM RADIO LICENCES
DEMANDES DE LICENCES DE RADIO FM
Hilton Vancouver Metrotown
Hilton Vancouver Metrotown
Room Crystal III
Salle Crystal III
6083 McKay Avenue
6083, avenue McKay
November 24, 2000
Le 24 novembre 2000
In order to meet the requirements of the Official Languages
Act, transcripts of proceedings before the Commission will be
bilingual as to their covers, the listing of the CRTC members
and staff attending the public hearings, and the Table of
However, the aforementioned publication is the recorded
verbatim transcript and, as such, is taped and transcribed in
either of the official languages, depending on the language
spoken by the participant at the public hearing.
Afin de rencontrer les exigences de la Loi sur les langues
officielles, les procès-verbaux pour le Conseil seront
bilingues en ce qui a trait à la page couverture, la liste des
membres et du personnel du CRTC participant à l'audience
publique ainsi que la table des matières.
Toutefois, la publication susmentionnée est un compte rendu
textuel des délibérations et, en tant que tel, est enregistrée
et transcrite dans l'une ou l'autre des deux langues
officielles, compte tenu de la langue utilisée par le
participant à l'audience publique.
Canadian Radio-television and
Conseil de la radiodiffusion et des
Transcript / Transcription
APPLICATIONS FOR FM RADIO LICENCES
DEMANDES DE LICENCES DE RADIO FM
BEFORE / DEVANT:
Chairperson / Présidente
Commissioner / Conseillère
Commissioner / Conseiller
Commissioner / Conseillère
Commissioner / Conseiller
ALSO PRESENT / AUSSI PRÉSENTS:
Legal Counsel / Conseiller juridique
Hearing Manager / Gérant de l'audience
Secretary / Secrétaire
Hilton Vancouver Metrotown
Hilton Vancouver Metrotown
Room Crystal III
Salle Crystal III
6083 McKay Avenue
6083, avenue McKay
November 24, 2000
Le 24 novembre 2000
TABLE OF CONTENTS / TABLE DES MATIÈRES
APPLICATION BY / APPLICATION PAR
Simon Fraser Campus Radio Society
APPLICATION BY / APPLICATION PAR
Central Island Broadcasting Ltd.
APPLICATION BY / APPLICATION PAR
Radio Malaspina Society
APPLICATION BY / APPLICATION PAR
Rogers Broadcasting In-Chief Presentation
Vancouver, British Columbia / Vancouver (C-B)
--- Upon resuming on Friday, November 24, 2000
at 0900 / L'audience reprend le vendredi
24 novembre 2000 à 0900
7371 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good morning.
7372 We start precisely on time. We don't always end precisely on time, but we start on time.
7373 Madam Secretary.
7374 MS VOGEL: Thank you, Madam Chair.
7375 Perhaps at the beginning, I might remind people who have cell phones, if you could either turn them off or set them to vibrate, that would be very helpful.
7376 Our first item today is the application by Simon Fraser Campus Radio Society for a broadcasting licence to carry on an English-language FM radio programming undertaking at Simon Fraser University and surrounding area.
7377 The new station would operate on frequency 90.9 megahertz, with an effective radiated power of 450 watts.
7378 The applicant proposes to replace the current carrier service it operates at SFU with an FM station.
7379 Would you please begin whenever you are ready.
7380 Thank you.
APPLICATION / APPLICATION
7381 MR. THYVOLD: Thank you very much. We are very pleased to be here today.
7382 I would just like to quickly introduce our panel and then we will get on with our presentation.
7383 My name is Magnus Thyvold, I am Station Manager of CJSF. I have been involved in campus community radio for 14 years at this station and another station in Victoria, and I am a current Vice-President and Past-President of the National Campus and Community Radio Association.
7384 MS FETTERLY: Good morning. My name is Sherri Fetterly. I am currently on the Board of Directors of the Simon Fraser Campus Radio Society. I have a background in media and I have been involved in campus community radio for the past seven years.
7385 MS ASPINWALL: Good morning. My name is Emily Aspinwall. I am the Spoken Word Co-Ordinator at CJSF radio. I am a community activist and I have been involved in campus community radio for about five years. I have been involved in four different stations in both Ontario and British Columbia.
7386 MR. CHUNG: Hello. My name is Anthony Chung, I am the Program Co-Ordinator at CJSF radio. I have been involved in campus community radio for about three years now, during which time I have done many things including weekly programming a radio show at CJSF radio.
7387 MR. BLAKE: Good morning. My name is Ed Blake and I have been involved with campus radio since 1984, starting in Ontario and moving out here in 1990. During that time I have been involved with CJSM, CITR and CFRO. Currently I am a programmer at CFRO and CJSF and the Music Co-Ordinator there as well.
7388 MS TOY: Good morning. My name is Lisa Toy, I am a communications major at SFU and I have been involved at CJSF for just over a year now as a general volunteer and I am presently the Public Relations Co-ordinator at the station.
7389 MR. CHAN: Good morning. My name is Trevor Chan and I have been involved with CJSF radio since 1989 and I am also a former member of the board of directors.
7390 MR. CONDON: Good morning. My name is Sean Condon. I have been involved at CJSF for the past year. I am the Training Co-ordinator at the station and a programmer and got involved in campus community radio after 10 years in mainstream media, in newspapers.
7391 MR. THYVOLD: Thank you.
7392 Just to get going here, then, the Simon Fraser Campus Radio Society has come a long way to be here. We have committed enormous time, energy and resources into preparations for this day. Next week, we celebrate our 26th anniversary, marking 26 years of closed circuit service from CJSF, together with 20 year of low power AM broadcast service to the campus and 15 years of cable service to the surrounding communities.
7393 This date also marks many years of membership in both the National Campus and Community Radio Association and the World Association of Community Broadcasters. No less significant, it marks the passage of thousands of active volunteers through the doors of the radio station.
7394 The Vancouver area is a large and diverse region and the need for programming to serve the many communities within it remains great. CJSF has been producing such programming for years, but its ability to serve these communities has been limited by the shortness of its reach. In an era of media consolidation, the diversity and independence of CJSF's programming is needed more than ever.
7395 Our financial position is strong and stable. Core funding for operations is provided through student fees voted by referendum. This is not likely to change, for any changes to the funding must be passes by a new referendum of all the undergraduate students. CJSF has historically received strong support from SFU students. In the last referendum, in 1996, we received 75 per cent support for the proposed increase in fees.
7396 The fee is based on a per-student amount. Increasing enrolment at SFU, which is expected to continue in the future, has provided annual increases on total fees received to offset cost increases due to inflation.
7397 The current level of funding is comfortably sufficient to meet the station's operational needs for the foreseeable future. CJSF has a long history of sound financial management and a proven ability to live and thrive within its means. Additional fundraising initiatives will provide the means for growth but are not essential to the success of our plans. We are ready to go.
7398 CJSF has been planning for FM for a long time. A special project budget has been established for the purchase and installation of the transmitter facility, and money has been set aside and a loan obtained to fund the project and ensure that it will be completed on time. The money available provides for a comfortable cushion to deal with unexpected expenses or problems. This funding is ready to go right now and, if granted the licence, CJSF will be able to start work on establishing its transmitter and tower immediately.
7399 As a campus community broadcaster, it is our goal to serve the community in which we live. In order to effectively reach as many people as we can, we need to be on the FM band. With our location on Burnaby Mountain we will reach out to communities not currently served by other community-based radio. Because of its location, we will be accessible to and draw more volunteers from the surrounding areas such as Burnaby, New Westminster, Coquitlam, Port Moody, Port Coquitlam, Surrey, and others, that will give the station a distinct voice different from other Vancouver broadcasters.
7400 MS ASPINWALL: CJSF has had diverse and creative programming throughout its history. It is a place where local communities, who have little access to other forms of media, can work together to share news, culture, music and ideas. This representation is essential in maintaining healthy and growing communities.
7401 Our programmers have deep roots in the community and bring a wealth of knowledge, enthusiasm and commitment to the station. Currently, 95 per cent of our programming is produced by station volunteers.
7402 Campus and community radio is one of the few places that communities such as the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered community, various ethnic communities, the disabled community, as well as many others can have voices given to the issues that they face.
7403 It also gives people the opportunity to get involved in the training, programming and general running of the station. For example, the Community Living Society, an organization that supports people living with disabilities, has had a long-standing relationship with CJSF. With the assistance of their support workers, we provide training and programming opportunities to the clients of the Community Living Society.
7404 We currently fulfil our 25 per cent commitment to spoken word programming and are continually strengthening its quality and diversity. We see the FM licence as part of this process of building.
7405 We have recently created and hired a part-time position to focus solely on spoken word programming. Spoken word programming takes a lot of time and work to produce even a short segment. With an FM licence we will have more people to draw on to put together programming and volunteers will be inspired and motivated by the increased listenership.
7406 Spoken word programming at CJSF covers a wide array of issues, including environmental and transportation, women's rights, First Nations, campus-based, alternative health, and more. Interviews, panel discussions and news highlight under-represented stories, perspectives and ideas. We also sponsor and promote local speaking events and air them as part of our spoken word component.
7407 We have several collective shows that work together to produce weekly programs. These include news, arts and entertainment, house music, as swell as a magazine-style show covering local social justice issues. This provides volunteers an excellent opportunity to learn to work together with others, and also create more effectively produced programming.
7408 We have an entire department at CJSF that devotes itself to the local arts, culture and entertainment scene. The department organizes volunteers to do reviews and interviews in all areas of the arts, including theatre, music, film, poetry, literature, and dance. A main theme is the promotion of emerging, local and under-represented artists. This is one of the few on-air opportunities these artists have to express their works and themselves.
7409 On FM our arts programming will include such things as radio plays, on-air radio art and more live local performances.
7410 One highlight of our current arts programming is our weekly poetry show, with Kier and Carolina. It features readings and interviews with local poets, and helps these artists share their works with a larger audience.
7411 We also feature community calendars, with local arts events, as well as public service announcements concerning community meetings, speakers and other local non-profit events.
7412 We have a position at CJSF devoted to soliciting, compiling and making these community announcements available to programmers. We encourage organizations to come into the station, to help in producing recorded announcements about the services their organization offers. This helps promote their work and gives them the opportunity to come into CJSF and realize that this is their station and they can be a part of it in a variety of ways.
7413 MR. CHUNG: Another position at CJSF works on strengthening connections with non-profit organizations and letting them know what we offer. We have had great response to this initiative. Recently, the New Westminster Purpose Society came to us and proposed the idea of doing focused programming for World Aids Day.
7414 CJSF regularly produces special days of programming, which are unique opportunities to highlight in-depth local perspectives on a particular subject. This day-long focus is an excellent way to make connections with people in the community working on these issues and to thoroughly investigate all angles of the subject. These special days of programming occur several times throughout the year and are produced by our volunteers in conjunction with the affiliated community.
7415 Two upcoming examples are World Aids Day on December 1st and Working to End Violence Against Women on December 6th.
7416 The community response and involvement that develops through our special days of programming is often phenomenal. Of particular note is the recent National Campus/Community Radio Conference declaration for an annual National Hip Hop week. This development came directly from the overwhelming success of CJSF's Hip Hop Week created two years ago by volunteers at CJSF.
7417 The music programming on our airwaves is creative, innovative and diverse. We are always encouraging people to bring in new and original programming ideas. The nature of our programming allows us to provide airtime for the inclusion of many musical styles not available anywhere else on the FM dial.
7418 We have several programs that combine spoken word and music and these are breaking new ground in radio programming. One example of this is our Thursday evening show, Bad Music for Bad People, where Alex and Jovan blend an original mix of alternative economic and political information with a range of electronic music.
7419 With an FM licence we also plan to expand our ethnic programming. We know that there are dozens of currently unserved ethnic communities in our area and we have begun to more actively reach out to them.
7420 We are in contact with other campus and community station in the Lower Mainland. We often work together on projects and share resources. We know that CJSF will be able to reach and be accessible to physical locations and communities that these stations are not able to serve. We work to complement these stations, not to compete. CJSF works to diversity our programming beyond what is already offered by both these stations.
7421 With an FM licence our programming would be able to reach out farther into the community, and be accessible to thousands of people. We have tremendous resources, and see the potential to be more known and available, as a great asset to the community.
7422 MR. BLAKE: Our music department is enviable in a number of ways. In the music industry, we are regarded as one of THE stations to service. Due to this servicing CJSF boasts a vast archival collection where its size is matched only by its accessibility.
7423 The on-air room provides an array of music that represents any number of different genres and dissimilar artists. This is very new music, most of which is less than four months old. There are nearly 10,000 music selections for programmers to choose from in the on-air room alone, and within this large number there is sufficient representation of Canadian artists to satisfy the needs of both the programmers and the CRTC. Given its reputation, CJSF is one THE places where listeners are able to access and hear all sorts of new and interesting music.
7424 The music department is concerned foremost with developing local talent, though significant efforts are taken to help regional and national talent as well. Airplay for these artists is not limited to polished offerings from established bands or record labels.
7425 By its very nature music not static. CJSF would rather be getting homemade or independent recordings, not only to give the artists exposure but to remain current on the trends that determine the evolution of music.
7426 Making independent recordings accessible to programmers, who in turn give them airplay, helps us develop local and Canadian talent. The emerging artists are given exposure that would most likely not be given otherwise.
7427 MS TOY: CJSF is also involved in developing and organizing various community-oriented events. With these events, we strive to bring increased exposure to emerging artists and groups.
7428 We are best known for our weekly Live Band Nights held at the student Pub. The aim of this event is to provide exposure for local independent musicians. This event, though only several months old, has received overwhelming response, both from the musicians involved and the people in attendance.
7429 Other events we have held include Hip Hop Hunger, Propriosessions and weekly DJ nights off campus.
7430 We also host a series of outdoor broadcasts on campus, which we use to expose the community to non-mainstream media and support events held by other groups. With an FM licence, we look forward to sponsoring and developing even more events both on and off campus.
7431 CJSF also strives to provide access to all ages and groups in its vicinity. Open houses are held each semester, where we invite high school students, community groups and SFU students to attend.
7432 We are also a part of the Mini-University program each summer, where we orient youths aged 8 to 14 years to broadcasting and alternative media. We also accept several high school career placements each semester, where they function as programmers and assistants in the daily activities of the station.
7433 MR. CONDON: There is continual interest from people on campus and in the surrounding community who want to participate in existing programming, bring in proposals for new shows, or simply learn how to use station facilities in an effort to better know what goes on at CJSF.
7434 Once grounded in the mandate and opportunities of CJSF in volunteer orientation, prospective programmers enter a four-part training program. The mechanics of speaking on-air and working the broadcast board are of undeniable importance. But, more to the point, training sessions reinforce the commitment and responsibility of volunteering at CJSF.
7435 Trainees at CJSF are introduced to the stations code of conduct, CRTC and Broadcast Act regulations and other legal responsibilities of being on-air. Prospective programmers are also acquainted with music and program log requirements and with our own minimum requirements for airing public service announcements.
7436 Before completing training, volunteers make a half-hour demo tape in which their proficiency with studio equipment and their awareness of station mandate and requirements are put to the test. Throughout this training process, volunteers are shown the importance of responsiveness and respect. Someone is always listening.
7437 Once training is completed, volunteers may undergo further training in interviewing and spoken word programming and in studio production. All volunteers who go on to be programmers sign a Promise of Performance document. New and existing programs are regularly monitored by the programming department and the programming subcommittee, to ensure volunteers are meeting quality standards taught in training.
7438 Our training has produced some very passionate and dedicated programmers. The accomplishments of many volunteers in producing award-winning programming, as was the case with CJSF's Get A Job series in 1996, and going on to work in other media is the result, in part, of the training we provide.
7439 MR. CHAN: My name is Trevor. I am here to change the tone of the presentation slightly.
7440 I am basically here today just to give a personal account of the experiences I have had with CJSF radio. So I guess you can think of my presentation of sort of a case study of the different volunteers who have been at the station over the last couple of years.
7441 I first started at CJSF in 1989 when my high school radio club had a show called The Youth Show up at the station, and we would be up there every Saturday morning at 10:00 in the morning. Well, it was supposed to be a talk show, but, I don't know about you, but most teenagers don't seem to be awake at 10:00 in the morning so we ended up changing this talk show into more of a music show and we just ended up playing all our favourite songs.
7442 A year later I graduated and I started attending Simon Fraser University. School can really get you down sometimes and so to escape the vigours of academia what I ended up doing was spending a lot of time at the radio station.
7443 So in 1992 my brother and myself, we started a radio show and every Friday night -- and we still do it to this day and now it is the longest running urban music program in Vancouver's history.
7444 But during this time I did more stuff than just program. What I also did was, I was urban music director for a little while. I helped the radio station establish like a streaming media service, so we are doing MP3 streaming, which when we first started it was pretty cool. It was pretty rebellious back then. Not too many people were doing it, but we are cutting edge guys.
7445 I have also been the Treasurer on the Board of Directors in the last little while. It is more of an official capacity.
7446 So despite all this experience, I never really had actively pursued a career in the broadcast media industry, it was something I just did for fun. But I don't know, every time I have switched careers and done new things I have always had a media component to it.
7447 So anyway, for the past three years I have been involved in the hi-tech sector and in streaming media, which is a pretty cool experience. This past summer I actually quit my job at an Internet start-up. Now, it wasn't because my stock was doing bad or anything like that, it was, you know, I just -- someone just gave me the opportunity to become a rock star actually --
--- Laughter / Rires
7448 MR. CHAN: -- so I checked this out.
7449 My brother and myself, we made a demo tape earlier in the year and we shopped it around to a couple of independent record labels and, believe it or not, some crazy label back in New York actually gave us a chance to become musicians. So for the past few months that is what we have been working on.
7450 But that is actually like more of a passion, like a labour of love really. I actually have a couple of day jobs as well, which are actually media-related.
--- Laughter / Rires
7451 MR. CHAN: You know how it is, musicians can never become a musician full-time, you always had to have like three day jobs. That's the way it is, right. So in my day job I am actually a video and new media producer and so we have recently created -- it's like an animated music video geared towards Internet. It went well actually and it is being prominently displayed on one of the top Internet sites out there. We also made a broadcast version which should be airing on TV stations across the world, which is pretty.
7452 Anyway, okay, enough. I think I have been spending too much time here just stroking my own ego and listening to my own words, so I want to -- there is actually like a point to my speech here.
--- Laughter / Rires
7453 COMMISSIONER CRAM: Good.
7454 MR. CHAN: So here's my point. Here's my point.
7455 My point is, there is a lot of creative and talented people who have volunteered at CJSF over the years. And I don't know what it is with this place, but there is a lot of creative and frenetic energy that goes on. I think it is a great training ground for people to get experience in the media entertainment and information world.
7456 Okay. Now, back to me again. I just want to end this off by saying, you know, I have spent a third of my life at the radio station. Like my entire adult life I have spent at CJSF and, for better or for worse, it has made me the person that I am today.
7457 Anyway, I am going to pass this off to Sherri Fetterly who is going to end off the presentation today on a better note than me.
7458 MS FETTERLY: I will add the conclusion.
7459 With more and more radio stations being owned by fewer and fewer players, the importance of independent community-based broadcasters such as CJSF has never been more apparent. The CRTC has identified preserving diversity within the radio market as a key goal of its policies, and this can only be done by making room for more independent voices.
7460 We bring a passionate commitment to community-oriented radio and provide an important local alternative to the offerings of commercial and public broadcasters. CJSF's role is to provide programming to serve many ethnic, social, economic and musical communities. We are doing just that, and doing it very well.
7461 All of our members are volunteers who do this for the love of it. They give their time, not only to belong to the community that is created through the broadcast waves, but also to the a part of the multi-faceted organization that is CJSF.
7462 We have the experience and resources of a diverse and committed group of people able to bring great radio to the Lower Mainland. Putting CJSF on the FM dial will not only add one new voice to the radio scene, but many.
7463 Thank you very much.
7464 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you very much.
7465 Thank you, Trevor, for your refreshing --
7466 Commissioner Pennefather will begin.
7467 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you, Madam Chair.
7468 Good morning, everyone. I'm jealous. I think I want to go back to university. That is what I say to my son who has just started at Ottawa U., but he is not so sure why I would want to do that, but he is not up much earlier than 10 year olds still. I don't understand it.
7469 I wanted to expand on some of the points you made this morning. In fact, you have provided us with some important clarification expansion on your supplementary brief, and thank you for that.
7470 But I would like to go into a couple of areas you have already touched on, some rather general questions and then I have some specifics about your application.
7471 I think what you have underlined this morning as your understanding of the role of campus radio, you are not new to the game, but since the new policy came out, it does just give us a chance to really highlight how that policy comes into action through approaches such as you are taking.
7472 That policy, as you well know, looks to Campus radio to really provide diversity in the system, both in music and in spoken word, to provide an alternative to what is available on commercial radio on the CBC and to really give a voice to the communities that you serve
7473 So let's explore those a little bit, more in terms of your particular approach.
7474 In the programming, And today you talked about both the music and spoken word aspects, so if we could just explore that a little bit more.
7475 On the music side, you described today your music approach and you do so in your supplementary brief. As a campus station you are involved in a variety of genre and some of those genres are world music, jazz, blues, categories that we have heard a little bit about in the last week in terms of that kind of music, urban as well, being available throughout the commercial systems, even now or potentially.
7476 Could you explain and clarify it for us again why your approach is different when we look at the words? We see similar words, world beat, jazz, rhythm and blues, hip hop, urban. What is it that makes the campus radio approach different?
7477 MR. BLAKE: Firstly, we are always looking for more volunteers, if you feel like coming.
--- Laughter / Rires
7478 MR. BLAKE: What makes us different is, first off, the sheer accessibility and the numbers available to -- of numbers of recordings available to people. We don't have a specific playlist of 50 or 100 or 150 songs for the programmers to pick from. Everything that is available is made available to the programmers.
7479 Also, the turnover is fairly quick. Recordings don't have a chance to stay for more than four to six months before they are taken from the on-air and put in the library.
7480 I make no distinction on any type of genre or anything like that, so we get it, it goes out, if you can get a chance to listen to it or play it.
7481 Does that about answer you?
7482 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Yes, I think so.
7483 The archival point you raised this morning, so you have an archival collection, but then you also say that it is very new music which is not more than four months old.
7484 MR. BLAKE: Yes, right. The archive, that is the library that everything just --
7485 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Okay, so it's both.
7486 MR. BLAKE: Yes.
7487 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: So what you are saying is that therefore you have this massive collection, you are not driven by the more recent new music.
7488 MR. CHUNG: I would like to add a few things.
7489 First off is that a lot of our music programmers are people who are very involved in the music community themselves, and they go out and seek new and alternative music that is not highly available. One term that we use in the hip hop community is "digging in the crates" where you are actually looking for artists that nobody knows of.
7490 Part of the reason a lot of people get involved in campus community radio is the ability to have free form in the programming that they are able to do and break new artists to the radio community, in a sense being like "Yes, I'm on top of this game and you come to me to find out what is new and what is exciting and what is emerging."
7491 That is part of a different approach from commercial radio, is that people are not held to advertising dollars or anything, so they are given more of a free range to explore deeper into the music shows they do.
7492 MR. THYVOLD: One of the things is that a lot of our programmers are hard core enthusiasts for the kind of music they are playing. Part of what this means is that they are on the very forefront of what is new. Artists, that unless you are really interested in that kind of music, even if you are a real music enthusiast in general, if you are not really into that kind of music you are not going to know this artist because, you know, they just have a record out on a tiny label and this is someone who read magazines that are obscure, much less artists that are obscure.
7493 So a lot of our programs are very far out on the leading edge of what is happening in any particular genre of music.
7494 I think in terms of the general programming we do, you will find any kind of emerging music will always show up as a program on a campus community station such as ours. Months, if not -- well, years usually before you will ever make it sway into the mainstream radio.
7495 Campus community radio stations have been programming world music, which we now have some stations wanting to get on -- commercial stations wanting to get on the air since the dawn of campus community radio. They have been programming that -- we have been programming that kind of music since before people decided world beat or world was a good term for it. It was just music for other cultures. And that is one of the big differences.
7496 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Right. Thanks.
7497 It is important to hear the approach behind the words, because we hear a lot, format, categories, all the rest of it, alternative, and I think it is not only with your experience but what you are planning to do with your new proposed station, it is important that we understand what is behind it.
7498 The other thing you mentioned this morning and in your supplementary brief was how both your music and spoken word complement CFRO and CITR as per the campus policy, but could you give me a specific example of how that is done?
7499 MS ASPINWALL: Well, we are in touch with both CITR and Co-Op Radio. I am familiar with their programming. So whenever we get a new proposal we don't just look at our own station, we look at the other stations as well. CFRO has a -- like if you look at their programming, and we are familiar with their programming and they have a focus on jazz, blues and sort of classical, other kinds of music like that, and they do that programming and they do that really well. You know, it is sort of a focus of theirs.
7500 They also have a lot of genre-oriented shows. We have more shows that aren't just specifically a jazz show or something else. We sort of create a mix of different kinds of music and things.
7501 MR. CHUNG: Could you repeat that for me, please?
7502 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: You mentioned in your supplementary brief and this morning that you complement, not compete with CFRO and CITR. In other words, it is interesting to hear from your point of view how you complement stations which are similar in mandate, as they are, so we can get a specific example of that.
7503 MS ASPINWALL: I think an important thing to note, too, is about in terms of spoken word programming, specifically about programming in general is the idea of serving a community. So if we look at CITR, for example, and you go out to Burnaby Mountain, you can't technically hear very often -- like the technical range or CITR, you often can't hear it.
7504 The idea of serving a community is the fact that we know what is going on in that community. We talk about the issues that affect people in that community. We are talking to the ethnic communities in the surrounding areas. We are talking about issues within that community, and that idea of serving the community, bringing volunteers up in that area and hence serving the community, it is not just who can hear it, but it is who we are serving.
7505 So that I think is a very important point in distinguishing us in terms of who we are going to serve with the differences between CITR and CFRO.
7506 I think also it is important note and to mention that there is such a wide range of programming that is possible. I mean, you just let your mind go on what kind of programming is possible and that is not out there.
7507 I mean, if you look at the programming on three stations right now, it is all quite distinct in itself. I mean, just because you are a campus community station doesn't mean you have the same kind of programming. Even if you are doing a hip hop show there are different, you know, ways and focuses and kinds of things you can do within that show that even though it is the same kind of music you have a different focus or you mix spoken word and music. I'm just sort of saying the ideas -- I mean the potential is great.
7508 MR. CHUNG: I would like to actually pick up on that point because she touched on the hip hop and that is something I am really familiar with.
7509 Down at Co-Op Radio the hip hop programming tends to be more of the mainstream commercial artists that are played on the airwaves and that tends to be the focus they have. We are talking more of -- I don't know if you are familiar with a few of them, Nelly and Puff Daddy. I don't know if those names mean anything to you. You might have children that listen to that.
7510 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: I think even I do occasionally.
7511 MR. CHUNG: Oh, you listen to it too.
--- Laughter / Rires
7512 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Amazing as it seems.
7513 MR. CHUNG: Wow!
7514 And at CITR down at UBC, they tend to have programs that focus between old school breaks and the original forms of music which hip hop has sampled from and old school hip hop, meaning eras of '88-'89 all the way through to '93. And at CJSF we have -- our hip hop shows tend to be a bit different.
7515 We have one that specifically is mixing spoken word and hip hop music by taking in-depth analyses at different cultural aspects of the hip hop culture, and we also do it a little differently in our shows because a lot of our shows do mixing, which is a new and a different approach to presenting the music as opposed to just playing it over the airwaves for everyone to hear.
7516 I will just end it there.
7517 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you.
7518 I wanted to pursue the discussion from a slightly different angle now in spoken word and music. As you have mentioned, and as the policy requires, campus stations play a very important role in cultural diversity and reflecting the cultural diversity of the communities you serve.
7519 I think I would like to get a little more specific about how you do that.
7520 Which are the ethnocultural groups with CJSF who will be serving on campus and in the communities? Can you tell us specifically which groups you will be serving with your proposed new station?
7521 MS ASPINWALL: I just wanted to mention off the top that we presently have a Latin American music and issues show, it is a Spanish and English show that covers both news and issues and music to the Latin American community, and also have an Arabian news, music and issues show as well.
7522 But in terms of the communities within the surrounding areas of Burnaby Mountain, there is a wide array of South Asian communities, a Filipino community and a variety of other Asian communities which are not presently served by other community broadcasters.
7523 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Have you done some research to confirm what you are proposing to do?
7524 MS ASPINWALL: We have looked up census data in terms of who lives in which region and things like that, if that is what you are referring to.
7525 Also, in terms of community contact, we have been working on a project recently of getting in touch with papers from the -- like community papers and making ourselves known to those communities through their papers and getting in touch with them so they know that we exist and making initial contact, like relationship through those papers. Because a lot of communities, you know, that is one source of media for them and communication is the community papers.
7526 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: One of the ways of looking at this is to --
7527 MR. THYVOLD: Could I just clarify something?
7528 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Oh, I'm sorry. Go ahead.
7529 MR. THYVOLD: One of the ways we approach this issue, because we have a very small staff, we have two and-a-half positions to run the whole station on our full programming week and a number of volunteers. So as much as we would love to be always out in the community in person soliciting all we can, part of the way we do it, as Emily just said, is we try to get our message out that we are there and we are available and then we are very responsive to what comes back to us from the community.
7530 So we try to make a real point of -- we get the message out there that, you know, opportunities are available and then we are responsive to what requests come back to us, as well as doing some more direct reaching out.
7531 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Is this what you mean in your supplementary brief and today by saying that you would expand your service to ethnocultural groups based on, and I quote "the interest and availability of volunteers"?
7532 MR. THYVOLD: Yes. We can't -- you know, I mean if we don't have people from that community, we can't sort of create it out of nothing. You don't serve a community by not involving its own members, so we try to solicit interest from the different communities and then see where we go with that.
7533 MS ASPINWALL: Just on this, I think it is important to note that this will be -- we are just limited within our reach right now so it is very difficult for most people on cable and the Internet and on residence, I mean that is where we are listenable to at the moment.
7534 So we see this as a reach out into the community and that is -- part of this will happen because people will be able to hear, like just to tune in to the -- like be able to get on their radio dial and tune into us and be hearing the fact that we exist and through that be able to expand in terms of letting people know that we are there and offering the service and be working on that reaching out.
7535 And in terms of ethnic programming as well, I think it is also important to note that 20 per cent of CFRO programming is ethnic-based programming. I think they have about 12 to 15 different programs on their station. In terms of serving those communities, we will very much liaise with what already exists in terms of their programming, specifically because they do a lot more ethnic programming than CITR, for example, in terms of which communities are served and talking to them about their experience with those different communities as well.
7536 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: So, as I understand it, if you receive a licence for this broader frequency, you would be increasing your efforts to reach volunteers?
7537 MR. CHUNG: Actually, we are currently working hard to increase it right now and one result of that is we have a Quebecois 101 show that tries to serve the Mallardville area in our locality.
7538 But, as mentioned before, one of the difficulties is the limited scope of accessibility to our airwaves at the current moment. And a lot of people, whether they be community members or students, often feel that they don't have the proper time or resources to dedicate themselves currently to broadcasting on CJSF and with the increased scope of the FM frequency I believe that a lot more people will see the value that we provide in being a campus community broadcaster and we anticipate a big, large rush from the same people that we have been approaching for a while to finally come to us and say "Yes, we would like to get involved."
7539 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Let's just keep going on this, just for a bit, because you have connected your reach and service to ethnocultural communities with your volunteers, and the campus policy also requires you to reflect cultural diversity in your employment practices as well as programming.
7540 In looking at your volunteer training program in Appendix 4 to your application -- I think it came with the deficiency letter of July 26 -- unless I am misreading it -- and you explained that volunteer policy this morning as well -- it seems to be aimed mostly at students.
7541 What steps would you be taking with this new -- if you had this new frequency, to expand that volunteer training?
7542 Can you give me some specific ideas of how you would do that to reach out to the communities, since you, yourselves, have said your service would largely -- is very connected with the interest and availability of volunteers from those communities?
7543 So how do you bring the two together?
7544 MR. THYVOLD: Well, one of the things we would be doing upon getting the FM would obviously be making a major effort within the community to tell people that we are now available. Part and parcel of that effort would be, not only are we available on the airwaves but we are available for people's participation.
7545 So that we would be going out -- you know, we have just been talking recently within the station about going out and setting up a table at various community events -- of all manners, not just serving ethnic communities but of all manners in the communities surrounding Simon Fraser. Setting up tables, information tables where we can talk to people, where they can ask us questions, where we can, you know, explain just how they can get involved.
7546 So we would be getting right out in the community and making a real effort, both to attract volunteers and also, of course, attract listeners by letting people know we are available.
7547 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: And one of the aspects of this is the competitive situation for this frequency, and this frequency, as you say, is one that will give you broader audience. So I am obviously interested in pursuing how you will, in your turn, take advantage of that frequency to fulfil your mandate as a campus station in a new way, other than the way you are currently doing.
7548 On that, just to another question. In answer to a deficiency question in that same letter July 26, you say you currently carry 1 per cent ethnic programming, of which half is third language.
7549 You can increase that third language programming, as per the policy. Do you have plans to do so?
7550 MS ASPINWALL: Yes. I mean, with talking about serving the ethnic communities, I think that is what I was talking about, increasing third language programming. Because I think that is -- if you really want to serve an ethnic community, speak in their first language and have that programming reflect the issues and things going on in that community and music and things like that.
7551 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: The key, then, is your approach to programming and your volunteer program, your volunteer training program, and that is how you get the people who will help you do that. Is that correct? Because your whole thesis I think, as I understand it, is your ethnocultural programming largely determined by the volunteers that you are able to attract to work with you, and the volunteers are largely from the student community now. I think 75 per cent of them are from the student community.
7552 So how do we -- it is important that we see how that balance is going to be changed.
7553 MR. THYVOLD: I got interrupted so I lost my train of thought there, but the thing is -- just give me a moment while I get back on track here.
7554 As I say, we can't create programming for a community that isn't represented within our volunteers. You know, a basic thesis of all our programming, but I think particularly our ethnic programming or other programming, focuses at a specific community.
7555 I will broaden that definition to include communities such as the gay and lesbian community and others, is that these communities should be speaking for themselves. You know, the idea isn't that CJSF -- CJSF puts a show on for these communities. That is not the idea. The idea is that people come from the communities to put a show on for themselves. In that sense we are facilitators of a community speaking to itself and speaking for itself. It is not --
7556 So the fact that our ability to serve these communities is based on our abilities to draw volunteers for those communities is pretty much the point.
7557 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: That is why I asked about the volunteer program, because it seems key.
7558 MR. THYVOLD: Yes.
7559 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: The training program is very complete in and of itself, except it is largely, as I read the application, succeeding at getting students as opposed to more of the ethnic community. So that is why we are asking the question.
7560 MR. THYVOLD: Well, the training program itself isn't focused at students. I think that might have crept into the response to that question simply because with the limit to our signal, in a real -- our presence on the campus, because we are right there, we just have to walk out the front door and we can talk to people, is, I think, quite high, whereas because of the limit of our signal our presence in the community is not nearly as high as we would like it and because of our limited resources it is really hard to get over that obstacle of -- you know, we can't --
7561 It is not enough for us to just tell people that we are out there and they can tune us in on the dial, we have to go out there and explain to them how to hook their stereo up to cable. We give out cable adaptors to make it easy, but I would bet that despite people's good intentions and their general interest to do the work and hook us up and then tune us in, you know, we put the effort out there but a lot of those cable adapters I'm sure end up on the kitchen table for months.
7562 I mean, it's not just tune us in and go, it is people have to make a real effort and go through several steps to get to us. So, as I say, our presence on the campus, we are able to keep that quite high despite those limitations. It is a lot harder to get over that obstacle in the community. With a signal, that is going to change.
7563 MS ASPINWALL: I think an important note here, too, that people often forget is that students as a community are often members of these ethnic communities, are often members of the gay, lesbian, bisexual transgender community. So when we are talking about that I think it is an important thing to remember, that these people leave campus and go home and live within the communities surrounding the area.
7564 So I think to make the -- there is definitely a distinction to be made between student participation and community participation, but I don't want to forget the idea that serving students is just one thing in that vein.
7565 Also, just a couple of other notes in terms of ways.
7566 We have been working on trying to reach out to the community in terms of letting people -- we have a non-profit outreach co-ordinator whose job it is basically to contact non-profit organizations and ethnocultural organizations and let them know, "Okay, we are here. You can bring your public service announcement to us. Would you like to make an ongoing recorded card about the services you offer? We are having a special day of programming."
7567 It is always a great way for people -- for example, the World AIDS Day program we are doing right now, we are getting in touch with a lot of local HIV and AIDS organizations and letting them know that we are doing programming. They may have never heard of us before, and then they realize "Okay. Well, this is a place where if we have a big issue we can send a fax, we can give you a call to get an interview on your airwaves. This is sort of our radio station too."
7568 And certainly getting that idea out there is a process, but it is very difficult to do that with our present service because people don't -- you don't feel it out in the community because it's not on FM.
7569 MR. CHUNG: One thing that currently speaks, I believe, to what you are trying to get at, is our show is -- we have a show called Bridge to Chinese Music, and this programmer has actually put in a proposal to our programming subcommittee which we will be reviewing in the upcoming week, and his idea is to create a Chinese resource, both library as far as information and music goes, and then he wants to, I believe, create brochures in Chinese written language so that he can reach out more to the artists, the community members within the Chinese community within our locality.
7570 I think that really speaks towards not only our effort, but our volunteer's efforts towards diversifying both our programming and our volunteer base at CJSF radio.
7571 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you.
7572 Let me turn to some specific questions about your application.
7573 The first, in your application you indicated that the broadcast week will average 112 hours. The Commission policy is that it will generally expect campus stations to broadcast full time, that is a minimum of 126 hours. There is room for some flexibility, so what special circumstances exists in the case for CJSF-FM?
7574 MR. THYVOLD: I think that figure came out of some of the current access difficulties we have on the campus. It is a combination of getting to the campus as a programmer if you don't live on campus, and again it is the limitation of our signal.
7575 One of the big rewards for -- and I will get onto the next step, I am just explaining where it starts from. But one of the big rewards for programmers is, of course, the knowledge that people are out there listening.
7576 So under our current circumstances as a cable broadcaster, it is harder for people to sort of really feel the reward, that there is enough -- really know that people are listening. We are not doing BBM surveys or anything that say "Oh, X number of people are listening at this time."
7577 So it is difficult for people to sometimes feel that getting out of bed at 4:00 in the morning to do an early show when they could just as well do a show in the afternoon is worth their while.
7578 It is our intent, you know, as quickly as we are able to actually expand -- well, ultimately to 24 hours a day. I wouldn't want to say exactly how long that will take, but I have no doubt that we could expand to 20 or 21 hours a day within a fairly short period of time. I think once we are on the FM dial, then -- and I know this from experience. I spent several years as manager and program director at CFUV Victoria at the University of Victoria, and once people know that the listeners are out there, you know, it is really not even that hard to get programmers to do a 3:00 a.m. to 6:00 a.m. slot.
7579 It is not my idea of the best time to do a show, but you would be surprised how many people are that eager to get on the radio when they know people are listening. The converse is true when they are not so certain.
7580 So I guess what I'm saying is that it is our intent to expand our hours of programming as rapidly as we are able. I think the figure that was put in there was a sort of conservative figure to reflect our present difficulties, but I think we would have no problem expanding that very quickly.
7581 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: So currently on the carrier, current station, how many hours are you carrying now?
7582 MR. THYVOLD: Sixteen hours a day.
7583 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: And you explained the circumstances for that. You say the same circumstances will be there for CJSF-FM, the new proposed station, but you would expand that.
7584 MR. THYVOLD: Well, I think it will actually -- I think probably it will -- you know, even as we approach FM I think the sense of people knowing that something big is coming up that we will even be able to start expanding before then.
7585 When that application was put together, it was worked on based on the experience people had within the station. Personally I wasn't at the station at the time those figures were put together, but I think they were worried about trying to make commitments based on their experience at CJSF that they thought might be difficult to meet, whereas I think we all -- you know, just seeing the excitement that is coming up with this hearing and stuff -- feel all quite confident that we can be a lot more ambitious than we thought we could.
7586 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thanks.
7587 I have a question now about music programming -- I'm sorry?
7588 MR. BLAKE: I just wanted to add one quick little point there.
7589 If you live in the area you will know that the transit system is extending the skytrain to almost the foot of Burnaby Mountain. Once that is in place it will make SFU even more accessible than UBC, and that will also increase accessibility to the station as well for programmers.
7590 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you.
7591 On the music programming, to clarify Canadian content in Category 3, would Simon Fraser Community Radio Society accept a condition of licence that requires a minimum of 12 per cent of the Category 3 music during the broadcast week be Canadian?
7592 MR. CHUNG: That's the new policy?
7593 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: That is correct.
7594 MR. CHUNG: Yes.
7595 Currently, actually, our Canadian content percentages for Category 3 go above and beyond 12 per cent, and with our goal to increase more ethnic programming -- actually I think is a separate category all together.
7596 But yes, we are currently at that level and we are going to make sure that we are above that level and staying there.
7597 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: So you wouldn't have a problem the COL?
7598 MR. CHUNG: No.
7599 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you.
7600 Another clarification -- I wasn't sure if you cleared it up in the presentation this morning or not -- concerns the percentage of student programming on-air.
7601 The new policy states that licensees must indicate the role their stations will play in training students and other volunteers, as well as the approximate percentage of total programming that will be produced by students to fulfil requirements of courses they are taking.
7602 Your description of training is very complete, it was very complete this morning, but what percentage of total programming is produced by students?
7603 MR. THYVOLD: By students in --
7604 MS ASPINWALL: For their courses or just --
7605 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Yes. As you know, the policy in paragraph 63 speaks to the percentage of total programming that will be produced by students to fulfil requirements of courses they are taking.
7606 MS ASPINWALL: So, for example, they are taking Communications 241 and part of their course is to do a program at CJSF? Is that -- that is what was meant by that?
7607 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Yes, I would think so.
7608 MS ASPINWALL: As far as I am aware --
7609 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: It is an example but, in effect, what the policy is saying, I think you mentioned this morning 95 per cent of our programming is produced by station volunteers, but I don't think that speaks to the percentage of total programming produced by students.
7610 MS ASPINWALL: Well, a lot of that is produced by students, but as far as I am aware none of that is for courses. I just don't know if -- I'm trying to make the distinguishment.
7611 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Yes. Well, technically that is what the policy requests that you -- says that you should provide as information.
7612 So you don't know what percentage of total programming is done by students or students who are taking courses?
7613 MS ASPINWALL: Who are -- okay, I'm confused.
7614 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Do you want to come back to that point, then?
7615 MS ASPINWALL: I think so.
7616 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: It is a technicality in the campus policy that asks that you indicate what percentage of total programming students are producing, and it also says that the students are fulfilling requirements of courses they are taking. So if you want to get --
7617 MR. THYVOLD: Well, none of our programming comprises part of one of the courses at the university. Well, for starters, that wouldn't necessarily be something even entirely under our control because we don't get to decide things are part of courses, that is the university's choice.
7618 As far as percentages, I would probably estimate that about 75 per cent of our programming is currently provided by students. I would probably guess, based on my own experience at CFUV, that once we are on FM and we are drawing more community volunteers out probably move down to approximately 50 per cent.
7619 It is not something that is stable, though, either. You know, it moves around. I know from years of experience that it even moves around seasonally. You have a lot more -- you know, the balance shifts in the summer season when there are fewer students on campus than during the two terms when there are lots of students.
7620 We are not -- while we are located at the university, we are not directly -- we are not an instructional station. We are not directly affiliated with them in the sense of providing course work for students, and I don't think necessarily that is our purpose as a station.
7621 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: No, it's the flip-flop a little bit. If you could give a sense of how much of the student programming is related to courses that students are taking. It sort of tells us what is driving the training program, what is driving the student programming.
7622 MR. THYVOLD: One thing is that an awfully high percentage of our students, and even the people here on the panel are in fact communications students, so their involvement at CJSF does directly relate to their course of study, not in a formalized sense but in the sense that it complements the education they are getting.
7623 Lisa is a communications major, Anthony was in communications. There are several people in the back of the room here who are out to support us today who are communications majors.
7624 In some cases it does directly relate. We have people on numerous occasions as part of their communications course call me up and say "As part of our course work we have been instructed to produce a press release", and so they go out and they produce a press release for a real organization, sometimes they come and do one for us, or a whole press kit in fact, or they do it for another organization and then they complete their press release and they say "Well, can you do this press release as a public service announcement on the station." So they take their course work and it actually goes out in the real world instead of just staying in their books.
7625 So in a formal sense in ways that we can -- that for a practical purpose are easy to attach a number to, you know, 2 per cent of our programming somehow -- I mean, a lot of it happens on a personal level through students, you know what students are doing. It is not something that is formalized through the station management route, it is -- so it is a lot of different things.
7626 We had one of our major volunteers a couple of years ago based her entire graduate thesis on the radio station. I think her Masters Degree. You know, it is that thick and it is in the library at SFU, and who knows where else, all about CJSF.
7627 So, I mean, the interrelations are many, they are not necessarily formalized in the sense that this, this, this or half of this show is about whatever, but it something that is part of what we are doing. It is part and parcel of being located at the campus that we interact in a lot of different ways.
7628 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you.
7629 Business plan now. Looking at the proposed new transmitter which would provide a quality FM signal to a sizeable portion of the Vancouver market.
7630 Can you estimate how many hours a week Vancouver residents would commit to your station?
7631 MR. THYVOLD: I'm not sure I understand that question.
7632 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Okay. You are reaching a broader audience --
7633 MR. THYVOLD: Yes.
7634 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: -- if you get this new FM signal. Do you know or can you estimate how many hours a week Vancouver residents would commit to your station? Do you have a sense of what share you would have?
7635 MR. THYVOLD: This particular question is always one that is extremely difficult for campus community stations to answer, whether you are trying to guesstimate where you are going to be or whether you are actually on the dial.
7636 I'm trying to draw on my experience here so it is not necessarily directly related to CJSF but I think it would apply.
7637 When I was CFUV we had some marketing, fourth year marketing students do a study that said about something like 17 to 18 per cent of the respondents to their survey -- they did some telephone survey and they did a sort catch people at the corner downtown survey -- tuned into that station at least once a week. Whether that was for, you know, half an hour or an hour or they do it every day, but at least 17 per cent did at least at some point. You know, on average they listened for about two hours per session. Those who listened to the radio station actually listened for about two hours per session.
7638 So I would, you know, I think because Vancouver is bigger, because it has many more local radio stations, because it does have a couple of community stations, you know, our numbers might not be as high in terms of percentages, but I mean in terms of actual numbers because the number of people within our reach of our signal, of the very strongest part of our signal, is two or three times the whole population of Victoria.
7639 You know, our percentages might be lower, but I think our total number of listeners would be higher.
7640 In terms of more firmer numbers, I mean at the end of the day it is really not something we do in campus community radio. We are trying to focus on the programming and we are not getting obsessed about numbers in shares. It's not that it's not important to us, but it is not what drives our programming.
7641 I would also point out that in our particular case we are not proposing to do advertising, so again the numbers aren't quite as -- in that sense are not quite as important to us.
7642 MR. CHAN: At the same time, I just wanted to point out, too -- surprise, surprise --
7643 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Have you been sleeping back there? It's nice to see you back with us.
7644 MR. CHAN: I have just been sipping on water and eating these cheap mints, right, so amusing myself.
--- Laughter / Rires
7645 MR. CHAN: I'm sorry, Hilton people.
7646 Anyway, I just wanted to point out too that because part of the problem right now in the Lower Mainland is outreach. The fastest growing communities are the eastern part of the Lower Mainland, the communities like Surrey, Coquitlam and places like that. This is where our population is growing, but with the weak signals -- well, however, most of the community stations are based like in the UBC and downtown core, which is the western side of the city.
7647 If CJSF was to get an FM licence, we would actually open up the market of community radio to the eastern part of the cities as well. I think what you will see is that we will have like a new base of people to draw upon.
7648 Because if you go by the stats, right, and you look at the current Vancouver market, you are only talking about people who can hear like community radio, maybe like -- I'm just pulling numbers out of my ass here --
--- Laughter / Rires
7649 MR. CHAN: -- but I'm just thinking maybe like 60 per cent of the people of the city. Do you see what I mean? People who live in the western area of the city, those are the only people who can listen to community radio. But because of where we are situated, we will be broadcasting to the eastern part and effectively we will be growing the market for community radio and I think you will see our stats increase because of that.
7650 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: I don't think I will get that answer from too many applicants.
--- Laughter / Rires
7651 MR. CHAN: Yes, yes. It's these mints, I'm sorry.
--- Laughter / Rires
7652 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Seat of the pants, oh, okay. That one I will get.
7653 One of the reasons I was asking was obviously you are in competition for this frequency so we are looking at -- and I will give you a chance, obviously, at the end to sum up why you feel you should have this frequency, but you mentioned advertising and that gets a little bit behind the question as well.
7654 So let's just go to that right now when we will ask about your revenues.
7655 Your application originally didn't contemplate revenues, but since that time changes to the policy have increased your flexibility to do that. Have you not -- why did you not consider the sale of advertising time to generate additional revenues?
7656 MR. THYVOLD: I think it basically boils down to a sort of philosophical approach on the part of the membership of the station. We have fairly -- we have quite solid funding through our student levy, we have a number of other initiatives we are planning to put in play, but -- and this isn't necessarily the case at all campus stations, although the attitude is quite strong within the campus community radio environment, that -- and at CJSF the idea that we are a non-commercial broadcaster is taken very much in the sort of literal sense.
7657 There are many people -- you know, what people feel is often the problem with the commercial sector is that it is so driven by revenues and so driven by numbers that often the programming and the music, or whatever, is secondary, you know, and the programming in music is merely a tool to produce ears for advertisements. I think that is a pretty fair statement. I mean, it is a business, that is what they do.
7658 Our approach -- and this is, I think, common to all campus community stations, is that the programming is key. Now, at CJSF many people feel that if we were to get into advertising you create a situation where we become dependent on that revenue generated and that can start to influence -- people are afraid that that can start influencing the sort of programming decisions we might make, and that is something that a lot of our membership feels.
7659 We are a station and an organization that is driven by its membership, so in the particular question of advertising there is a great deal of discomfort, both about what people think might be the practical outcomes of beginning to carry advertising, the influence it might have on us, and on a more purely philosophical level that, you know, if we don't need it, if we don't need it to do the kind of programming we want to do, then why get into it.
7660 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: On the "if we don't need it", then, if we back up, what you do have in place as your revenue sources is largely dependent on what you call non-government funding, which is essentially the student activity fees. You note they are guaranteed through referendum and cannot be altered.
7661 Can you elaborate on to what extent these student fees are guaranteed?
7662 MR. THYVOLD: Any changes to our fees are dependent on a referendum of all the students. When we want to increase them we would go to -- we would propose a referendum, we have to do a petition, get a sufficient number of signatures which allows us to put a referendum on the ballot at the campus, and then a referendum is held to increase them.
7663 Similarly, to remove them would take a similar effort. So someone would have to really decide they had it in for CJSF and then convince a majority of the students that they should remove this funding. Obviously that wouldn't happen without us mounting an exceptionally strong campaign to counter that argument.
7664 We do a lot on the campus, not only through our programming but, as was mentioned earlier, we provide music for a number of events through other student organizations, whether it's the PER Group or the Out-On-Campus Group or the Women's Centre or whatever, the Vegetarian Lunch. There is a vegetarian lunch every Wednesday, so if you are up on campus on a Wednesday at noon you can get a free vegetarian lunch.
7665 But my point is that we do -- we have established a presence on the campus. We make a point of being involved in campus activities, supporting a lot of the other campus groups, so we have a lot of support on campus.
7666 The last time we ran a referendum we were around 75 per cent support, which is very, very strong support. It only takes 50-plus-1 to pass the referendums.
7667 I mean, nothing is guaranteed, but I think it would be an extraordinary hard thing for someone to try to run to take our fees away.
7668 MR. CHAN: And also, the student levy is actually fully refundable.
7669 Maybe you guys can elaborate on this a little bit more, but the student levy to CJSF is fully refundable. I don't have -- I think some other people will have the exact numbers, but there hasn't been too many students who have actually come for a refund. I think that is very indicative of the student support here at CJSF.
7670 Do you guys have numbers on that? Like two people came for a refund last semester? I don't know.
7671 MR. THYVOLD: Ten.
7672 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: But you understand that we have to have a good sense of your estimation that future referenda would not change this, this bulk of your financing.
7673 MR. THYVOLD: Yes. Well, in my knowledge, and I have been working in campus community radio for a long time and working at the national level for a number of years so I do know what is going on at other stations, I have never heard of a case where through referendum a station has had its fees withdrawn.
7674 The problems that campus community stations have had with funding, student-generated funding, has always been in the case where that funding has been in the control and at the discretion of student councils. Where it has been funded through referendum it has always been solid and I have never heard of a case where it has been taken away.
7675 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: On your list of revenue sources you have government funding and other. Could you expand a little bit on what government funding you mean and what you are pursuing and what the other might be?
7676 MR. THYVOLD: A lot of our government funding comes through the summer career placement program. That is a big chunk. Although we still refer to it as "challenge program". Everywhere I go everybody still calls it the "challenge program". It hasn't been called that officially for about 10 years, but maybe they should go back. But that is one source of funding.
7677 We get another source of funding through work study wages for a number of people who can work part time as students through the -- at the station. Those are probably the main sources of government funding. That pretty much adds up to about, I think it is $5,000-some-off that we list under that total. CJSF has been pretty successful on a consistent basis getting that kind of government funding.
7678 One of the things is that a lot of that government funding, if your follow-up question is to be what happens if we don't get it, is that it is typically project-oriented. So we get a challenge grant for a student, or two students as in the past summer, to work on various projects, various projects at the station. If we didn't get that funding -- I mean, all the funding that comes from that goes to pay the wages of those students, so it is money-in, money-out. It's not like it is intended to subsidize other operations.
7679 So if, for example, we didn't get that funding, it would be -- we would have to pursue those projects through volunteer efforts, but it wouldn't put us in a difficult financial position.
7680 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: And all of that in context of our question about another source, which is potentially advertising revenues and, we understand your comment now on that choice, but the campus policy does offer that flexibility --
7681 MR. THYVOLD: Yes.
7682 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: -- down the road, but that is the role of your board I assume.
7683 MR. THYVOLD: Yes. And that's why we make reference to it in our application. We are not looking to have that restricted in any way, because that is a decision that may change over time, so we would leave it at that.
7684 The decision right now is an internal decision among the membership to take that course, and times change, membership changes and maybe a different decision will come in the future, but that is not where we are going right now.
7685 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you.
7686 Not surprisingly I have some technical questions.
7687 As you know, there is another application for the frequency 90.9 by Gary Farmer, Aboriginal Voices Radio. You have not proposed any alternate frequencies that might be suitable for either your or the other application. Have you or engineering consultants conducted studies to find alternate frequencies that could possibly be used in Vancouver, either for your application or for the Aboriginal Voices Radio and, if so, what are your findings?
7688 MS FETTERLY: Well, to answer that question I have to back up just a little bit because, as you may know, this is an alternate frequency to an invitation that we had before the Commission at the last visit we had, and at that time we were requested to find an alternate frequency to the application that we had put before the Commission.
7689 So to answer your question, this would be the alternate.
7690 Now, coming here today I have seen that -- or in listening to the proceedings I see that there are other frequencies available, you know looking at the other applicants. If one of those frequencies became available we would certainly be interested in taking one of those frequencies, but further to that I would say no.
7691 Presently the work that we did was between the first application we put in and working towards putting this application together and looking at what else is out there that is actually before you with this particular hearing.
7692 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: So you anticipated my next question, then.
7693 If for any reason 90.9 was not available to you, would you be able, ready and willing to use another frequency for your proposed FM station?
7694 MS FETTERLY: If it is a satisfactory frequency, absolutely.
7695 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Would you use an AM frequency?
7696 MS FETTERLY: Now, I would love to say yes, but the costs of going AM would be absolutely prohibitive for the Society.
7697 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: By way of a sum up, as well as answering this question, can you elaborate why, in your opinion, 90.9 be granted to you rather than to Aboriginal Voices Radio or to any other applicant at the hearing?
7698 This is giving you a chance as well to sum up why you feel that we should grant you the licence.
7699 MR. THYVOLD: I think probably a number of us want to speak to this particular question because it is why we are here today.
7700 I think one of the reasons we deserve this frequency is because what we are proposing for this frequency is to serve this community specifically with programming generated within this community, generated by people of this community. You know, we are ready to go with all this.
7701 We are doing this right now. We are not saying we are going to create something, although obviously, as we have said, there are various areas we are going to expand into.
7702 We are doing this right now and in fact we have been doing it for a number of years. We are not inexperienced at this, we are not just starting out at the game of running a radio station, we have been doing it a long time, both at our own station here and in terms of a number of people involved who have extensive experience at other stations.
7703 But CJSF as an organization has been doing this for a long time. We have a strong slated programming that is already going on as we speak. So there is that.
7704 I think there are -- Vancouver is very large city, it is one of the most diverse in Canada. Certainly there are two other community broadcasters, but there is so much stuff, so many communities to be served, so much programming that is needed to serve a lot of different communities that there really is a real need for our station.
7705 Do you want to add?
7706 MR. CHAN: Ditto. No, no.
--- Laughter / Rires
7707 MR. CHAN: I just want to reiterate my point about the eastern parts of the Lower Mainland.
7708 You go to the eastern parts of Vancouver, this is the -- I mean greater Vancouver regional district, it is the most fastest growing area in Canada and I think a lot of these people, they just won't have access to community radio right now. I think CJSF and our location, I think we can reach out to these people in all these different communities and give these people a chance to particular in community radio that they just never had before. I think it is a great opportunity.
7709 Before the Internet takes over everything, you know, we have to get these people in now.
7710 That's all I have to say.
--- Pause / Pause
7711 MS FETTERLY: I can see that there is some pressure on me to add something to this.
7712 My involvement with CJSF is for many, many years and there is a rather large and loyal population that has followed CJSF to this very day at this hearing. While they could not be here at eight o'clock in the morning I can only speak for them.
7713 Looking at what CJSF has to offer is possibly the biggest promise for the future of the radio station and looking at the campus community service that could be provided to the areas that Matt was just talking about. There is an entire region of the Lower Mainland that is out there that has yet to have any access, real access to be served by a community radio station. That has been the dream, that has been the idea behind CJSF being able to go FM for this very long period of time.
7714 I would like to believe, and I feel very strong, that the day has come that this would be the time to do so, that with the radio market the way that it is right now and with the absolute desire behind all these people who have been geared up for years to be able to do this, I would have to say that this would be possibly one of the best things that could happen to Vancouver at this time.
7715 That is what I have to say in closing.
7716 MR. CHUNG: May I add a few things?
7717 I am drawing a little bit upon my university education. There is so much emphasis put on higher education, not only in Canada but across the world, and I think what people fail to realize is that as broadcasters we can take a position of being educators.
7718 People don't necessarily have the financial means to attend university and post-secondary education and having us as broadcasters on the FM dial will not only make the different issues we have talked about throughout our education accessible to them, but they will make new perspectives, new ideas and new outlooks on both society, life, culture and everything available to everyone.
7719 So the benefit isn't just to the volunteers of CJSF radio, it goes beyond that into the rest of society.
7720 And that is what I would like to say.
7721 MR. CONDON: If I could, just quickly.
7722 I grew up in southern Ontario across the lake from Toronto and I first discovered campus community radio about 13-14 years ago by accidentally drifting down the dial basically and finding CKLN out of Ryerson in Toronto. It was through that, frankly, that I was offered a diversity that I wasn't -- I didn't know Toronto existed in this way, in so many different ways. This was a major city 22 miles across a lake and I only knew it one way, the way I had been getting basically on very homogenized and increasing homogenized FM radio and TV news.
7723 I would hate the thought of these growing communities, a very large portion of the greater Vancouver area, because of the sheer sprawl of the city and the topography, to be cut off from getting to know what is going on next door.
7724 We are in an era where people are increasing dwelling, dwelling, dwelling within their homes with their creature comforts. I would hate to think that they do not know what is going on down the block and may not want to get involved. So I think that is something we can definitely do here.
7725 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Did you have something to add to that?
7726 MS ASPINWALL: Yes. I wanted to add, I have had experience at three other campus community stations that are on the FM and just the sort of -- the passion and the programming that exists and the way that it can speak to so many different communities, and when you turn the station on and you are hearing voices and issues that are speaking to your real-life experience that you don't hear anywhere else on the FM dial, there is something very essential about that.
7727 What is also very exciting about campus community radio is when you get everyone together within that organization and you can see, really, the forms of community coming together with people who work on their own shows, on their programming, but everyone comes together to participate in the station, participate democratically in this organization, and really have a sense of community of the things that are possible when these kinds of people get together and start talking about things in their lives and start addressing issues that are not addressed in the mainstream and having voices and people that are just very real and that are speaking to issues that are really essential.
7728 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you. Thank you all.
7729 Thank you, Madam Chair.
7730 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you very much.
7731 Commissioner Cardozo.
7732 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I have a couple of questions.
7733 I just want to follow up on a couple of issues that Joan Pennefather talked to you about, one of them being cultural diversity.
7734 One of the reasons we are interested in this issue specifically with regards to campus radio is because campus is an area that is very culturally and racially diverse, and SFU is no exception, and perhaps one of the more diverse campuses around and likely to be that way forever.
7735 So I just wanted to get a bit more specifics from you.
7736 When we look to campus radio to reflect diversity, there are sort of three things I think you can talk about.
7737 One is, programming for particular groups, whether it is in a third language or not, whether it is in English or in a third language it is, for some reason, programming that that group is particularly interested in.
7738 The second would be programming for the wider student community, or the campus community around issues of particular interest to diversity, whether it is immigration, racism, whatever other issues there are of concern to people.
7739 Third is inclusion of people, volunteers and employment.
7740 I think on the third one you certainly have some diversity reflected here, and my guess is that you couldn't pick eight students randomly out of your campus and not have a fair amount of diversity in terms of ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, income group and, might I say, hair colour too.
--- Laughter / Rires
7741 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So let me just ask you about the first couple, then, in terms of programming targeted or that is offered for particular groups.
7742 Are there student clubs on campus, say the Iranian Students Group or any other kind of ethnic-based student or language-based student group who would be interested in -- or who are interested and have done programming with you, or do you have plans for that in the future?
7743 MS ASPINWALL: Yes, there are several clubs on campus as to that nature.
7744 Presently the Simon Fraser Public Interest Research Group has a collective show, but in terms of sort of cultural organizations the Association -- Students of African Descent has previously had a show. They presently don't have a show on the air.
7745 But we do have a student who is involved in the Arabian community on campus who is playing music and talking about news affecting that community. And it is very often that it is one of the ways in which we reach out.
7746 In terms of the First Nations community on campus, we have been working with someone to start up a show. Unfortunately it got quite busy this semester and hasn't been able to start it up, but that is definitely in our plans. We have been talking to both the First Nations Student Office and the First Nations Student Association about starting up programming. Is that sort of --
7747 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Yes, okay. Yes.
7748 MS ASPINWALL: But that is sort of a base.
7749 And like I was saying before, there are student clubs, but they are also connected with organizations within the community bringing issues on campus, but also bringing that connection in with living their lives in the larger community and all those issue being interconnected as speaking to students on campus but also to the larger community is combining those things.
7750 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Do you have issue-based groups, whether it is an anti-racism group, a gay and lesbian group, an environment group, for example, who will look to the radio station as a place where they can have their issues addressed?
7751 MS ASPINWALL: Most certainly. Like, for example, the Simon Fraser Public Interest Research Group is an organization, a student-run and community organization on campus, that addresses a variety of environmental and social justice issues. They have a collective show on-air at the moment.
7752 We have had -- Women's Centre on campus have a show, their specific show, and we are also working with Out-On-Campus, which is the queer collective on campus. We actually have someone in training now and we have plans to have a show based out of that.
7753 I think that is sort of what you were asking.
7754 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Yes.
7755 MR. THYVOLD: I just want to make a very quick point, because Emily is sort of talking about shows we have in development and shows we have now and shows we have had in the past.
7756 One of the difficulties of our high reliance right now on student volunteers, which we have explained why that is previously, is that their schedules change, you know, semester to semester. I know this from my experience at other stations, it is really difficult to generate the kind of programming stability with just students -- this is in reference to your question -- that we would get with community volunteers.
7757 So I wouldn't want you to form the impression that because things come and go it is because, you know, for any other reason than student's schedules change and they can do a show this year and they can't do it next year, or vice versa.
7758 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay. Well, it just takes me back to the point you made earlier when you were talking about the station being a facilitator for various groups or viewpoints, et cetera.
7759 Are you a laid-back facilitator or an outreaching facilitator? Because I think there is a difference. You can either be there and people show up or not, or you can go out there and --
7760 MS ASPINWALL: Oh --
7761 MR. CHUNG: I would like to speak on this.
7762 One thing I think people have to understand about the SFU environment right now is the location and where it is at. Right now -- not only CJSF but the different student organizations which you have mentioned and which people have mentioned.
7763 They have a lot of difficulty themselves getting volunteers in and they are actively doing it. We are actively doing it too. We are approaching these organizations and saying "Come on, come in and get involved" and often their response is, you know, students up here are apathetic because there is no real sense of community, unfortunately, because -- I don't know what it is about it, but --
7764 MR. CHAN: It's the Arthur Erikson building, it just sucks.
7765 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I'm sorry, I didn't hear the first part of that. What was it that sucked?
7766 MR. CHAN: Our university was designed by Arthur Erikson in a very post-modern style which is very conducive to depression.
7767 MR. THYVOLD: Anyway, to answer your question, we are out there actively, you know, asking these groups to come in and when they do come in we do work closely with them to help them through their training, but also on an ongoing basis with resources and program development.
7768 MS ASPINWALL: I think an important example of this is just this past week Out-On-Campus was having a queer day on campus, coming out ceremonies and stuff like that, and we provided outdoor broadcasting for them for this and also they came into the station and were making prerecorded announcements about their event. So it is sort of this mutual support.
7769 We have managed to go out to there and attend the meetings and regularly in semesters and say "This the service we offer. We are looking for people to get involved in community radio. This is what it is." Because I think unless you go out there, as you are saying, and really tell people and through your actions such as supporting outdoor broadcasting, supporting people's announcements, talking about their issues on the station, then you start to show them what it is about.
7770 And through all those different actions people start to see "Oh, okay, like that's what it's for, it is for me to speak to the issues in my community, it is for me to begin this kind of dialogue that will sort of create a healthier community and help communications, talk about issues that aren't talked about anywhere else."
7771 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Forgive me for saying this, but after hearing your last few answers it sounds to me like you are fighting a losing battle. You are not going to have volunteers, so why do you want a frequency?
7772 MS ASPINWALL: I'm sorry?
7773 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Is it just that you have a certain base of people and that is a good enough base to run a station and it is expanding that is the hard part?
7774 MS ASPINWALL: Well, I think you are referring in terms of -- I mean, I think we have addressed this, as far as I understand your comment, in terms of being presently limited in terms of our range, of cable, on the Internet, in residence, and because of that --
7775 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Oh, so you are saying with a frequency you will be overcoming some of this lack of interest?
7776 MS ASPINWALL: Oh, yes, very much so I think.
7777 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay.
7778 MS ASPINWALL: I think that you can just -- I mean, I think we have sort of discussed this point, but just expanding and going FM in terms of people being "Oh, I do programming and all these people hear me, they are calling in, making that connection."
7779 We are saying we have the base there and we are building on that base and we are working on those plans to build and we have already started up that work. But with the FM, that is what we need to really speak to these issues and have people be able to hear other people speaking to these issues.
7780 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay.
7781 One other question with regard to CFRO: To what extent do they satisfy the needs that you are going to fulfil? Or, put differently, do you have a lot more to offer beyond what they are offering in terms of community radio, non-profit radio?
7782 MR. THYVOLD: Yes, I think we do. I mean, as we have made the point a couple of times, there are a lot of needs out there in the community and one station, like CFRO, can't accommodate everybody.
7783 When you have an established station like CFRO, it has a fairly stabilized programming schedule. If someone comes to them and says "We have this community or we have this interest and we would like to see it fulfilled", it is not just the time waiting. Great, you know, bang, bang you're on the air and your community is being served. It is not like that at all. Their schedule is full up. The same with CITR.
7784 So when new people, new communities are coming to them saying "We would like to see our community served. We would like to get a show on-the-air", those stations are going to give them all the encouragement they can, but they are also going to be saying to them "We don't have time in our schedule right now. We would love to have you on-the-air, but we have to see what and when an opportunity can be created for you."
7785 So the need is unquestionable that there are a lot of communities that want to do stuff that currently can't, or have to wait so long, and I know that often what happens when a group has to wait a long time to get a program is that the energy and drive that caused to them to form to generate the idea to go to the station and say we want to do this dissipates. If you have to wait six months, a year, or longer, your group falls apart and by the time something comes along the energy within that collective is not there any more.
7786 MS ASPINWALL: I think just to add onto that, I think idea that -- you know, for example, the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community already is a lot of communities within one community, is vast within the issues and the problems and the frustrations that exist in that community, and to say "Well, you have a half hour queer show on CFRO", like that should be enough kind of thing. Like there is so much need there, even within communities that are already served, for example, on CFRO.
7787 But I just don't want to get into the idea that, well, there is one queer show in Vancouver so that serves the queer community.
7788 Also, just to reiterate the idea of serving the issues and communities in specific around Burnaby Mountain, which would differ us from programming, of course Co-Op Radio based out of downtown Vancouver would be -- you know, you don't hear issues about the Burnaby Gypsy Moth spring up on Co-Op Radio or different things happening, you know, in Ioco, all these kinds of things. It's not present there and there is, like Trevor was saying, vast amounts of expanding communities facing their own particular issues in those communities that have no voice. We are trying to fill that and I think we can do it very well.
7789 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thank you very much.
7790 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Commissioner Cardozo.
7791 Thank you very much.
7792 Have a good day, Trevor.
7793 MR. THYVOLD: Thanks very much for giving us the opportunity to come today.
7794 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you.
7795 Nice to see, I think we have some students here from the communications class, don't we?
7796 Communications faculty. Welcome.
--- Off microphone / Sans microphone
7797 THE CHAIRPERSON: I'm sorry?
--- Off microphone / Sans microphone
7798 THE CHAIRPERSON: Actually, no, I'm sorry, it isn't actually. We finished the proceeding with respect to this application.
7799 So I think what we will do is now take our morning break and be back at 11 o'clock.
7800 MS VOGEL: Thank you.
7801 Our next presenter is going to be Central Island Broadcasting, so perhaps they would like to move up during the break.
--- Upon recessing at 1042 / Suspension à 1042
--- Upon resuming at 1103 / Reprise à 1103
7802 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good morning.
7803 Madam Secretary.
7804 MS VOGEL: Thank you, Madam Chair.
7805 Our next item is the application by Central Island Broadcasting Ltd. for a broadcasting licence to carry on an English-language FM radio programming undertaking at Nanaimo.
7806 The new station would operate on frequency 106.9 megahertz with an effective radiated power of 1,600 watts, upon surrender of the current licence issued to CKEG Nanaimo.
7807 The applicant is proposing a music format consisting of great oldies and great '80s music.
7808 The applicant is also requesting permission to broadcast simultaneously on the AM and FM bands for a period of three months before surrendering the current licence issued to CKEG.
7809 Please go ahead whenever you are ready.
APPLICATION / APPLICATION
7810 MR. ADSHEAD: Thank you, Madam Secretary.
7811 Madam Chair, Members of the Commission, and Commission staff, my name is Bob Adshead. I am Vice-President and General Manager of Central Island Broadcasting Ltd. of Nanaimo.
7812 With me today, to my right, is Cathy Johns, Administrative Director for our company. On her immediate right is Brad Edwards, our Operations Manager for Central Island Broadcasting Ltd. On my immediate left is Chris Weafer, our legal counsel, and beside Chris is Doug Allen of D.E.M. Allen and Associates, our technical consultant.
7813 We sincerely appreciate the opportunity to appear before you today. As you know, we are here for one reason, to provide the Commission with what we believe is a positive proactive approach to move forward and allow CKEG-AM, Nanaimo's heritage radio station, to change to the FM band at 106.9 megahertz. The primary necessity is a much-needed technical upgrade to FM quality and signal strength, something that we can't achieve with the AM station, and to ensure the financial future of this station.
7814 Central Island Broadcasting is a small-market company serving the central east coast of Vancouver Island. Nanaimo is our home, our home town. It is located, as the crow flies, about 35 miles across Georgia Strait from Vancouver. It is not that far, yet, as we experience, it is very near.
7815 Nanaimo has a population of approximately 80,000. Our proposal is for service to Nanaimo, period. We have no interest in Vancouver. As detailed in our technical brief, the contours of our proposed FM station, the 0.5 millivolt signal, reaches only to an imaginary point mid-way across Georgia Strait.
7816 A little history, at least what I am familiar with. Nanaimo first received AM radio service in the late 1940s. The station was a vision of a group of individuals from a Vancouver newspaper. There was a low power transmitter in south Nanaimo, the site where the CKEG-AM transmitter is located today. Coverage at that time was limited, due to low power of the transmitter. The population of Nanaimo was, at that time, in a area surrounding downtown.
7817 Over the years we have made investments to improve the AM station. However, we have reached the point where the only practical strategy for improvement is through a technical upgrade to FM.
7818 As our proposal is to move CKEG-AM to the FM band, it is important to realize and understand that the service area of the AM station has been severely compromised, especially in the past 10 years. The deterioration of the service is a result of a number of factors. These include:
7819 The combination of the frequency of operation, 1570 kilohertz being at the high end of the AM spectrum, and the ground conductivity of the terrain surrounding Nanaimo, which acts as though it was solid Precambrian rock, severely limits the distance the signal travels. Similar challenges of this nature have occurred at other AM stations on Vancouver Island.
7820 Over the last few years the significant growth of the urban area of Nanaimo, and a resulting increase in man-made electrical noise, has severely affected the levels of interference on the AM band, consequently reducing the level of service to the CKEG market area. This "noise" or "interference" on 1570 AM occurs in a variety of areas from the central or downtown to the primary growth region at the north end of Nanaimo or along the waterfront northwest of downtown. This will only get worse and may only be overcome by the use of FM which is not affected by electrical noise.
7821 This challenge has resulted in reduced tuning. Poor signal strength is a factor. People prefer a strong, interference-free signal, or they tune away to other stations.
7822 I would like to quote from a couple of letters from business owners who have filed interventions in support of our application. In actual fact, I kind of bypassed the first one as part of a letter because the other two impact as being very local.
"Island Farms has partnered with SKWV-FM (The WAVE)."
7823 Our Nanaimo station:
"We receive excellent coverage and the benefit of a highly professional (Nanaimo) FM station. We do not partner with a Community Events Cruiser on CKEG 1570 AM as information suggests a more limited coverage area."
7824 Alex Marriott is a Sales Representative with Island Farms Dairies.
7825 The next quote is from a car dealer:
"I am a strong believer in radio advertising and have always been a regular advertiser on CKWV, the local FM station. Although utilizing the AM station on occasion up until six months ago, it's my opinion this station can no longer provide necessary results, the listener base or coverage area for the investment. Thus, my reason for discontinuing any investment with CKEG AM."
7826 That Barry Robson who is the President and General Manager of Nanaimo Honda Cars.
7827 We need the "flip" in order to support our local radio service in Nanaimo. There is a market demand for service by advertisers and listeners.
7828 Nanaimo is in a very unique geographical location. Benefits include natural beauty of terrain, lifestyle, heritage and the distinct Vancouver Island culture.
7829 Just as there are many benefits, we have challenges.
7830 From a broadcasting perspective, we understand and appreciate people deserve and desire choice. Besides local stations, listeners in Nanaimo have over 20 Vancouver and area stations to choose form. These are off-air AM and FM station signals, not cable or any other source. There are an additional 27 signals received in Nanaimo from the State of Washington or other Vancouver Island communities. The FM stations are all well programmed, highly intense and niched to serve specific market demographics.
7831 We are not here to whine or complain about our challenges. We have remained positive and proactive and have worked creatively to find our own solutions so that we might remain competitive. In fairness, and under the circumstances, to compete at the best level possible we desperately need to be on the same playing field, the FM playing field.
7832 I would like to ask Cathy to provide some details of the recent financial picture of CKEG as an AM station.
7834 MS JOHNS: I joined Central Island Broadcasting six years ago. At the time, the two independent Nanaimo broadcast companies had just amalgamated so Nanaimo and area would be better served with broadcasting services. This is an example of a positive proactive approach by two local small market broadcasters.
7835 Prior to amalgamation, each company was licensed with an AM station. The new company, Central Island Broadcasting, moved forward to establish the first FM station for Nanaimo on surrender of one of the AM licences. The new FM station signed-on January 2, 1995. CKEG remained as the AM station in Nanaimo.
7836 In 1995, revenues for the AM station remained virtually the same as 1994. However, in the 1996 fiscal year, the year after the new FM station reached the air, the first real sign of financial challenges for the AM station began to unfold. Revenues for CKEG-AM declined approximately 26 per cent in the 1996 fiscal year.
7837 Central Island Broadcasting made several changes to prop up the AM station, including marketing and sales strategies in co-operation with the sister station CKWV-FM, The WAVE.
7838 This resulted in marginal sales improvements for the AM station through 1997 and 1998.
7839 Revenues declined slightly in 1999. This past fiscal year, sales declined substantially by 16 per cent.
7840 Fiscal year 2000 was the lowest sales level for this station since 1983. This financial challenge has now compounded a difficult technical situation and created even more urgency for the transition of this station to FM.
7841 Although motivated by technical concerns of CKEG as an AM station, and challenges to reach and serve the marketplace, we now have serious concerns about the financial future of CKEG as an AM station.
7842 Again, we would rather emphasize the technical challenges. We need to be able to reach the Nanaimo market audience at the same high quality level as the many out-of-market FM signals that penetrate Nanaimo. That is why planning and preparation have been based on a proactive approach with significant and somewhat unique benefits and contributions to the Canadian broadcasting system.
7843 MR. ADSHEAD: So the primary reasons for this application which is before you today are the following:
7844 Firstly, the technical quality case.
7845 Secondly, the possibility that the current transmitter site for CKEG may not be available in about two years. This would result in a relocation capital expenditure that, quite frankly, doesn't make sense. We have determined that to remain competitive the only logical opportunity is to move the AM station to the FM band at 106.9 FM.
7846 As the Commission is aware, other broadcasters on Vancouver Island have experienced similar challenges with their AM stations. In the case of Victoria and Duncan broadcasters, each has followed procedure, applied for and received approval for changing their AM stations to FM.
7847 When Central Island Broadcasting was preparing this application in early 1999, we were not aware that Radio Malaspina Society was in the process of completing an application for a new campus community FM station to Nanaimo.
7848 The Radio Malaspina Society application moved through process and received a hearing date for late November 1999. In the fall of 1999 members of our company met with Radio Malaspina to discuss ways to work together so that we both might achieve and move forward with their applications.
7849 The primary challenge, each applicant's technical proposals conflicted with each other. At the recommendation of Commission staff, the applicants were encouraged to work together to find solutions to the technical challenges and return with options.
7850 As finances were tight for Radio Malaspina, Central Island Broadcasting agreed to cover additional costs that Radio Malaspina might incur dealing with new technical proposals. With this funding Radio Malaspina technical advisors identified a drop-in frequency at 101.7, a third adjacent channel to Central Island Broadcasting's existing station CKWV at 102.3 FM. To accommodate this drop-in frequency for Radio Malaspina it was necessary to co-locate with CKWV-FM to avoid interference. However, this also created new costs for Radio Malaspina over and above their original proposals.
7851 Central Island Broadcasting agreed to provide Radio Malaspina with a variety of services and transmitter site access to accommodate their new proposals. The Commission has been made aware of this unique commitment through updated filings to our application.
7852 Certainly, successful local programming is a critical issue for Nanaimo. I would like to call on Brad Edwards to provide a little background into programming of the new FM.
7854 MR. EDWARDS: The target audience for the new FM station is the 25 to 49 pop/rock demographic. We will achieve this with great oldies, great '80s, a format has been evolving our AM station to for over a year.
7855 The format includes a great mix of favourites from the late '60s, '70s and 1980s. We firmly believe in supporting the heritage of Canadian talent that has played a role in development of the Canadian music industry we have today. Artists like The Band, Glass Tiger, Long John Baldry, and even Brian Adams. Also, artists like Honeymoon Suite, April Wine, Trooper, Chilliwack, Jim Byrnes, Doug and The Slugs and Powder Blues. Of those mentioned, some have recently been on tour through our area. They continue to draw excellent audiences. This is a testament to the credibility of what we do, plus who and what we support as a community station.
7856 As a company, we feel strongly and are so committed that, regardless of recent amendments to Canadian content regulations, we have opted not to take advantage of the 30 per cent mandate for an oldies-based format or music prior to 1980, but will continue to program 35 per cent Canadian in our daily format. There are dozens of choices for music in our market, predominantly on the FM dial. Only Central Island can deliver this from a local perspective for Nanaimo.
7857 Central Island Broadcasting has a self-designed mandate to provide 50 per cent local news coverage. This includes health and lifestyle issues of interest to the community. As heritage community broadcasters, we appreciate and understand there are issues, concerns and traditions only a local broadcaster could recognize. None of these issues are served by non-local stations or signals received in Nanaimo from Vancouver or other distant communities.
7858 We have also succeeded in dealing with our community uniqueness with a series of special programs and features as shown in our application. We are one of very few remaining broadcasters that specializes in play-by-play hockey at a junior level. This is grassroots community broadcasting only Central Island Broadcasting can deliver for Nanaimo.
7859 MR. ADSHEAD: From a business perspective, the flip of CKEG from AM to FM is essential to maintaining our ability to provide quality service to Nanaimo.
7860 Our revenue projections are based on 20 years experience in the marketplace. Although our financial projections were filed prior to the issuance of a new TV licence to CHUM for service Vancouver Island, quite obviously this new service will impact our operations. This now makes the need for a flip of our AM to FM even more important than when we originally filed our application.
7861 A unique aspect of our application is that we are making a direct contribution to the licensing of a new community campus service for Nanaimo, that being a licence for Radio Malaspina Society. We have worked effectively and co-operatively with radio Malaspina and we are very excited about the results.
7862 As discussed, as the heritage station serving Nanaimo for over 50 years, we face nearly 50 out-of-market signals easily received off-air in the community. These signals, of which 29 are FM, provide various levels of competition for audience for our local stations. Yet Central Island is the only local radio news voice serving Nanaimo. Approval of this application will allow us to preserve the existing heritage news voice in our community.
7863 There are no licensed broadcasters serving Nanaimo that will be negatively impacted by approval of this application to flip our AM service to FM. As the Commission is aware, Central Island is the sole broadcast company serving Nanaimo from Nanaimo. Our existing FM service will not be impacted in a negative way by the flip and, in fact, this flip will improve the efficiency of that operation by the ability to co-locate as well this new FM at our existing FM transmitter site. This also potentially avoids an AM transmitter site challenge that we may have for Central Island Broadcasting.
7864 The flip of our existing AM station will allow Central Island to more effectively compete for audience in the Nanaimo market against the myriad of out-of-market signals that provide no local service.
7865 We would also confirm that the reach of our proposed new FM station will not extend our signal beyond that provided by our existing AM signal service area.
7866 As indicated earlier in this application, if approved, it will result in a unique contribution to local broadcasting in Nanaimo and, we believe, the Canadian broadcasting system through our commitment to the Radio Malaspina Society. It is not common for a local private broadcaster to welcome a new signal to a market. However, we believe the initiative of Radio Malaspina is good for Nanaimo and, therefore, as a local Nanaimo broadcaster and good corporate citizen, we are pleased to support them.
7867 In addition, Central Island Broadcasting has added a commitment of $10,000 annually, $9,600 in new Canadian talent initiative, the details of which are set out in our application.
7868 In closing, as a secondary market broadcaster we sometimes feel we do not receive the focus that major market broadcast companies seem to invite. This week, we have followed with interest applications for Vancouver for new FM service, particularly the smooth jazz style of format. I thought it would be interesting to the Commission to hear just a little about how we, Central Island Broadcasting, as small market broadcasters, deal with this kind of issue.
7869 The success of Diana Krall, a Canadian born and raised in Nanaimo, is quite obvious, especially in a format of smooth jazz music. We take great pride in being a local Nanaimo radio station where our Canadian talent development direct cash initiative goes to support young artists like Diana and the jazz and high school bands that she performed with in her school years. Yet, at the time, how would anyone know of the future for such a wonderful young talent.
7870 In our opinion, this is where commitment and support for our young Canadian talents or artists must be preserved. Talent of this kind does not only reside in big cities and the importance of secondary market radio stations should not be underestimated.
7871 CIB is the only applicant that is appearing here at this hearing for 106.9 FM and we understand the two technical interventions by Standard and CHUM have, in effect, been withdrawn.
7872 Madam Chair and Commissioners, we hope you can approve our application and we look forward to responding to any questions you may have.
7873 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you very much.
7874 I will turn to Commissioner Cardozo.
7875 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thank you, Madam Chair.
7877 MR. ADSHEAD: Thank you.
7878 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Let me get the pronunciation right. It's Mr. Adshead?
7879 MR. ADSHEAD: Okay.
7880 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I don't have too, too many questions for you. They will be under three headings or less: marketing, technical issues and programming issues.
7881 Let me just ask you, out of the number of -- I want to get a sense of the marketing challenges facing you currently.
7882 You talked about the out-of-market competitors. I guess there are no in-market competitors because you own the whole thing. It's sort of like Remington shaving blades, he liked the company so much he bought it.
7883 But you said there are some 20 Vancouver stations and 27 Washington stations. Are they all competitors to you or are there a few who you think are prime competitors?
7884 MR. ADSHEAD: We consider them all to be competitors for audience, which fragments the existing marketplace.
7885 It is unique in that if we were in Prince George or in Kelowna, British Columbia or in Kamloops, we might have three or four stations within the market that we are vying for that audience. I think we do the best job that we can to retain and repatriate that existing audience, but it is an every day challenge when you have such very specialized stations which will automatically take certain segments of that marketplace away.
7886 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Are there other oldies-type stations or stations that are more like your format among these 47 stations?
7887 MR. ADSHEAD: Perhaps Brad, who is our programmer and our expert on programming, would like to comment on that.
7888 MR. EDWARDS: A couple of stations that come to mind from the Vancouver market, for example, would be AM-600, The Bridge; 650 CISL Vancouver; KBSG Seattle at 97.3 also has a presence in our marketplace. They too program the oldies format. And there is a relatively new station out of Seattle as well at 96.5 called The Point, and they specialize primarily in the '80s format. They all have a presence in the Nanaimo market.
7889 So in terms of the relativity to the oldies format, they are there.
7890 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: What sense do you get from listeners as to how important a local broadcaster is? What are they looking to you for? Is it things like local news and traffic information?
7891 MR. EDWARDS: I think they are looking for a connection to the community. All these stations that I have mentioned, 650 CISL Vancouver, KVSG in Seattle, they are all fine broadcasters. We are playing the same music, the difference being we are broadcasting from Nanaimo for Nanaimo.
7892 We have been in the market for a number of years, as Mr. Adshead had indicated, and I don't think anybody understands the market better than we do. That is the primary difference between us and them.
7893 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Ms Johns, you had talked about the projected declines, about some of the challenges you are having in terms of revenue. It isn't all negative for you. In the 1996 through 1998 period there was a bit of increase. I guess the last year has not been good for you.
7894 But I'm thinking also there seems to be a sense from the Conference Board of Canada and others that the economy in British Columbia is now on the mend and has turned the corner. Do you agree with that and, with a yes or no, how does that play out in Nanaimo?
7895 MS JOHNS: The economic conditions that you have mentioned may be happening in the greater Vancouver area, but it is not something that we are seeing in our Vancouver Island community. Things are still very tough in some of those areas, a lot of resource-based communities, and that economic turnaround, we are not seeing that on Vancouver Island. Therefore, people are even more careful in how they are spending their advertising dollars, and in a signal that is not giving them the coverage that they want and targeting the audience they want, they are not willing to spend that money on a signal that is not reliable.
7896 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So that is the crux of you feel that an FM is more reliable for those doubters?
7897 MS JOHNS: The FM will allow us to compete with these other signals coming into the area. It will be a stronger signal. It will be able to give the coverage and bring back some of those listeners that have indicated that the AM cycle is not giving them -- not meeting their needs.
7898 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Let me move to a couple of -- did you want to add anything?
7899 MR. ADSHEAD: No, I think we're fine. Thank you.
7900 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay.
7901 Let me move to technical questions.
7902 Any time you want to add anything, please just jump in and say it. The object of the hearing, as you know, is just to get any additional information we need further to what you have provided us with whatever you think will be useful.
7903 Now, as you know, among some of the FM applications competing at this hearing, various frequencies have been identified. Some applicants have suggested that 106.9 could be used in Vancouver. Why do you think you are better for 106.9 as opposed to somebody else who might be interested in that frequency?
7904 MR. ADSHEAD: I would like to call on Doug Allen to offer his comments and thoughts, after tedious studies on this particular issue.
7905 MR. ALLEN: I guess one of the things in the intervention referred to, Commissioner, there were certain statements made with respect to the status of two of the stations that would be protected by 106.9 and 107.1 from Vancouver. Those were called tentative deletions.
7906 We understand, of course, that those channels are not going to be deleted. They are still there. Therefore, the suggestion that they would work are not valid.
7907 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: That is the 106.9 along with 107.1?
7908 MR. ALLEN: And 107.1, yes. Because of potential interference to existing stations that are not deleted or are not going to be deleted.
7909 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay. Let me see if I understand this correctly.
7910 There is, between the two frequencies, an overlapping area, which I understand is largely over water and that there is some over land, primarily some islands east of Ladysmith. Is that correct?
7911 MR. ALLEN: Yes, because of -- it depends to what patterns we are looking at. We haven't seen the finally designed patterns for either of these stations. We have seen tentative design patterns based on a supposition that the stations referred to have been deleted. Therefore, we have not see the final design indicating that the pattern from Vancouver has been pulled back sufficiently to provide adequate protection.
7912 Therefore, if it was the original proposed pattern, the area of interference would be significant. Obviously, if you can pull it back to zero, or something like that, then you are fully protected. But that wasn't done.
7913 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: From your knowledge, that can be done technically? That region of interference can be removed? You can pull it back?
7914 MR. ALLEN: I am only looking at Nanaimo. There is the other aspect of protecting Squamish, so I'm not touching that.
7915 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay.
7916 MR. ALLEN: That I think Rogers will comment on, but from our perspective if they pulled back far enough, yes, the area of interference would be in the water.
7917 But whether or not the antenna is practical would be another question.
7918 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So as it stands, it is your view that 106.9 and 107.1, as currently being proposed, are not separate from each other. There is a problem?
7919 MR. ALLEN: That's right.
7920 MR. WEAFER: Commissioner Cardozo, just to be clear, because Standard addressed the technical filing that was filed briefly in their presentation earlier in the week. In responding to their intervention against Central Island, Mr. Allen reviewed their study and, just to highlight, we believe their study was in error in terms of the identification of frequencies being tentatively deleted which are still in place.
7921 Just to be clear, we understand CHUM is withdrawing their intervention on that point. Standard, on the record, withdrew their intervention on the point. The remaining issue is just to discuss with Mr. Allen.
7922 But for Nanaimo, we are the only applicant for 106.9 and we can't offer the service that we are proposing and Mr. Allen is saying we believe that if a Vancouver applicant can pursue the frequency in the event somehow the 107.1 is deleted from Squamish, which we doubt would happen, their frequency can be modified such that Nanaimo could operate properly and not be interfered with by the Vancouver city.
7923 The record is, unfortunately, not perfectly clear because CHUM hasn't spoken to this point yet on the record. Standard has.
7924 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: In the course of this hearing a number of FM frequencies have been mentioned to us as being possibilities. Most people have applied for one frequency that there is the competition over, but we have asked: Are you aware of other frequencies and people have identified various frequencies out there, one of them being 106.9.
7925 My question is this: If we were to grant 106.9 to another applicant, is there another frequency that would meet your needs?
7926 MR. ALLEN: Commissioner, I think after two years of trying to come up with a frequency and, as you realize, in Vancouver after the hearing that we have been listening to, the problem of trying to find an adequate channel is extremely difficult. Even 106.9 in Nanaimo had to have a specially designed antenna pattern to provide protection to an existing station, in particular CISQ in Squamish, and at the same time not interfering with the recently authorized station in Victoria, CFEX-FM.
7927 So it is squeezed in even as it is, but that is still the best squeeze. So it is really massaged down to the very last ounce, you could say.
7928 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay. Let me ask your proposal for the new station, it would be an FM station, and with that comes certain obligations, one of them being to have a certain amount of local programming. You have talked about that in your opening.
7929 I wonder if you could just give us a bit more about how many hours and the nature of the local programming that you would have?
7930 MR. EDWARDS: I will maybe start on this. Mr. Adshead probably will have a couple of more points to add in as well.
7931 In terms of our local programming, all of our programming currently originates from Nanaimo. That is including all of our feature programs, whether it is the weekly top 30. We do not currently subscribe to any nationally or internationally based programming features for either of our radio stations and firmly believe that the programming that we serve the community -- we are serious about the community -- is locally produced.
7932 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And can you focus on the spoken word programming that you plan to do?
7933 MR. EDWARDS: Spoken word comes in a number of different forms outside of news and sports. We have specially designed features that are of interest to the unique lifestyles in the community of Nanaimo, including our ski reports; marine patrol, marine being one of the major modes of transportation in the Nanaimo area. The type of climate that we live in, the climates change, the conditions change, marine patrol is part of our every day life, as our environmental reports which we do on the hour. Marine patrol is specifically through the boating season from late spring right through until fall.
7934 We also have a number of other features that focus specifically on junior sports, Soccer Talk for one. Seasonal baseball schedule scores from the dugout is another feature. We also have a talk show hosted by a veteran broadcaster that we have on staff, our news director with over 25 years experience, and that is a 30-minute issue-based -- Nanaimo issue-based discussion forum for citizens and people in the community to discuss the different --
7935 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Is that daily?
7936 MR. EDWARDS: That is daily Monday to Friday, correct.
7937 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay.
7938 Do you have a sense of how many hours spoken word programming you are going to be having a week?
7939 MR. EDWARDS: Well, we have broken it down more in terms of percentages. News and sports each with about 1.5 per cent spoken word. Our half-hour talk show, for example, that is 2.5 hours a week right there on our local issues.
7940 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay. How do you distinguish, or how would the listener distinguish -- well, let me put it differently.
7941 How would this spoken word programming on the FM you are applying for differ from your other two stations?
7942 MR. EDWARDS: Again, what we are proposing with the new FM is, it is a nice complement to our existing younger targeted FM signal, 102.3 The WAVE, allowing us to cover the demographic spectrum of the community of Nanaimo and I think the issues would be such that some of the things that we would be discussing on 102.3 would be more targeted to the 18 to 35, whereas with the oldies proposed format that we have right now would be more specific to 25-49.
7943 We have an election coming up on Monday, for example, that is something that is of huge interest to our community, and that is the type of discussion forum that we would be partaking in.
7944 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So in your basket of offerings, you have something for each member of the family kind of thing?
7945 MR. EDWARDS: Well, we try not fragment ourselves too much, but we try to offer good quality family programming on both our signals, yes.
7946 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Yes.
7947 Let me just ask, in closing, a general question.
7948 I was struck by this suggestion that you were evolving into an oldies station and I am interested in this concept of evolution in terms of formats.
7949 Is it what has happened that the station has grown with your audience and as the audience -- is it the same sort of batch of people that you are growing with over time, or do you just stick with one format -- or do you stay tuned to one age group, which means that you would be changing the format of music?
7950 MR. EDWARDS: I think it holds true with a lot of formats that, yes, you grow with the demographic. CKEG has gone through some interesting transitions over time. We have gone from country to oldies. That is where the evolution in the last 18 months has been.
7951 And then it comes down to how do you define oldies? I have worked with other oldies stations before where the primary focus is 1950s and 1960s. What we are proposing in our format is more specifically targeted to the core target demographic which makes up approximately 40 per cent of Nanaimo's population. That is the 25-49. We felt that late '60s, '70s and even the 1980s was more specific to -- more representative of the community which we are serving.
7952 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay. Earlier this week we heard from one of the people appearing, one of the applicants said she liked Midnight Train to Georgia by Gladys Knight and the Pips, even though that was written before she was born, which I thought was rather an offensive comment. But, as I see it, you have something for her as well as her parents in this --
7953 MR. EDWARDS: And I was only 10 when that song came out, and it --
7954 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Yes, sure.
--- Laughter / Rires
7955 MR. EDWARDS: -- definitely plays a part in our format, yes.
7956 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Well, those are my questions.
7957 Thank you very much.
7958 THE CHAIRPERSON: I don't think we have any other questions.
7960 MR. RHÉAUME: Maybe briefly, Madam Chair.
7961 Mr. Allen, I am not sure if I quite understood the implication of 107.1 and the impact that this would have on your using 106.9.
7962 There is an issue regarding interference on certain islands east of Ladysmith. How populated are these islands and to what extent is coverage, perfect coverage significant to your application?
7963 MR. ALLEN: Again I have to refer to what was in the document which showed a particular coverage. When one takes a look at that, the area of interference was more significant than you are referring to. However, I suggest that if that pattern -- if we can ignore Squamish -- was pulled in sufficiently, then the area of potential interference would be out in the water where it would not be significant.
7964 But at the present time, what was proposed is not acceptable. There is a significant area of interference to the proposal by Central Island.
7965 MR. RHÉAUME: I guess I'm trying to understand -- and I'm not an engineer, please bear with me -- what you mean by "can be pulled back significantly".
7966 At what point does it become unacceptable and at what point might it be borderline acceptable?
7967 MR. ALLEN: Well, when the area of interference from the proposed or suggested station in Vancouver overlaps the proposed contour only out in the Straits, and we have taken a look at something where if you pull it back this much then that area of interference, it is there, but it is out in unpopulated fishing country.
7968 MR. RHÉAUME: So as long as it is over water it would be acceptable to you?
7969 MR. ALLEN: That's right.
7970 MR. RHÉAUME: Thank you.
7971 Thank you, Madam Chair.
7972 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you.
7973 Thank you very much.
7974 I think what we will do is, if it is all right with the Radio Malaspina people, take lunch now and then come back at -- why don't we say 1:30. That's all right?
7975 Thank you.
--- Upon recessing at 1145 / Suspension à 1145
--- Upon resuming at 1330 / Reprise à 1330
7976 THE CHAIRPERSON: Ready to continue?
7977 Madam Secretary.
7978 MS VOGEL: Thank you, Madam Chair.
7979 Our next presenter is an application by Radio Malaspina Society for a broadcasting licence to carry on an English-language FM campus community programming undertaking at Nanaimo.
7980 The new station would operate on frequency 101.7 megahertz, with an effective radiated power of 880 watts.
7981 Recognizing that the application was filed prior to the release of the new Campus Radio Policy, the Commission may with to discuss with the applicant its plans regarding its adherence to the requirements of the policy.
7982 Whenever you are ready, please go ahead.
APPLICATION / APPLICATION
7983 MR. BIBBY: Thank you, Madam Secretary.
7984 Commissioners, I know this has been a long arduous week for you, so we will try will try to be as painless and brief as possible.
7985 Unfortunately, our seating arrangement has changed slightly from what you have on your cover page so, if I may, before I start my presentation I would just like to introduce these wonderful people who made a long, hard journey over the Strait this morning on the ferry.
7986 Next to me is Kam Abbott. Kam is our Technical Manager and he came to Radio Malaspina from the audio engineering end of the television world, with 12 years of experience. Kam is also currently employed at Malaspina University College in Nanaimo as a Media Technician.
7987 Next to Kam is Danna Gauthier. Danna is Past Secretary and current Director of the Radio Malaspina Society and a future programmer.
7988 Unfortunately, our Program Manager, Mario Ravello, is home sick with an ear infection epidemic that seems to be sweeping through Nanaimo these days, so in his place we have Marc Hooper, who is President of the Radio Malaspina Society and he will be talking on behalf of Mario.
7989 Next to Marc is John Zador. John is one of our volunteer programmers. Seated directly behind me is Mark McLeod and John Matthews from Prometheon Electronics, and they have been very helpful in helping us prepare our licensing application as well as for this hearing.
7990 Next to John and Mark is Linda Ring, who is also one of our volunteer programmers; Lynn Hitchcox, who is our traffic co-ordinator; and next to Lynn is Rose Dickson, who is also a volunteer programmer.
7991 Seated third row back, on the end, is Dan Péon, who is also a volunteer programmer and a Director and Treasurer of the Radio Malaspina Society, and he also represents, for our purposes this afternoon, the musical community of Nanaimo.
7992 Next to Dan is Brett Christianson and Andrew Coates, two of our volunteer programmers.
7993 So with the introductions out of the way, I would like to start our presentation.
7994 First, we would like to tell you a little bit about Nanaimo. As you can see from the map enclosed in your handout, the city is situated within eyesight of Vancouver across the Strait of Georgia on Vancouver Island. It lies amongst mountainous and hilly terrain with boundaries stretching out north and south for more than 12 miles along the Island's eastern shore.
7995 It is surprising that Nanaimo's land area is actually larger than that of the City of Vancouver. As mentioned, the topography within Nanaimo's city limits is filled with hills and valleys. While scenically beautiful, these features provide challenges blanketing the area with adequate communication coverage.
7996 Nanaimo is the major ferry terminus, transportation and business hub for Vancouver Island north of Victoria in what is called the mid-island area. The city's economy has diversified from traditional mining, forestry and fishing industries to include manufacturing, hi-tech, tourism and service-based trades. Nanaimo claims to have more retail outlets and shopping malls per capita than any city in North America.
7997 Now, like other major urban centres in B.C., Nanaimo has experienced a spectacular population boom over the past decade. This influx of people has included those from around the world as well as the rest of Canada seeking the mild climate, scenic beauty and quality of life this part of our country affords. As a result, Nanaimo has evolved into a rich multi-ethnic and cultural community.
7998 The city supports the arts with a multitude of theatre groups, art galleries and performance venues including our new multimillion dollar Port Theatre. Programs offered by Nanaimo's K-12 school system and Malaspina University College have been responsible for contributing a remarkably high percentage of musical talent to the entertainment world including Ingrid Jensen, Dave Gogo and, of course, Diana Krall.
7999 Gabriola Island, the northernmost of the Gulf Islands is only a short 20-minute ferry trip from downtown Nanaimo and is the home to a large population of world class musicians, artists, authors and craftspeople. In short, Nanaimo and area is a cultural and artistic melting pot.
8000 However, Nanaimo is also something of a paradox. The city's close geographic proximity to Vancouver, as well as Victoria, Bellingham and Seattle, puts it adjacent to one of the most media-saturated markets in Canada. As Bob Adshead from Central Island Broadcasting stated earlier in his presentation, Nanaimo residents can receive over 50 off-air radio and television signals daily.
8001 Nanaimo serves a trading area of over 200,000 people, and yet we have no local television outlet and are served by only two commercial radio stations. The domination of external media into the Nanaimo market fragments the cultural base of our community.
8002 There is no question Nanaimo residents can enjoy an unlimited choice of radio formats and musical styles. However, Vancouver, Victoria and Seattle news coverage, talk shows and advertising has little relevance to the people of Nanaimo. It is also unlikely that these stations will air recordings by local Nanaimo musicians.
8003 Our Technical Manager, Kam Abbott, once observed that he knows more about daily traffic conditions on Lions Gate Bridge than he does about Nanaimo's Parkway.
8004 On the odd occasion when there are news reports relevant to Nanaimo on mainland stations, they are usually of a sensationalistic or negative nature such as political corruption, drug bust or a domestic violence story. Over time these stories tarnish the city's image without balanced reporting on the positive things that occur in Nanaimo on a daily basis.
8005 So while Nanaimo residents may have a multitude of radio stations to choose from, they are underserved by the electronic media at the local level. Now, please understand, this is in no way a criticism of Nanaimo's two existing radio stations. We applaud Bob Adshead and his team at Central Island Broadcasting for over the years they have made sincere attempts at offering a wider variety of programming but at the expense of their bottom line.
8006 We recognize the pressure of competing in a highly specialized and demographic commercial radio market and that Central Island Broadcasting needs to engage rival stations on a level playing field. It is for this reason that we feel the arrangement negotiated with Central Island Broadcasting is well conceived to allow them to pursue their destiny while allowing Nanaimo a third radio station that will provide unprofitable and experimental programming.
8007 Now I would like to talk for a moment about Radio Malaspina and our relationship with Malaspina Community College. At present student form the majority of our governing board and comprise over 50 per cent of our programming staff. It is Radio Malaspina's goal to foster synergy between Malaspina University College and the community-at-large.
8008 For example, we have recently entered into an agreement in principal with the Athletics Department to webcast a six game package of Mariner basketball games early in the New Year.
8009 We will also enter into discussions next month with the Journalism Department to set up a formal work experience program for journalism students. There are thriving music and drama programs at the College that can provide an unlimited source of program material and we intend to pursue this actively with department heads over the next few months.
8010 Malaspina University College has an ongoing contingent of at least 500 international exchange students from countries including China, Japan, Korea, Poland and the Czech Republic, among others. We envision Radio Malaspina acting as a window to the community-at-large for these students by offering programming in their native tongues to help ease the anxiety of blending into our west coast Canadian culture.
8011 We have already originated live broadcasts from the campus, including Welcome Week celebrations at the beginning of the fall term, and plan to offer ongoing coverage of campus events such as student elections and concerts.
8012 We would like to touch briefly on the business side of Radio Malaspina. Included in our handout is a summary of newly projected revenues and expenses. This has been modified slightly from our licence application and reflects the changes in frequency, power and coverage pattern.
8013 We will rely on revenue from three main areas: student contributions, community funding and advertising revenue. I believe our revenue projections are quite conservative. We have had the pleasure of making several presentations to local community groups and service clubs over the past few months and have received nothing but positive feedback.
8014 We anticipate that once Radio Malaspina becomes airborne, there will be overwhelming financial support from the community through donations and advertising revenues. We have already held one benefit concert with local musicians, thanks to the hard work and organization of Dan Péon whom we introduced to you earlier. We will plan more of these activities which will serve to benefit, not only Radio Malaspina financially, but also Nanaimo's cultural community in turn.
8015 While financial projections can sometimes be nebulous, the human resources at Radio Malaspina are more tangible. Despite the delay in bringing our application before you, enthusiasm at Radio Malaspina has not waned. In fact, it has made us more determined to succeed.
8016 As mentioned earlier, we have been webcasting since April 1st of this year. During this time we have attempted to instill a discipline and mindset into our programmers that they treat their shifts as if they were broadcasting over-the-air on FM. Our core of over 50 volunteers have responded and shown up faithfully for their programs during all hours of the day and night, in all kinds of weather and regardless of holiday schedules.
8017 Our experiences with webcasting has made the current team of people, some of whom sit before you today, better equipped and more capable to deal with the challenges of running a campus-based community radio station. In other words, the delay in bringing our application before you has made us stronger. This is not to imply that further delays will turn us into superhumans.
8018 As you know, our initial hearing date was postponed due to interventions from both Central Island Broadcasting and Rogers Broadcasting Ltd. Since Rogers dropped their intervention a few months ago, we have been successful in negotiating a joint arrangement, with the co-operation and goodwill of Bob Adshead and his team at Central Island Broadcasting.
8019 This has resulted in Radio Malaspina being on a much more solid technical footing than was originally conceived. Essentially, we will benefit from a first class transmission facility and reach more listeners in the northwest portion of our coverage area. This arrangement also allows us to divert some of the financial resources from the transmission side and into the production side where it is greatly needed.
8020 The Board of Directors and management of Radio Malaspina takes great pride in the accessibility afforded students of Malaspina University College and the community-at-large. We have extended an open invitation to people of all ages and ethnic groups to get involved, put program proposals together and get them on the air. As a result of our programmers currently range in age from 16 to 63, representing several ethnic backgrounds.
8021 We have conducted a volunteer recruiting campaign with kiosks in shopping mall,s as represented by a copy of the picture in our handout. Recruiting drives in conjunction with Nanaimo's Volunteer Centre have yielded quality people such as Erlinda Okano, our volunteer co-ordinator with years of volunteer experience, and ties to Nanaimo's multicultural community; and Al Webster, a 20 year broadcast veteran whom is now our news and public affairs director. Unfortunately, neither of these two people could make it today.
8022 We have advertised in the local First Nations newsletter for programmers and are currently exploring ethnic programs with the Filipino and Islamic communities. Multilingual and multicultural programming will be core to our program schedule.
8023 Marc Hooper will elaborate further on our programming shortly, but first I would like to call upon Kam Abbott to talk a bit about the technical history and issues with Radio Malaspina.
8024 MR. ABBOTT: Thank you, Gord.
8025 Good afternoon. My name is Kam Abbott, I am the Technical Manager for Radio Malaspina. I have been working with the Society through the process of obtaining a licence and launching the station for about three years now. As you may be aware from Gord's presentation, as of April 1, 2000 we have been webcasting on the Internet and operating in the same manner as a 24/7 radio station.
8026 By launching with webcasting, we have had the unique opportunity to work with and train our volunteers, and recognize any potential problems we may have not encountered before the launch of an FM station.
8027 We have not had the luxury of many things that commercial broadcasters may take for granted with experienced, professional staff. This includes such basic things as using a microphone and how to cue a CD player. Therefore, in many ways launching into webcasting first has helped us to recognize and correct many of these technical and logistical problems that would typically have to be overcome once a station is already on the air.
8028 This has also benefited us because when we do launch with FM service, we will have a core of volunteers with over a year's experience.
8029 Webcasting has also allowed us to gain credibility within the community, and we have already built a loyal listening audience. Also, by incorporating Internet technology into our operations, we are now able to get anywhere in the community and, as a result, produce a live CD-quality remote with little or no expense.
8030 Some of our functions already include weekly live broadcasts from a local nightclub featuring local artists, as well as building community relations, and volunteer recruiting at the college and local shopping malls.
8031 We would also like to recognize Central Island Broadcasting in supporting us with an agreement to co-locate with their transmission facilities at Cottle Hill. By using 101.7 and co-locating with their facilities, we are able to improve our originally proposed coverage to the north end of Nanaimo, and thereby reach more of our listening audience.
8032 Central Island Broadcasting has graciously offered the use of their existing antennas, transmitter shack and back-up generator. They have also offered to install new facilities such as studio-to-transmitter link and an antenna combining network. We are very grateful to them, for we will receive a top-notch first-class transmitting facility at no additional cost to Radio Malaspina.
8033 I can also tell you, on a personal note, that I am very excited about this project. I have been working with the staff and volunteers of Radio Malaspina almost from the beginning and I have never before worked with such a dedicated group.
8034 Thank you for this opportunity to speak before you.
8035 I will now pass you back to Gord now.
8036 MR. BIBBY: Thank you, Kam.
8037 I will now ask Marc Hooper to briefly speak about the programming.
8038 MR. HOOPER: Knowing that programming is the life-blood of any station, we have approached this very seriously.
8039 First, we are fortunate to have a Program Director with eight years radio experience from which we can draw.
8040 Secondly, we have opted to go with a transitional format to accommodate the wide range of program genres and spoken word ideas that are planned for CHLY.
8041 Simply put, we will structure music formats that are closely linked together to give a smooth segue from show-to-show. For example, Wednesdays from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. is One Love Reggae, followed by World Beat at 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. On Saturdays, at 11:00 a.m. to 12 noon, Classic Rock is followed by Metal Lunch at 12 noon to 1:00 p.m. Entertainment and sport reports would be mixed in to add to the transitions.
8042 Thirdly, training our volunteers for on-air presentation is a process we do not take lightly with an "each one teach one" method for familiarity of equipment and on-air policies. With the guidelines put in place for protocol, we are confident that our group of young adults and older programmers will represent Nanaimo with energy, decency and pride.
8043 MR. BIBBY: Thank you, Marc.
8044 With our indulgence, we have a very, very short, less than two minute example of what our programming has sounded like so far, over the Web.
8045 Mr. Operator. His voice sounded surprisingly familiar.
--- Laughter / Rires
--- Audio clip / Clip audio
8046 MR. BIBBY: I should point out, those were actual air checks -- or Web checks, I guess, if you want. Those weren't produced.
8047 Anyway, in conclusion, I would like to thank you for your attention and for the long anticipated opportunity to speak to you. We believe the City of Nanaimo is overdue for a new electronic media outlet. The artistic and music communities have no local broadcast venue through which they can showcase their talents. Radio Malaspina will meet that need.
8048 Nanaimo is overwhelmed by external media, leaving its residents fragmented and unable to tune in to local discussions or programs on subjects relevant to their neighbourhoods. Radio Malaspina can be the glue that binds the city together.
8049 Malaspina University College is a vibrant institution with academic, arts and sport programs second to none anywhere in Canada and Radio Malaspina can be instrumental in bringing the campus way of life to Nanaimo residents and Nanaimo to the lives of the student population.
8050 May we conclude with an example of what we believe is the essence of a campus-based community radio station?
8051 A few weeks ago we received a call from a young lady named Dianne Burn as a result of the recruitment drive through the Volunteer Centre. A few days later we met with her and discovered she was learning-disadvantaged. We also discovered she played keyboard in a music group with other learning-challenged people and that they performed often at the College.
8052 Dianne expressed an interest in putting a show on the air and we are currently exploring what the content and nature of that show might be. It could be a concert of one of her group's performances or it could be an examination of what it is like to live as a learning-disadvantaged person in today's society.
8053 Whatever form the program takes, it will be interesting, relevant and uniquely Nanaimo. We believe giving people such as Dianne Burn access to the airwaves is really what Radio Malaspina is all about.
8054 Thank you very much.
8055 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you very much.
8056 I will ask Commissioner Demers to question.
8057 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Thank you, Madam Chairperson.
8058 Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen.
8059 Could I start with general questions so that we can have an idea of your station in relation to the previous enterprise that presented, Central Island Broadcasting.
8060 You share their technical facilities -- or maybe you will comment on what I say. I will use general terms so that you can be more precise than I am -- and now you would be broadcasting on 101.7. Maybe you could describe what would be the power.
8061 And your studios, I understand you are already netcasting, so are your studios in the same location as the previous presenter or not? Could you elaborate or give comments on that?
8062 MR. BIBBY: Thank you, Commissioner Demers.
8063 We actually had a few questions in there as to primarily our relation with Central Island.
8064 It is true we would be sharing their transmitter facilities, we will be sharing the same transmission building, we will be sharing the same tower, we will actually be sharing the same antenna as their current CKWV station.
8065 We will not be sharing the same studios. We have our own studios. They are based in -- actually, we have two sets of studios. We have small studios up on campus and our main studios are downtown Nanaimo, centrally located in the city.
8066 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Thank you.
8067 As to the frequency, what is the power that frequency would be --
8068 MR. BIBBY: The frequency will be 101.7 megahertz and the power will be 2000 watts, 2 kilowatts.
8069 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Thank you.
8070 Has some paper been following those changes to the CRTC, or is it the first time that you indicate that you would be broadcasting on that frequency?
8071 MR. BIBBY: We did submit a change of notice through a co-operative agreement. Both entities advised the Commission and Industry Canada as well of our change.
8072 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Thank you. Maybe we will come back to that.
8073 But let's come to your business plan and your operations -- I have a few questions there -- maybe on the projected listening audience would be the first one.
8074 You have projected that your new station would capture 1 per cent of the radio listening in the Nanaimo market for each of the seven years of the operation.
8075 Is this projection specific to any particular demographic segment of the market or just a general 12-plus market?
8076 MR. BIBBY: It is hard to pinpoint. I guess I see our format more like television and of course you don't necessarily watch a particular television station, you watch a program. Of course I believe that is the way our format is structured. People will tune into programs, not necessarily listen to our station as they would CKEG or CKWV. So we probably don't use the same method of determining our numbers, our demographics as a commercial station would.
8077 Does that answer your question?
8078 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Well, I think it does, if that is the way you operate.
8079 The idea being that you would not come lower. You know, we are used to presentations where if it is 1 per cent the first year it is more the year after, and so on, and it seems that you would have, if not a ceiling at least the same number of people that would be listening to your station from year-to-year, and that is what I understand your answer is.
8080 MR. BIBBY: Certainly it will increase. I think because we do not have -- certainly we have fragmentation from outside of the city. We don't have quite the same fragmented broadcast situation within the Nanaimo area. So I believe certainly as we grow we become more -- attain a higher profile in the market our listening audience will certainly grow.
8081 It is really tough to put -- since we are a new service it is tough to put some tangible figures on that.
8082 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Thank you.
8083 In relation to the operator that is already in your area in Nanaimo, or other stations, do you expect to have listeners coming to you from the radio stations that exist in your area now?
8084 MR. BIBBY: I suspect there may be a little bit of dropoff, but I don't suspect -- I think we are really going -- as I say, we are going after more of a multicultural youth market. We hopefully will be taking some listeners away from some of the Vancouver stations. I don't suspect we would be taking many away from --
8085 MR. ABBOTT: I think it is important to point out that we would be generating, I think, a lot of listeners that weren't currently listening to radio before because we are filling in needs that weren't being filled by other broadcasters in the community, the multicultural, the local artists. So there would be listeners tuning in to hear things that weren't there before, so we would be generating new audiences.
8086 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Thank you.
8087 Now, in your written application you were discussing two models. You had a Plan A and a Plan B. Is that correct? It still is, I understand, part of your application that you said that model 1 or Plan A is essentially a non-commercial model; Plan B is different, is with more commercial activities in lieu of revenue generating from grants or --
8088 A review of the financial projections -- and you just maybe handed in further changes -- a review of the financial projections which you have submitted in section 6.1 of your application lists revenues from both national and local advertising. Can we assume that these projections are based upon your so-called B Plan or Plan B scenario?
8089 MR. BIBBY: They are probably based on Plan C now.
--- Laughter / Rires
8090 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Please elaborate on that.
8091 MR. BIBBY: Well, as I mentioned in my presentation, we have submitted a slightly revised version in our handout and we do allow for differing from our projections in our application.
8092 We have increased our advertising projections, as well as our fundraising projections. I think that is due primarily because of the change we anticipate with the joint arrangement we have with Central Island Broadcasting. We will now have a more -- a station that will actually reach a few more listeners in our coverage area than we originally had anticipated.
8093 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Thank you.
8094 So you have indicated that there were a few changes here, but those changes are the ones you are describing now.
8095 MR. BIBBY: That's right.
8096 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Are there other changes in this appendix to your oral presentation compared to what you already submitted?
8097 MR. BIBBY: No. No.
8098 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Then in Plan C, that is what you are describing today. How stable, then, is the revenue that you described in your plan here?
8099 As you know, in previous plans you had considered student levies and grants. Is this different now than it was in Plan A or B?
8100 MR. BIBBY: The student levies, the past arrangement we had with the student levies was conditional on us being on-air by September 1, 1999, so that -- 2000, I'm sorry. So the fact that we are not yet on-air in 2000, that particular arrangement has been discontinued. However, we will be going to another referendum.
8101 As indicated in our handout, we do have a letter from Stephen Littley of the Students' Union. He is President of the Students' Union and he has indicated that the students by-and-large do support the idea of a campus radio station and we feel very confident that we will get -- the referendum will be in our favour.
8102 As far as the advertising funds, I have sold advertising in Nanaimo, I had a magazine in Nanaimo. The advertising revenue for the magazine far exceeded my projections here and I think this particular enterprise will have far more profile in the community than what the magazine did, so our advertising revenues are quite conservative as are, I believe, the fundraising as well.
8103 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: There is still government funding that I see in the letter you have filed today.
8104 What are these? What do you have in mind?
8105 MR. BIBBY: Well, government funding would be primarily work assistance and program grants for various programs. We are anticipating we would get some of those, as well as assistance with employees or whatever.
8106 We do, of course, have, based on our projections here on Plan C, we do have a significant -- over the five-year plan we are actually, I think, running about $114,000 surplus. So there is quite a cushion in there. If we don't have one particular projection we can basically fall back on another.
8107 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: This is a cushion that I can see where in the letter? In the appendix to your oral presentation, that is where you would have that?
8108 MR. BIBBY: I'm sorry. On our net income at the -- I'm sorry, I haven't extended it out to the right, but if you take the net income after taxes we will actually have, over the five years, a surplus of $114,000.
8109 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Thank you.
8110 Could you go back to revenues where you say "Other (Misc Sales)" and it is 1.2. The 1.2, these are in thousands?
8111 MR. BIBBY: Those are in thousands, yes.
8112 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: In thousands, okay.
8113 What is behind miscellaneous sales?
8114 MR. BIBBY: We have entered into an agreement in principal with The Navigator, which is the community newspaper, and it is possible we could share some co-operative sales, co-operative promotions, so this would be revenue that would be generated, say, from their side on our behalf.
8115 It could be souvenirs as well. We have T-shirts printed up, toques, and things of that nature.
8116 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Thank you.
8117 I understand also that your Plan C is based on the new policy of the Commission with respect to community stations where you can advertise more "freely"?
8118 MR. BIBBY: Up to four minutes per hour, yes.
8119 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Okay. On the frequency.
8120 Some of you certainly were here during the week, is there anything to add on the use of your frequency? In other words, from what we have heard today there is a kind of understanding as to the possibility of using that frequency. There is no conflict. Comments?
8121 MR. BIBBY: Perhaps I should turn that over to our resident expert on the frequency because it is not really my bailiwick, as I'm sure you have become --
8122 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: You are lucky to have a resident expert on frequencies.
8123 MR. BIBBY: Anyway, perhaps I could call on John Matthews to talk to that issue.
8124 Thank you.
8125 MR. MATTHEWS: Thank you.
8126 Commissioner, you will be happy to know that this one is relatively straightforward.
8127 101.7 in Nanaimo is simply not available in Vancouver or Victoria because in each of those markets CITR and CFUV respectively, the university stations, are using a first adjacent channel, so it is a channel that is only really suitable for use in Nanaimo and that is what makes it so attractive to us.
8128 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Thank you.
8129 A question here that you have heard before probably: If for any reason that frequency were not available, would you be able, ready and willing to use another frequency if it could be found for the purpose of your FM station?
8130 MR. BIBBY: Absolutely.
8131 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Would you use an AM frequency?
8132 MR. BIBBY: Only if B.C. Hydro would donate power for a year.
--- Laughter / Rires
8133 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: I understand they heard.
--- Laughter / Rires
8134 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: That would be the end of my questions, Madam Chair.
8135 Counsel may come back to conditions of licence.
8136 Thank you, Madam Chair.
8137 MR. BIBBY: Thank you.
8138 COMMISSIONER DEMERS: Thank you.
8139 THE CHAIRPERSON: I just have one question and only again because we have asked it of everybody.
8140 Mr. Matthews, do you have any studies that we don't have that you could file with us on the frequency issue? When you said this was quite straightforward, it meant there were no more.
8141 MR. MATTHEWS: The question of the use of 101.7 in Nanaimo is quite straightforward.
8142 Going into this whole process we did study, of course, all available potential frequencies in Nanaimo and, of course, this application was originally for 106.9.
8143 But we did turn up a third possibility, just to make your job all the more confusing. 107.7 might also work in Nanaimo, but it is very close to the top of the FM band and therefore might run into some problems with clearance from the people at Nav Canada.
8144 THE CHAIRPERSON: I'm looking at our technical genius and seeing if you would like those for your files, the collection of technical maps and studies.
--- Laughter / Rires
8145 THE CHAIRPERSON: This is a very congested area and any information we can get would think --
8146 MR. MATTHEWS: You will be provided with a full report.
8147 Thank you.
8148 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you very much.
8149 I don't have any questions, but I believe counsel does.
8150 MR. RHÉAUME: Thank you, Madam Chair.
8151 It is actually Mr. Bibby and colleagues, just a little bit of housekeeping here.
8152 Conditions of license that flow from the Campus Radio Policy, I believe you have indicated in your application that you have agreed to all of them and these have to do with spoken word, station-produced programming, Category 3 music, level of hits, and you have discussed just now, I guess, advertising limits.
8153 So do you still agree to all of these conditions of licence as per the policy?
8154 MR. BIBBY: Absolutely, yes.
8155 MR. RHÉAUME: Thank you.
8156 I believe your engineer has indicated just now that the frequency you are applying for is not available for Vancouver. Do you have any studies on that, or do you have any tests?
8157 MR. MATTHEWS: It is a straightforward matter in this case. Again, the material will be described in the report, but in this case we have first adjacent channels already in both Vancouver and Victoria that simply exclude the possibility of the use of the channel in Vancouver.
8158 MR. RHÉAUME: So based on your application for this frequency, you shouldn't be here.
8159 MR. MATTHEWS: If you say so.
--- Laughter / Rires
8160 MR. RHÉAUME: Thank you.
8161 Thank you, Madam Chair.
8162 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, counsel.
8163 Thank you very much.
8164 You can go now. Thank you.
--- Laughter / Rires
8165 THE CHAIRPERSON: We are finished with you.
8166 You are excused. Perhaps that's what I should say to students.
--- Laughter / Rires
--- Upon recessing at 1416 / Suspension à 1416
--- Upon resuming at 1420 / Reprise à 1420
8167 THE CHAIRPERSON: Madam Secretary.
8168 MS VOGEL: The next item is the application by Rogers Broadcasting Limited on behalf of Rogers Radio (British Columbia) Ltd. for a broadcasting licence to carry on an English-language FM radio programming undertaking at Abbotsford.
8169 The new station would operate on frequency 107.1 with an effective radiated power of 215 watts upon surrender of the current licence issued to CFSR Abbotsford.
8170 The applicant is proposing a gold-based adult contemporary music format.
8171 The applicant is also requesting permission to broadcast simultaneously on the AM and FM bands for a period of three months before surrendering the current licence issued to CFSR.
8172 Please go ahead whenever you are ready.
APPLICATION / APPLICATION
8173 MR. MILES: Thank you very much, Madam Chairperson, members of the Commission.
8174 It looks like we have cleared the house so we are here together.
8175 I am Gary Miles, the Executive Vice-President, Radio Operations, Rogers Broadcasting. With me today, on my immediate right, are: Erin Petrie, the General Manager and Program Director of CFSR-AM Abbotsford; and Steve Edwards, Vice-President Engineering. To my immediate left, Karen Young, the owner of Great Lengths Marketing Group and President of the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce; and Brian Baynham, the Chair of the Rogers Broadcasting Vancouver and Area Local Advisory Board.
8176 Behind me, sitting at the far end of the table is Wayne Stacey of Wayne Stacey and Associates, one of Canada's leading broadcast engineering companies. And back there, Wolfgang Von Raesfeld, Vice-President, Rogers Broadcasting and Vancouver Market Manager.
8177 We are before you today to present our application to change the frequency of CFSR-AM Abbotsford from 850 kilohertz on the AM band to 107.1 megahertz on the FM band.
8178 We believe that the approval of this application would be in the public interest because:
8179 One, it will increase the choice and diversity of high quality, community-responsive radio programming for listeners in the Abbotsford area;
8180 Two, strengthen the Abbotsford radio market and the Canadian broadcasting system;
8181 Three, have no impact on the Vancouver radio market;
8182 Four, involve and help to build the local community; and
8183 Five, make the most efficient use of available radio frequencies.
8184 My colleagues on the panel will address each of these points, beginning with Erin.
8185 MS PETRIE: The City of Abbotsford is located in the Fraser Valley, east of Vancouver on the south side of the Fraser River, between Langley and Chilliwack -- just a 10-minute drive from the Sumas border crossing into Washington State.
8186 Abbotsford was established in the late 1800s as a commercial centre for the local forestry industry. Today, over 135,000 people live in the City of Abbotsford. It is B.C.'s fifth largest city, after Kelowna. It is a dynamic community with a diverse local economy and a distinctive personality. Unlike the big City of Vancouver to the west, agriculture still plays a strong and visible role in our local economy, and it helps to preserve a unique rural character in our rapidly growing community.
8187 Abbotsford is served by two local radio stations, both of which are owned by Rogers Broadcasting. CFSR-AM, the subject of this application, is a local AM radio station with an oldies format. SKVX-FM-1 rebroadcasts the regional radio programming service originated by CKVX Chilliwack.
8188 Rogers Broadcasting acquired the Fraser Valley radio stations, including CFSR-AM in Abbotsford, in September 1999. Since then, we have worked hard to improve the service that these radio stations provide. As you can see from the letters that we filed with our application, the residents of Abbotsford appreciate our efforts. Karen Young will have more to say about that later in this presentation.
8189 We are looking forward to providing even better local radio service in Abbotsford, if this application is approved.
8190 We will increase musical diversity for listeners in Abbotsford by replacing the hit-driven oldies AM format with the richer and more diverse gold-based adult contemporary FM format. At the same time, we will ensure that listeners continue to have access to distinctive local programming choices, the contemporary modern rock format on XFM and the more retrospective gold-based adult contemporary format on the new FM station.
8191 Our proposed new FM station will also offer high quality local news and surveillance programming that is strongly oriented to Abbotsford. That programming will be designed to serve the needs and interests of a very diverse local audience.
8192 For example, we will provide extensive agricultural reports twice daily to serve the large agricultural community in the Abbotsford area.
8193 We will provide detailed road reports to meet the needs of the large number of commuters and business travellers in our area. Those reports will include up-to-the-minute information on high traffic areas from airborne traffic reporters, including: Highway 1, the main route into Vancouver for commuters over the Port Mann bridge; Highway 7, the Lougheed Highway serving Maple Ridge, Pitt Meadow and Coquitlam corridor; and Highways 10 and 11, the principal road connectors to the U.S. border and to the ferries.
8194 Local events in Abbotsford will be covered throughout the day in a community events report called "What's Happening". Those reports will provide local listeners with information on every day events in the community, as well as major events such as the Abbotsford Air Show, the Abbotsford Business Excellence Awards and the Abbotsford Christmas tree lighting ceremony.
8195 We will also bring a knowledgeable local perspective to bear on news and sports reporting. We will cover the local news events and the local sports matches that really matter to listeners in the Abbotsford area. For example, we will cover local sports events, like the Junior "B" hockey games played by the Abbotsford Pilots; local environmental issues, like the Sumas Energy 2 controversy; and local politics at the municipal, provincial and national level.
8196 The conversion of CFSR-AM to an FM radio station is critical to the implementation of this service improvement strategy. Of course, local listeners will benefit immediately from the higher technical quality of an FM radio signal. And that is an important benefit all on its own.
8197 In addition, this proposed conversion will allow us to compete more effectively with out-of-market radio stations. It will allow us to put a local radio station back on the map in Abbotsford.
8198 There are at least 28 out-of-market radio stations available in Abbotsford, including 16 U.S. FM radio stations based primarily in Seattle and 12 Vancouver-based radio stations. These out-of-market radio stations account for 83 per cent of all 12-plus listening in the Abbotsford area. Faced with this kind of competition, CFSR-AM currently has great difficulty attracting listeners and advertising revenues due to the poorer technical quality of its signal.
8199 The previous owners tried to respond to this out-of-market competition by providing higher quality programming. However, they found that they could not sustain the cost of that programming. Audiences want both higher quality programming and the higher technical quality of an FM signal.
8200 The approval of this application will allow us to create a stronger and more effective local radio voice for the residents of Abbotsford. It will strengthen the Abbotsford radio market and the Canadian broadcasting system as a whole by repatriating listeners from those 16 foreign FM U.S. stations.
8201 We can accomplish all of this with no direct impact on or reliance upon the larger nearby market of Vancouver.
8202 Both the 3 millivolt and the 0.5 millivolt contour for our proposed new FM radio station will fall well outside the Vancouver area. As such, CFSR-FM will not be "listenable" in that larger, neighbouring radio market and clearly would not be a Vancouver radio service based on the Commission's established definition.
8203 Like all Rogers Broadcasting radio stations, CFSR-AM makes every effort to maintain very close connections with the community that it serves. We do that in a formal way through the Rogers Broadcasting Vancouver and Area Local Advisory Board and informally through ongoing consultations with key community leaders and groups. We will continue these practices.
8204 Brian Baynham and Karen Young have a few comments to make in that regard.
8205 MR. BAYNHAM: My name is Bryan Baynham. I am a partner in the Vancouver law firm Harper Grey Easton and I have been a member of the Rogers Broadcasting Vancouver and Area Local Advisory Board for over a decade. Prior to that, I was a member of the Selkirk Advisory Board when the Vancouver radio stations and Mountain FM were owned by that company.
8206 I want to advise the Commission that Rogers Broadcasting is committed to ensuring that its local advisory boards play an important and effective role in the operation of its radio stations. In my experience, Rogers Broadcasting always welcomes and acts upon, where appropriate, the views and recommendations of the advisory board. Meetings are held regularly and are attended by local staff and senior executives from Rogers Broadcasting's head office.
8207 I believe that the Rogers Broadcasting Vancouver and Area Local Advisory Board is a very effective sounding board for local input. It provides an opportunity for local station management to present their plans for the future of their radio stations and to receive community input on those plans. The advisory board is also an excellent forum for Rogers Broadcasting to gain a better understanding of the issues and concerns within the community and to consider ways in which Rogers Broadcasting radio stations could respond to those concerns.
8208 I am pleased to advise the Commission that Dr. Skip Bassford, President of the University College of the Fraser Valley, has now joined the Vancouver and Area Local Advisory Board. Dr. Bassford represents the communities in the Fraser Valley that are served by Rogers Broadcasting radio stations.
8209 My experience on the board continues to be a very positive one. I believe that we do help Rogers Broadcasting provide better, more responsive radio programming for our respective communities.
8210 MS YOUNG: Karen Young.
8211 I want to tell you something about myself first. I have been a resident and business owner in Abbotsford for 20 years, and am very involved in my community. I am President-Elect of the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce. I have been a board member of the Abbotsford Symphony Orchestra for three years, in charge of marketing. I have been a volunteer trainer for the United Way, Fraser Valley for five years. I am a past member of Rotary's Abbotsford-Sumas club.
8212 I have been involved in many other community projects over the years, including three years of preparation for the 1995 Western Canada Summer Games, a successful event that local radio also heavily supported.
8213 Rogers Broadcasting filed a number of letters of support from residents of Abbotsford with its application. Many of those letters came from members of organizations I have been involved with, including Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce members. I am very pleased to have this opportunity to tell you in more detail how much the support of Rogers Broadcasting and CFSR means to the business and civic organizations in Abbotsford and why it is so important that the proposed move to FM from AM is approved by the CRTC.
8214 Since purchasing CFSR-AM, Rogers Broadcasting has demonstrated that they understand the importance of strong local radio programming services. A strong local radio service provides the much needed opportunity for local businesses to reach their target customers with affordable advertising. It also helps to build a sense of community that benefits community-based organizations and civic groups. This is especially important in communities like Abbotsford, where there has been rapid growth.
8215 I have seen the importance of CFSR as our local station firsthand. The support of CFSR has been instrumental in building awareness of the symphony, which benefits the arts community and, in turn, benefits the community as a whole.
8216 This community commitment is something that is not and cannot be provided by he numerous Vancouver stations also heard in the Abbotsford market. This is why your approval to move CFSR to the FM band is so important. We need to ensure that our local station has the widest possible local audience to ensure that businesses reach their customers and that clubs and organizations can inform the largest number of Abbotsford residents about their events. To do this, we need a financially healthy local radio station on the technically superior FM band.
8217 As an Abbotsford business owner, I am often in my car driving to various appointments. While a traffic backup on McCallum Road is not important on the Vancouver stations that are heard in our market it is very important to Abbotsford residents.
8218 No station in Vancouver cares about our new Arts Centre and a possible referendum, though it is a hot topic in Abbotsford.
8219 No station in Vancouver has as much at stake in reporting an escape from a local penitentiary, but that is something local residents are very concerned about. I rely on CFSR for this information and would prefer to hear the station and music on the FM dial.
8220 Since Rogers Broadcasting acquired CFSR-AM, we have seen clear evidence that they are committed to providing a higher level of local radio service. Chamber events such as the golf tournament, monthly luncheons and annual gala receive substantial support from CFSR. They want to help residents become more informed about important local events, and they are committed to working with members of the community to make Abbotsford a better place to live and to do business.
8221 One current example of the support we have received from the radio station is advertising of the Chamber of Commerce All Candidates Forums for the upcoming federal election. In addition, the station has also broadcast all candidates forums for each of the three local federal ridings. Informing the public on issues of concern, such as the federal election and the Sumas Energy 2 Project are part of the commitment the station has shown to the community. Having this type of local information, plus news and traffic, available from local voices is so important.
8222 Abbotsford is B.C.'s fifth largest community, comparable in population to Kelowna. We deserve to have CFSR as our local station available on the technically superior FM dial.
8223 The rotary clubs in Abbotsford also enjoy the awesome support of CFSR, as annual fundraisers such as the "Hole-in-One" tournament are promoted through community announcements, sports commentary, and the involvement of local media personnel who attend the event and add colour. This particular event typically raises $40,000 which goes to projects such as literacy or hospice.
8224 We wanted to be a part of this application because we know from experience that Rogers Broadcasting will do what they say. If you approve this application, Rogers Broadcasting will work with us to create a strong and effective new FM radio station that best serves our local community.
8225 I urge you to give the residents of Abbotsford access to CFSR on the FM band.
8226 MR. EDWARDS: It has been the policy of the Commission for some time now to approve AM to FM conversion applications where the conversion would benefit the local community, contribute to the objectives of the commercial radio policy and result in an efficient use of available radio frequencies.
8227 You have heard in this presentation how the conversion of CFSR-AM to an FM radio station would benefit the local community and contribute to the objectives of the radio policy. But it would also be a highly efficient use of a radio frequency that would otherwise go unused.
8228 FM frequency 107.1 megahertz would not normally be available for use in Abbotsford because it does not meet the minimum separation distance required by Industry Canada to either CKVX-FM in Chilliwack on 107.5 megahertz or to CISQ-FM Squamish on 107.1 megahertz. A broadcaster is not obligated to accept this type of short spacing because it could result in damaging interference and could place severe limitations on future technical changes.
8229 In the case of 107.5 megahertz in Chilliwack, Rogers Broadcasting is the licensee company. After careful study, we determined that we could waive our right to protection for two reasons.
8230 The first is that as the licensee of both frequencies we would be in a unique position to make any technical changes needed to optimize the performance of these second adjacent frequencies.
8231 Secondly, if there were to be an area of interference, listeners in the affected area would not lose access to the CKVX-FM service because the full XFM regional service would continue to be available to listeners in Abbotsford on the CKVX-FM-1 rebroadcaster on FM frequency 92.5 megahertz.
8232 In the case of 107.1 megahertz in Squamish, we believe that the low power proposed for our use of that frequency in Abbotsford, combined with the distance between the transmitter sites and the relatively low height of the Abbotsford transmitter site, will ensure that there is no harmful interference in the Squamish coverage area.
8233 Concerning the proposed use of 107.1 megahertz in Vancouver, we will provide evidence in our reply to the interventions that 107.1 megahertz is not available for use in that market.
8234 To state it simply, we are proposing to use 107.1 from a transmitter site atop Glen Mountain in the heart of Abbotsford at 900 feet above sea level. This Abbotsford location is some 100 kilometres from Squamish. The proposed usage of 107.1 megahertz in Vancouver, on the other hand, would be from Mount Seymour at a height of 3,000 feet above sea level, only 40 kilometres from Squamish. The use of 107.1 in Vancouver would violate Industry Canada rules and would inevitably result in severe interference in the local service area for CISQ-FM in Squamish.
8235 MR. MILES: Madam Chairperson, Members of the Commission, we believe that the approval of this application would be in the public interest for the following five reasons.
8236 One, it will increase the choice and diversity of high quality, community-responsive radio programming for listeners in the Abbotsford area;
8237 Two, strengthen the Abbotsford radio market and the Canadian broadcasting system;
8238 Three, have no impact on the Vancouver radio market;
8239 Four, would involve and help to build the local community; and
8240 Five, make the most efficient use of available radio frequencies.
8241 We appreciate this opportunity to appear before you to present our application and would be pleased to answer any questions that you may have for us.
8242 We also, Madam Chair, have another part that we may want to include into the record. We have been here observing and we know the interest of the Commission in this public hearing for some ability to utilize frequencies and make some available. The advantage of being here for a long period of time is the igniter's flame has been doused so we are --
8243 THE CHAIRPERSON: We hope so.
8244 MR. MILES: Yes, we hope so.
8245 Secondly is that we really have been able to make that observation.
8246 So we can either wait for the question, of which we were not asked because we are not applying for a Vancouver frequency, but we do have a couple of recommendations and suggestions.
8247 THE CHAIRPERSON: Well, I was going to say, I really thought that I had been studying under the --
8248 MR. MILES: Sure.
8249 THE CHAIRPERSON: -- being tutored by our expert, Mr. Lubienski(ph), and I thought I myself had become a technical expert, but hearing all this I realize how woefully complicated these issues are.
8250 So why don't I start by saying, anything that you can share with us with respect to information or studies that you can give the Commission today will be very much appreciated.
8251 MR. MILES: Okay.
8252 THE CHAIRPERSON: And perhaps you could even elaborate, then, additionally on what some of these options are.
8253 So any studies and paper and maps you can leave us, wonderful.
8254 MR. MILES: This is going to be interesting, because --
8255 THE CHAIRPERSON: And maybe I will be able to ask you questions --
8256 MR. MILES: As we go along.
--- Laughter / Rires
8257 MR. MILES: The great thing about being Friday afternoon is I sort of assume the rules are sort of out the window because --
8258 THE CHAIRPERSON: Well, the rules aren't out the window, but fortunately there aren't many people in the audience.
8259 MR. MILES: -- I had to wear my --
--- Laughter / Rires
8260 MR. MILES: I was torn between wearing my dress up and my dress down but, in any case, I am going to be a suit after looking at those kids from Simon Fraser this morning. I thought they were great. It was a great presentation.
8261 THE CHAIRPERSON: But having said that, maybe what I will do first is, I do have a couple of other questions.
8262 MR. MILES: Okay.
8263 THE CHAIRPERSON: So maybe we can do those and then get to this.
8264 One from the oral presentation.
8265 MR. MILES: Yes.
8266 THE CHAIRPERSON: You have two transmitters for CKVX. Is that correct?
8267 MR. MILES: There is one in Abbotsford and there is one in --
8268 THE CHAIRPERSON: So they are on two different frequencies.
8269 MR. MILES: Two different frequencies, yes.
8270 THE CHAIRPERSON: I see, okay.
8271 MR. MILES: Yes. Yes.
8272 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good.
8273 MR. MILES: Just while you are going through that, you will get the most non-technical response from me.
8274 THE CHAIRPERSON: I won't actually be expecting you to answer the technical --
8275 MR. MILES: You will get a very passionate technical response from Steve Edwards, who has been the architect of all of these frequencies, particularly Mountain FM. And you will get the most dispassionate, but probably highly expert opinion, from our friend.
8276 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you.
8277 I am interested in the issue of the out-of-market tuning.
8278 MR. MILES: Yes.
8279 THE CHAIRPERSON: I wonder if you could just -- I know this was originally a non-appearing item, but it would be helpful for me to just understand a bit how the out-of-market tuning affects the station, particularly what you expect to achieve in terms of both audience and revenue repatriation. If you could just --
8280 MR. MILES: Can I start from the beginning and then I am going to have Erin elaborate more on the programming responses.
8281 But if we go back in history about these AM radio stations that were in Hope and Chilliwack and Abbotsford, they were very viable radio stations under the previous owners and it was at a time when there were less signals going into the market, there were far fewer FM radio stations, and these stations were a vital part of the community.
8282 I know that because the sales manager from those places actually is working for us and has been working for us about 10 or 15 years in Gary Milne. And we have all known the former owners in terms of our association of the broadcasters.
8283 Very similar to other AM radio stations, in our experience in Lethbridge, Smiths Falls would be another good example of these kinds of AM radio stations that were connected with the community.
8284 What happened as the competition intensified, in other words signals came in, and the problem is that on an AM frequency it is a lot tougher to make the switch and make the turnaround. So the former owners tried to invest a bunch of money into the programming on the AM and it didn't work and it just gradually got stripped down. Of course that is self-fulfilling prophecy, as you take more and more services away there are less and less people who are going to worry about listening to it.
8285 The phenomena that we have seen in terms of markets like this that are in close proximity to major markets is that the people in Abbotsford want their own local radio service, but they have to have it on a signal and it has to be of a quality that is the same as the major market attached close to it.
8286 Lethbridge is a good example of that one, where we have operated a very successful AM radio station down there. It serviced the rural people. We had to apply for a conversion to FM and the Commission granted that, because our audience just disappeared on us. It wasn't able to serve because now, all of a sudden, there are a bunch of more FM signals into Lethbridge.
8287 These people, when they drive out of Lethbridge and they go into Calgary, they expect to hear the same quality programming.
8288 Wolfgang Von Raesfeld, who looked after our Kitchener market prior to coming out to Vancouver, is a more classic example and perhaps a lot similar to the problem here in Abbotsford. Here is Kitchener, which has four radio stations, two AMs and two FMs, and yet you go seven miles out of Highway 12 and you are on the 401 and there are 35 radio stations and they are all of a nature that is very good programming, they are very quality programming, and so these people expect their local radio station to have that same quality of programming.
8289 That is what we are suggesting here, is that Abbotsford needs its own FM radio station, but it must be of a quality nature that when they drive out it stands up to the competition, not just from Vancouver in this case, but from the United States. There are 16 signals coming in from the United States.
8290 So with that in mind, that is what Erin is attempting to do with the programming. When we got the stations there was that level of -- for the record, a very minimal level of programming service. Erin has raised it to another level and we need to go to the step further.
8291 So perhaps you could talk about how we plan on repatriating some of these listeners.
8292 MR. PETRIE: I would be pleased to. Thank you.
8293 We were looking at the fall 1999 BBM figures when we see 83 per cent out-of-market tuning. I would like to note that that includes 12.9 per cent which belongs to our other FM in the market.
8294 So we are looking at 5 per cent listenership to this AM radio station, and yet we are effective with the business and civic communities. That is because, you know, people want to listen to their local radio station, whether it is to the eight o'clock news or they listen to a specific feature or they hear that we have an agricultural report. We can't keep the kind of hours tuned that we need to have to be financially viable and to grow our programming.
8295 For example, you may listen to us in the morning as a resident of Abbotsford to hear what is going on in town. When you get to work, you are probably listening to an FM station. It is just more suited to at-work listening. It is just a better quality sound.
8296 So we have to compete with the QM-FMs and the KISS-FMs. Bellingham, which is just across the border, just across the Sumas border crossing, The Café is very successful in our market. In fact, while Karen wouldn't admit it, she does listen a bit to The Café, okay. I didn't want to mention it, but she does.
--- Laughter / Rires
8297 MS PETRIE: Out of Seattle, what is called Star FM 101.5, which you will also see advertisements for in the Vancouver area, is very well established.
8298 So what we would like to do is to move this frequency to FM to give us the best chance to service our local market. We would like to have 10 per cent listenership; 15, sure. Let's face it, Vancouver has terrific radio stations, a broad range of formats, you are not going to your 11 year old son or daughter to listen to the local station just because they are on FM. There are specific formats for them, both our XFM in the Fraser Valley, Z95 if they like rock, you know, all of that.
8299 But what we would like to do is grow our share, and I think right now we have a 5 per cent share and it is slipping. We do a terrific job locally. Our people are hugely committed to different organizations in the Abbotsford area. I sit on the Board of the Abbotsford Foundation, the Media Relations Committee.
8300 We have a representative on the Crime Stoppers Board which is one of the most innovative and successful Crime Stoppers organizations in Canada. We have our morning show co-host who is President of the Big Sisters organization. What we would like to do is to have a chance to convert this to really help the residents of Abbotsford provide a good, high quality radio programming, make us more financially viable.
8301 MR. MILES: I am going to ask Wolfgang to comment on it in a minute, but the reason that we can do this is because we have the resources in our parent operation of the programming expertise, we have the resources in Vancouver that we help to build this up with. So as operating within this cluster area we have programming resources, we have sales resources, we have news resources -- vast news resources because of News 1130. We have all of that expertise that we can take and put into here to build up that radio station, because at the end of the day it is going to have to compete with those major market radio stations.
8302 Wolf, you have had some experience of that.
8303 I'm sorry.
8304 THE CHAIRPERSON: Maybe what I could do is just sort of -- in terms of the repatriation, something is working because your numbers -- you have nearly tripled the hours, have you, from eleventh to third between fall 1999 and 2000?
8305 MS PETRIE: You are speaking about XFM our regional programming service, modern rock format. We are not in the BBM book.
8306 MR. MILES: That's what it was.
8307 MS PETRIE: We couldn't afford it.
8308 MR. MILES: Frankly, that is part of an example, that is great example, Madam Chair, of how we were able to do it.
8309 That radio station, when we took it over, I don't even think it was -- well, they subscribed to the BBM, I don't think they had anything except checkmarks down it. It is that kind of service provision that we will be able to do.
8310 I apologize. Did I answer your question?
8311 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes, I think so.
--- Laughter / Rires
8312 THE CHAIRPERSON: Actually, obviously we have had a little mix-up here because my question is very much -- it says CKMA, so you are saying it is XFM.
8313 MS PETRIE: We are in the BBM book this year, but that book doesn't come out until December 10 so I doubt that the information that you have is specific to CFSR-AM. I would guess that it is XFM.
8314 THE CHAIRPERSON: No, that's fine. It just says Spring 2000 numbers.
8315 MS PETRIE: We hope that at the time of our licence renewal with you that those will be the numbers that we will have in seven years.
8316 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you.
8317 Maybe we could now go to the technical, Mr. Edwards.
8318 MR. EDWARDS: Do you have a few hours?
8319 THE CHAIRPERSON: No, not a few hours.
8320 MR. EDWARDS: Okay.
--- Laughter / Rires
8321 MR. MILES: First of all, let's start with this and we are going to try to keep this -- no, I don't think we can keep it -- well, we can keep it easy --
8322 THE CHAIRPERSON: Simple.
8323 MR. MILES: -- simple, but we can't keep it easy. Okay.
8324 While we are not applying for a Vancouver licence and we are not asked to comment on ideas and solutions re spectrum for Vancouver, we want to offer the following for your consideration to the public hearing in the interests of the Canadian broadcasting system.
8325 One, we believe that 88.1 would be a viable frequency for use in Vancouver if used from Saturna Island. We have a tower and facilities on Saturna Island. We will provide the facilities to whomever the Commission may choose to license. This offer, of course, is contingent upon our application before you today.
8326 Number two, will also make available our 850 AM tower, transmitter and facilities in Abbotsford to either the Aboriginal Voices Radio Group or the Simon Fraser Campus Radio Society. We will further provide funding to pay for the operating expenses of this transmission facility for seven years. This offer is contingent upon us being granted 107.1 frequency in Abbotsford FM.
8327 We will file this letter with the Commission following this one.
8328 So there are two things, there is Saturna Island at no cost, and we will actually pay for the facilities for the use of 850 AM, if the Commission so wants to use that frequency.
8329 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you.
8330 MR. MILES: Okay. Let's try to start with, now, the other issue.
8331 The intervention against the use of 107.1 FM, in other words save that frequency for Vancouver because it can be used. Unfortunately it was based on the premise that 107.1 was not being used in Squamish. It is being used in Squamish. It is the Squamish radio station. It is Mountain FM.
8332 And it is not just Squamish. Squamish is the middle point of the Sea to Sky Highway. Twelve years ago we took over this facility from Louis Potvin and transmitters were nailed to trees, they were placed in places behind mountains, and Steve Edwards took this on as a bit of a personal mission, and I say that with the greatest degree of love because he saw what Louis was trying to do, and Louis was trying to provide some service.
8333 For those of you who don't know this area, there are no other local radio facilities that can get into it. There are lots that bounce over and there are lots that come back from Whistler, but there is nobody that services this corridor that starts when you turn around the corner at Lionhead and you start up and get not only to Whistler but actually to Pemberton.
8334 What happens on this road is that the conditions can change every 10 miles. You can come out of Vancouver with a sunny sky, you can get up as far as the McDonald's place at Squamish and it is starting to rain, and take another three hours to get further up the hill because it has now turned into snow.
8335 In fact, our advisory board members on Wednesday, I think it was, Brian, we had an advisory board meeting in Vancouver, Liz Chapman, who lives up in Whistler, was late for the meeting because of a rockslide.
8336 This is what this radio station, Squamish or Mountain FM does. We have invested untold amounts of money in providing better service about road reports, conditions, we are on the air every 10 minutes with road reports, weather updates. And this is what we do, we service this whole vital community.
8337 So that is what 107.1 is.
8338 THE CHAIRPERSON: I wonder if I could just interject here.
8339 MR. MILES: Yes.
8340 THE CHAIRPERSON: From what we have seen presented to us and what has been said in the course of these discussions about the use of this frequency, I don't think anybody suggested -- I'm sorry.
8341 I think the suggestion has been, to the extent that we have had discussions, that any interference with that signal would take place around Bowen Island and the water and that there would not -- well, that's why I'm glad to have you here.
--- Laughter / Rires
8342 MR. MILES: Perfect.
8343 THE CHAIRPERSON: Clearly we understand the issue -- I mean at least understand the geography, that you need to have that signal sort of Squamish down to Lions Bay -- not Lionshead, Mr. Miles, Lions Bay --
8344 MR. MILES: Yes, that's right. Yes, Lions Bay.
8345 THE CHAIRPERSON: -- because basically when you turn the corner you lose all the Vancouver stations and that is when you pick up Squamish. So there really is a big cutoff.
8346 So I think we understand that and I think we have all talked about that a fair bit.
8347 MR. MILES: Okay.
8348 THE CHAIRPERSON: So what I was really interested was (a) that area of interference that would be around Bowen Island and the extent to which -- and I don't know the answer to this -- we didn't bring our coverage maps -- transmitters in Gibsons and Sechelt might cover any interference.
8349 Given that I think, as you know, what we are really trying to do here is, this is a very congested area with respect to frequencies and we are really trying to see what we can do to see if we can find some and make the most efficient use of this spectrum.
8350 MR. MILES: We are going to, then, move to Steve and then to Wayne.
8351 We have some maps and things and we were going to file them in reply to the intervention, so you may hear the same material twice but, nevertheless --
8352 THE CHAIRPERSON: That is fine.
8353 MR. MILES: -- we are going to go through it, okay.
8354 So, Steve, I guess the best thing is to explain, with your map, a bit of the issues that the mountains are not quite the mountains.
8355 THE CHAIRPERSON: Technical tutorial.
--- Pause / Pause
8356 MR. EDWARDS: It is working? Yes?
--- Pause / Pause
8357 MR. EDWARDS: Can everybody see that?
8358 MR. MILES: We do have copies of this for everyone.
8359 THE CHAIRPERSON: Excellent.
--- Pause / Pause
8360 MR. MILES: Steve was actually first in his class in Show And Tell many years ago and it is coming through now.
8361 MR. EDWARDS: I'm on Show And Tell.
8362 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mr. Lubienski, can you see these maps all right?
8363 MR. LUBIENSKI: It will be all right.
8364 MR. EDWARDS: I would like to start with a larger area map at the beginning, if I could.
8365 This map covers most of greater Vancouver and a good part of the Fraser Valley. That is the proposed Abbotsford transmitter site. That is 100 kilometres from Squamish.
8366 This is the proposed Mount Seymour transmitter site, which is --
8367 THE CHAIRPERSON: Could I just clarify something here.
8368 As I understand it, virtually all of the Vancouver FM stations are located on Mount Seymour --
8369 MR. EDWARDS: That is correct. All of them.
8370 THE CHAIRPERSON: -- because of the geography it just means that they are all there.
8371 MR. EDWARDS: It is also the only place that is effectively available to broadcasters in Vancouver.
8372 There used to be transmitters on Grouse Mountain and we had to move them to Mount Seymour because they didn't want them there any more. There used to be transmitters on Burnaby Mountain, they were kicked off there -- higher power ones -- and there used to be transmitters at the base of Mount Seymour, but they have all been relocated over the years to the area. We have a tower, CBC has a tower and CHUM has a tower.
8373 THE CHAIRPERSON: And they don't interfere with one another when they are all there?
8374 MR. EDWARDS: Well, again, we have heard a lot of very loose talk this week about "You can do this" or "You can do that", "Did you try this". That isn't the way the system works.
8375 There are 30 or 40 years of experience have gone into the rules and procedures that Industry Canada has established which define the relationship between all the different frequencies.
8376 If you violate those you run a major risk of the system collapsing, if you like, because if there isn't respect for existing signals then you end up with a sort of Italian solution, but I won't get into that.
8377 In any case, I just wanted to give you a larger area picture there and now I am going to move more directly to --
8378 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: The middle dot is Mount Seymour?
8379 MR. EDWARDS: Pardon me?
8380 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: The middle dot --
8381 MR. EDWARDS: The middle dot is Mount Seymour, exactly. And that is the Squamish.
8382 COMMISSIONER CRAM: Where is the 850 tower?
8383 MR. EDWARDS: Pardon me?
8384 COMMISSIONER CRAM: Where is the 850 tower?
8385 MR. EDWARDS: This is the Abbotsford FM proposed site.
8386 COMMISSIONER CRAM: Yes, but where is the tower for the 850 AM?
8387 MR. EDWARDS: It is in that same vicinity, more out in the open, in this sort of area in here.
8388 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And where is Grouse Mountain?
8389 MR. EDWARDS: Grouse Mountain is next door there.
8390 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Why is Seymour better, is it just --
8391 THE CHAIRPERSON: It is the only one available.
8392 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: It's higher?
8393 MR. EDWARDS: It's not an issue of what is -- it would be equivalent. It would work perfectly well, but the owners of Grouse Mountain weren't interested in having transmitters in the middle of a ski slope so they asked everybody to leave.
8394 That is when, actually, we built our tower on the Mount Seymour in 1983 to act as a common site. There is something like 50 antennas on that tower now and an awful lot of broadcasters use that. CBC's tower is also very congested and this is immediately adjacent to --
8395 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: How many towers are there at Mount Seymour?
8396 MR. EDWARDS: There are three. There is a tower that was built by CHQM many, many years ago, in the early 1960s, and then the CBC tower was built after that and then the Rogers tower built by Selkirk in the early 1980s.
8397 THE CHAIRPERSON: Are the TV stations there as well?
8398 MR. EDWARDS: That is correct.
8399 Now we could move this out of the way.
8400 To begin the discussion I could give you a short version and a long version.
8401 The short version is that it is not a river and signals do turn the corner.
8402 The long version I will give you now.
8403 I would like to begin the discussion by describing the geography of the Howe Sound area.
8404 But just to make sure that we are all well located, that is the west end, that is Stanley Park, the Lions Gate Bridge, Mount Seymour is just over here, that is Horseshoe Bay, Lions Bay, Britannia Beach, and that is Squamish. The current Squamish transmitter site is right there.
8405 Now, I would like to begin the discussion by describing the geography of the Howe Sound area and CISQ's ongoing efforts to deal with the very daunting challenges posed by the rugged terrain in that area.
8406 I will then ask Wayne Stacey to discuss his analysis of the impact of the proposal to use 107.1 megahertz in Vancouver, as well as some of the regulatory issues that are involved.
8407 Now, I sort of feel fairly well qualified to discuss the technical challenges faced by CISQ because I have been closely involved with the station for its entire 20 year history, or almost all of it.
8408 It took a number of frequency and antenna changes during the course of the 1980s to achieve reliable reception in the CISQ prime coverage area, which ranges from Horseshoe Bay through to Whistler and on up through -- I'm sorry, through Squamish and on up to Whistler, a total of about 55 miles.
8409 One of the major limitations that we have yet to overcome is that we cannot transmit a stereo signal without unacceptable multipath, for reasons that I will explain. Our efforts to improve CISQ's transmitting facility are ongoing and we are planning an antenna change, a power increase, and the possibility of using synchronous repeater transmitters to improve the coverage.
8410 Let me describe the geography that has made the task so difficult.
8411 The CISQ transmitter site is located on a 750 foot hill top adjacent to Squamish. Right there. It is only accessible by helicopter.
8412 Not far south of Squamish is a major jog in Howe Sound caused by a 1,700 foot high hill. Right there.
8413 It would have made an excellent transmitter site itself, but it has no access, no power and it is in a provincial park. The direct signal to the highway is essentially blocked from that point south to Horseshoe Bay. However, there is a significant range of mountains on the west side of Howe Sound. Right down there.
8414 That range of mountains has peaks ranging from 5,000 to 7,000 feet above sea level, and these mountains reflect the signal back to the highway on the east side of the sound. So in this area we have direct coverage. Anywhere below we are talking about this sort of thing.
8415 The signal level is very erratic because of that along the highway, but provides reliable monaural reception. In effect, what we have is a signal going up and down like that. It is very, very changeable and it is changeable with seasons, with weather, with location, because the reflections are changing all the time.
8416 Because the signal along the highway consists only of reflections, it is very sensitive to interference.
8417 I would like to read to you an extract from a 1988 technical brief submitted in support of an application to change to 107.1 megahertz.
"This change in frequencies is required to overcome severe first adjacent channel interference within CISQ's coverage area."
8418 This was the second time that they had to change frequencies. The first time was for exactly the same reason.
8419 The terrain in the Howe Sound area is doubly unkind to CISQ. It makes coverage of its prime market difficult, while at the same time providing little protection from interfering signals.
8420 Let me explain why. First, mountains to the east of Howe Sound are lower, mountains in this area here. Peaks there are a maximum of 5,000 feet and many are less. They have a different orientation than those on the left side.
8421 If you looked out the right window of the plane as you came in, you would have noticed there are a number of valleys that march along like that, and they create paths.
8422 Signals are able to propagate towards Howe Sound over and between these mountains. Remember I mentioned that these mountains ranged up to 7,000 feet. Signals can propagate over there and they can come back to the highway, like that.
8423 It is important to note that we are not talking about significant distances here. The distance from the Squamish transmitter site to Mount Seymour is only 25 miles. It is only 12 miles to Lions Bay. This is incredibly lower than the minimum spacing required by Industry Canada. In this case it is 140 miles which is required normally between two channels of that class.
8424 As well, Bowen Island has two significant peaks, one almost 2,500 feet high -- that is called Mount Gardener -- and they reflect signals directly up Howe Sound. Effectively what we have is two mirrors and we get that kind of problem as well.
8425 The aerial photograph that I brought with me today is a bit of a help in explaining what is happening here.
8426 If you can see this, this photograph was taken from about 1,500 feet above Vancouver in a helicopter. That is half the height of the transmitter site on Mount Seymour.
8427 If you look there you can see a lot of mountains. Those mountains are on the far side of Howe Sound.
8428 If you look through here, that is the first of the valleys, that is Cyprus Bowl. But there are others further up and they provide paths for the signal to get through.
8429 This is Bowen Island here. That peak there is almost half a mile high. That peak is very well illuminated from Mount Seymour. Wayne will talk more about that later. But again, providing a good path of signals to come over and up.
8430 COMMISSIONER CRAM: Those reflected signals from Vancouver, are they as unreliable or as sporadic --
8431 MR. EDWARDS: Absolutely.
8432 COMMISSIONER CRAM: Okay.
8433 MR. EDWARDS: Absolutely.
8434 THE CHAIRPERSON: Which would explain why, for the most part, that I say when I turn the corner to go to Whistler I don't really get any other signals. It doesn't mean I never get them, but --
8435 MR. EDWARDS: Well, it depends on your car radio for sure.
8436 THE CHAIRPERSON: Probably because I broke my aerial and it only goes halfway up.
--- Laugher / Rires
8437 MR. EDWARDS: It has certainly not been my experience over the years. It has certainly not been Wolfgang's experience.
8438 I spoke with Perry Chan just on that very subject: Has anything changed over the years? I don't get out here quite as often as I used to. I moved to Toronto in 1985, so this is my happy hunting ground here.
8439 But Perry is the Manager of Mountain FM and without priming him at all I just said "Could you tell me how far you can receive Vancouver radio stations up towards Squamish?" and he says "I receive them all the way. He listens to CKKS as he drives to Squamish.
8440 Now, I'm not saying it is great quality. Most people wouldn't want to listen to it because those are stereo signals and with all those multiple paths, that is the very definition of multipath and it is awful.
8441 Lou Potvin has tried to transmit in stereo when he first established a station and it was absolutely impossible, totally unusable. But that doesn't mean that the signals aren't there.
8442 Mono is a great equalizer. It helps a great deal to overcome difficulties with FM.
8443 What was I going to say there? Oh, yes, it was a very good question about the way the signals vary.
8444 They are also quite low signals. I'm not saying -- radio receivers are very sensitive. These are not big signals we are talking about, it takes very little. But what happens is, you will get two independent signals veering like that, and there are places where the Squamish signal will prevail and a quarter of a mile down the road the Vancouver signal will prevail. It doesn't have to be that you can only get the Vancouver station. In a way, it would be simpler if it was that way.
8445 The problem is that you are going back and forth all the time. We are talking about co-channel interference here. This is the very worst possible kind of interference that you can have, because it doesn't matter how good your receiver is, it is tuned in both cases to exactly the same programming, or at least the same frequency. So what you do is you get both of them adding together. If one is enough greater than the other it will suppress quite nicely the unwanted one.
8446 But the problem is that in this area you can't predict. As I say, it varies throughout the day, throughout the season and with weather. This is 20 years of experience that we have all had with this station.
8447 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: If you have two -- from the same frequency you have two signals coming in from different areas --
8448 MR. EDWARDS: Yes.
8449 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: -- will they be at a slightly time? Will you get them at different times?
8450 MR. EDWARDS: Yes. And that is exactly what multipath is. The definition of multipath, why they use the word, if you only have a direct signal the radio is very happy, but if you have a signal that goes a different route and comes back to that receiver, there is going to be a difference in the time that it takes so, in effect, it is exactly like a ghost on a television receiver. That is multipath.
8451 The problem is that FM was never designed to have a stereo component. That was added later. There is a pilot that tells the receiver that it is a stereo signal, and if it jitters around, that is multipath and that is the effect that you get in your car.
8452 So if all the Vancouver stations were mono it may help, I'm not sure, but at the end of the day you still have a different set of signals on the same frequency and it would cause severe interference to the radio receiver.
8453 Now, Wayne Stacey has a map in his report indicating his prediction of the area that you would have interference in the Howe Sound area. Again, it is related to the relative values of the signals. But this is what it looks like.
--- Pause / Pause
8454 MR. EDWARDS: Now, I personally believe, based on my experience -- mind you, I am a little biased -- that that is conservative. I believe that right up to that point you are going to see intermittent interference. It is going to be most heavy here, it is going to gradually decrease.
8455 It is very difficult to say what the major contributor is of the paths of interfering signals, but my belief is that it is Bowen Island. It really does act as a great mirror.
8456 I think that is about as far as I need to go right now, but my belief is that there is no question that terrain blocking can be a practical way of increasing spectrum efficiency.
8457 In fact, we are relying on it ourselves. If you remember the previous map, we are 100 kilometres from the transmitter site with the CFSR proposal, that is 100 kilometres, that is 60 miles. The normal spacing is 240 kilometres. So we are already very significantly short spaced.
8458 If you will recall that quote, I stopped purposely a little short, the frequency that was interfering at that time, the source of the transmission of that was that site. At that time, that was before Star FM added a transmitter on Mount Seymour. The frequency of Squamish at that point was 104.7. That frequency was 104.9. It wasn't even co-channel interference.
8459 Now, the difference is that that was a much higher power at that point because they were trying their best to reach into Vancouver. It was something like 12 kilowatts and the average power we are proposing here is, I think, 215 watts. That gave us some comfort that we could make it work.
8460 So it is not an idle suggestion that there will be interference, there has been interference and there has been interference from that far away. The previous change was made necessary by the Victoria station interfering with 98.3 in Squamish, because Victoria is straight south from there and it is a another direct route for an interfering signal to come.
8461 But my final point is, given the fragile nature of the CISQ signal in Howe Sound and the inadequate blockage of incoming interfering signals, the proposal to use 107.1 in Vancouver simply makes no sense.
8462 Now, I had a lot stronger language there before, but I was told it wouldn't be professional, so I will leave it at that and I will hand it over to Wayne to discuss his report as well as some of the regulatory aspects.
8463 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay. One other thing that I am interested in, though, is the Gibsons and Sechelt transmitters.
8464 I don't know if this is the right time or wait. It doesn't matter when we do this.
8465 MR. EDWARDS: No, it is a perfectly valid question.
8466 Gibsons is not a repeater of Squamish, it is a repeater of Sechelt.
8467 It is our ongoing intention and increasing efforts to increase the amount of programming in the Sunshine Coast area. This transmitter is essential to that, because that is what provides the off-air signal for both Sechelt itself and for Pender Harbour.
8468 So the programming here is only the same as Squamish when there isn't Sunshine Coast programming.
8469 THE CHAIRPERSON: That is my question: How much Sunshine Coast programming is done that is different from --
8470 MR. EDWARDS: At this point it is, I think, two hours a day, but that will grow steadily over the years.
8471 We have seen the Mountain FM market growing and we are starting to see the Sunshine Coast market growing as well. So they are two different groups of stations.
8472 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes. I wasn't sure the extent to which it was just a straight repeater of Squamish and how much was its own independent programming.
8473 MR. EDWARDS: No, it's not a repeater.
8474 THE CHAIRPERSON: It's not a repeater.
8475 MR. EDWARDS: It is a repeater of Sechelt.
8476 THE CHAIRPERSON: It is a repeater of Sechelt which does local programming --
8477 MR. EDWARDS: Yes.
8478 MR. MILES: To clarify that, right now the current licence calls for two hours and 30 minutes a week. We were doing two hours a day.
8479 To Steve's point, we were trying to figure that out -- about six months or a year ago, Wolfgang -- yes.
8480 We have had to pull back on that because there wasn't the support that we thought there was for it. That doesn't mean that we are not going to go back and do it, because these people do demand their own service and we hear from them.
8481 So that is where we are on that one.
--- Pause / Pause
8482 MR. STACEY: Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen.
8483 What I would like to do here briefly is explain to you a little bit about what the Industry Canada rules mean in this particular case.
8484 The 107.1 assignment that Rogers has at present for Mountain FM at Squamish is what is called a Class B allotment. Better than that, it is an unlimited Class B allotment. Basically it means the station could operate up to 50 kilowatts with an antenna height of 150 metres. Operating at those parameters would entitle it, in most circumstances, to a protected service radius of 65 kilometres.
8485 Now, if you take the present site at Squamish and you plot off 65 kilometres you end up with a circle that goes out into the water here and comes around through Vancouver. So a strict application of the rules, the way they stand now, would say that no one could encroach on that circle.
8486 Now, even when stations are not achieving that circular coverage, it is still important for them to be able to retain the future potential of those unlimited allotments, because it gives them the freedom to make changes, if necessary, in order to improve service.
8487 Now, one of the things about this site at Squamish is that it is fairly low, relatively speaking, to the height of the terrain in that area. There is an application now going forward that proposes to change the antenna here and to increase the power, but retain the site. Steve has explained to you some of the vagaries of transmission that occur in this kind of terrain.
8488 So it is quite important for Rogers to be able to retain the flexibility to make changes if the changes that they are not going to propose for Squamish in fact have to be modified further. That could include a site change, and a site change could mean coming further down Howe Sound, shooting back into Squamish, and shooting down here in order to cover the mouth and the area down here that currently gets service only via signal reflection.
8489 The situation we are dealing with here is co-channel interference. Co-channel is very difficult to deal with. When you have adjacencies, first adjacent, second adjacent, the receiver selectivity gives you something to work with. If you have a better receiver you can reject the appearance on the adjacent channel. But, by definition, co-channel means it is happening on the frequency that the receiver is tuned to, so there is really nothing you can do.
8490 There are a few basic things that one does in order to mitigate co-channel interference.
8491 One is, you put the stations far enough apart.
8492 The second is, you put the antennas down lower, because then the signal won't radiate as far.
8493 The third thing is, you make adjustments to the antenna patterns and the power.
8494 In this case, because of the short distances, it is very difficult to do anything in Vancouver on co-channel that would be practical, in our view. The difficulty there is that you have only a short distance, it is 31 kilometres from Mount Seymour to the middle of Bowen Island. It is only about 23 kilometres down to Horseshoe Bay.
8495 So if you were going to try to cover this area of Vancouver with a signal that did not interfere in this part of Howe Sound, you would have very little power, if any, coming in that direction. So then you say to yourself "Well, if you don't have any power there, how can you possibly cover North Vancouver and West Vancouver?"
8496 That is the dilemma that we see in trying to use a channel that has to serve down this far and protect it from a station that is trying to use the same frequency over here. The only thing you can do, since the distances are fixed, is modify the antenna pattern or the power, or both. But if you do that, then you affect the service.
8497 So in looking at what the possibilities are for 107.1 in terms of being able to share it, we just don't see that that is, for two reasons. It inhibits the ability -- the future flexibility to make changes here, and it certainly, from a Vancouver station's point of view, would inhibit the service to that part of the city.
8498 I think that pretty well covers the area that I was asked to talk to.
8499 I have done a written report that projects the interference that you see both on 107.1 and the alternate frequency that was suggested by an intervenor, 106.9. Basically it doesn't change very much, a little bit of movement up or down.
8500 But that is the area that has to be protected. That is the area where the interference would occur.
8501 MR. EDWARDS: Wayne, could you describe for the Commissioners the process that you have to go through if you propose to short space an existing assignment?
8502 MR. STACEY: That is the thing. It is very easy to stand at a hearing like this and say glibly "This frequency would work" or "That frequency would work." As an engineer who does this all the time, I tell you, it is a lot harder when you are sitting at your office in front of your computer trying to figure out how exactly you can do it and come up with a proposal that will meet the rules, that will not cause undue interference with other stations, that will have an achievable antenna pattern that someone can actually build and deliver to you.
8503 And, thirdly -- although it may not be connected here, or it might be -- the question of interference to NAVCOM facilities, all of which has to be taken into account when you do this.
8504 It is also sometimes tempting for people to look, when they try to do drop-in frequencies, to see only what they have to protect, in other words, make sure they are not interfering with somebody else, but it is equally important to make sure they are not going to interfere with you. You have to look at it on a reciprocal basis.
8505 And there are many, many occasions when you could actually put a drop-in in a place, make it work in terms of protection to other stations, and then you discover that unfortunately the interference you have to accept from that other station is just totally unacceptable.
8506 So it is not something, in a very complicated case like this, that you can do very easily. It takes a lot of work and I daresay there is no one here who could guarantee to you that a frequency could be made to work and could be approved both domestically and internationally without sitting down and doing a great deal more work than I have seen done on this so far, including the work that I have done myself.
8507 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you.
8508 MR. EDWARDS: I have one other thing that I could add to, before we go, really quick.
8509 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay.
8510 MR. EDWARDS: First of all, I have copies of all this material to give you, but I would like to touch on one other point. This picks up on something that Wayne says, or appears to say.
--- Pause / Pause
8511 MR. EDWARDS: You can change the antenna set, and in fact I think that is what Mr. Elder was proposing at one point.
8512 THE CHAIRPERSON: The antenna pattern?
8513 MR. EDWARDS: The antenna pattern. You could make a simple statement that we can put in a directional antenna and that would solve all your problems. It wouldn't send any power that way.
8514 Well, antennas don't work that way. They are fairly accurate, but they are not surgical instruments.
8515 We already have a very good example of a directional antenna on Mount Seymour. Now, the ones that are receivable all the way up to Squamish, they are also directional antennas and they are all basically looking south. They are all -- or slightly southwest, but it is basically a half circle antenna, quite directional.
8516 But there is one antenna that is far more directional than even that, it just happens to be the CKVX-FM-2 antenna. The reason it had to be directional is because it is protecting the station at Sechelt.
8517 I will give this pattern to look at now, but it is included in the material I am going to give you.
8518 That pattern has an absolute null towards Bowen Island and it has a full null all the way in that arc between the two. In theory, it radiates nothing in that direction.
8519 Now, Industry Canada rules say that you can't assume anything more than a 20 DB difference, which is 100-to-1. That station is not receivable all the way up to Squamish, but it is receivable to Britannia Beach. In theory, though -- and I'm not saying it is good quality, I am saying the signal is there, and this is a co-channel signal we would be talking about again. That signal is available all the way to Britannia Beach and in theory there is no power going in that direction.
8520 So I guess, again saying what Wayne said and what I said before, the problem is the distance. There is just no buffer zone. Where you are normally looking at 240 kilometres, we have 40. That is a huge difference.
8521 I would be absolutely stunned if Industry Canada would even consider that. And that is the difficulty. We are sort of doing this backwards here. You are being asked to deal with things that are Industry Canada's responsibility.
8522 And it is very easy for somebody to come up who is looking for something else and say "Well, if you do that it will work just fine." We have to live with the results.
8523 So in a sense I have gone from applying for an Abbotsford licence to defending a Squamish licence. That is kind of an odd wrinkle, but so we have it.
8524 Thank you.
8525 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you
8526 One other thing I think I would like to do while I still have these technical people here, is, there has been discussion of a number of other possible frequencies, either 99.9 for Abbotsford, you know, some of the other FMs, and I just want to ask for your views on the possible use of any of these frequencies that have been asked.
8527 Have you done any studies and can you give us anything and enlighten us any more on other options for the CBC, any of the other applicants, in addition to what you have raised here?
8528 MR. MILES: We should be fair, by the way, to the use of 107.1 in Vancouver. I think it came about as a result of a natural error in what happened with a study that was commissioned.
8529 In that study it really did say that 107.1 and 106.9, by the way, could be used in Vancouver, but it said that the assignments are currently shown on the plan as TD or tentative deletions, therefore the licensee Rogers Broadcasting must have agreed to the deletions because they would have required replacements.
8530 Well, we had not agreed to the deletion and so, therefore, that sort of throws the whole thing out in terms of how those things could work.
8531 That study that I am referring to, which we will address more formally in our reply to the intervention, it also notes 88.1 or 88.3 would provide other viable alternatives, which is why we suggested that we were able to hopefully add to the broadcasting system for use of our facilities on Saturna Island at 88.1.
8532 For other frequencies in Abbotsford, it really does beg the question, which is: It is 107.1 in Abbotsford because that is the only one that we can work with and, if we don't, where are you going to put 107.1? Are you going to put it into Vancouver? That is the whole issue.
8533 So we thought we were actually doing a favour to the system.
8534 The two engineers who will speak to this one were ready to not receive any more of my phone calls when I said "You have to carve out something without bothering the rest of the broadcasters because there is a scarcity of frequency." This is what they did, they said "Well, we can come up with 107.1 because all the problems are our own."
8536 MR. STACEY: You asked the question, Madam Chair, particularly about 99.9, I believe.
8537 I would like to say first of all, though, that when we started this project we went through a very rigorous analysis of all 100 channels in the FM band for Abbotsford.
8538 As you will appreciate, we have a problem in the Lower Mainland which is not unique to Canada, but it certainly is one of the few areas where you are in a community adjacent to two larger metropolitan communities, particularly Vancouver and Victoria, but you are also adjacent to a very large American market in Seattle/Tacoma. These cities have already chewed up a great deal of the band. There is very little to work with.
8539 So I have to say that 107.1 was the best of the 100 that we looked at and that is, of course, why we put that forward as a proposal. It fit reasonably well with the AM service that we were looking to replace, the CFSR 850 service. Those maps have been tabled with the Commission and you can see how well it fits.
8540 One of the main advantages of that frequency, 107.1, is that it does not have to accept interference from other stations to any great degree. A few seconds ago I said that a lot of people lose sight of that when they do these analyses. They try to make a proposal that will protect other stations and they are not careful enough about the interference that they have to accept themselves from those other stations, and it is definitely not reciprocal.
8541 So what happens when you look at frequencies like 99.9 is you discover a couple of things.
8542 First of all, it is third adjacent to CFOX Vancouver, and in theory, according to the current rules of Industry Canada, you cannot assign a third adjacent channel inside the service area of an existing station without that station's concurrence.
8543 That rule may change, but to the best of my knowledge the direction the department is heading in that regard is to allow third adjacents to be used in the same market only when they are co-sited, not when there is a fairly large separation between them.
8544 THE CHAIRPERSON: Can I just --
8545 MR. STACEY: Yes.
8546 THE CHAIRPERSON: I'm sorry, I wouldn't normally do this.
8547 What does that mean exactly, that they are both on the tower at Mount Seymour for instance?
8548 MR. STACEY: Yes.
8549 MR. EDWARDS: Or at the very least on Mount Seymour.
8550 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay.
8551 MR. STACEY: With, let's say, a kilometre, half a kilometre or, better still, exactly on the same tower.
8552 Certainly any of the three sites on Mount Seymour would be considered co-sited as far as the department's rules are concerned. Besides, no one much lives up there so if there is a little bit of interference near the tower it doesn't really cause a problem.
8553 However, when you have a station like CFOX with a fairly large service area that extends into the Fraser Valley, they would have to concede on that point. They would have to waive their right under the current rules, or Industry Canada would have to make some determination to force that. Their tendency recently has not been to do that. They like broadcasters to work together on this.
8554 We saw no reason when we were looking at 99.1 to think that CFOX would necessarily accept that kind of an incursion into their territory and waive their right to protection.
8555 But I think what is even more important is that there is a great big barn-burner of a station in Seattle on that frequency, and Erin mentioned, I believe, 16 stations that come in from the United States, one of which would be this particular station I'm sure, CISW, and again it is co-channel interference. There is nothing you can do at your receiver to get rid of co-channel interference.
8556 That station is there, it is operating a full 100,000 watts with a very high antenna, and its interfering contour would pass to the north of the Abbotsford site, meaning that there would be a fairly significant area of interference that Abbotsford would have to accept were they to use that frequency.
8557 THE CHAIRPERSON: All right.
8558 Now, I am going to take advantage of us being here, unless everyone is being driven mad by this, but if I can just interrupt you there and ask: But what about 99.9? If in fact it was co-sited, could it be used by anybody else?
8559 For instance, we have had both AVR and Simon Fraser and other possible lower power --
8560 MR. EDWARDS: You are talking Mount Seymour now?
8561 THE CHAIRPERSON: Whatever. Maybe what I should do is not be so specific and just say: Of all the frequencies that have been discussed and all the various locations that have been talked about, together with any others that we may not know about given that we have something like 11 applications, do you know of any other -- any options that haven't been explored that may be solutions to any of these.
8562 MR. STACEY: Perhaps we could talk about 88.1, which was mentioned earlier.
8563 Again, because that channel is very close to channel 6 television, we are in a situation where it really has to be co-sited. Co-siting means putting it on Saturna Island.
8564 I have looked at that channel. It is a Class C allotment, appears to be unlimited. The only restriction technically to it seems to be that you would have to crank the power down a little bit from normal in order to make it compatible with CHEK-TV.
8565 It looks to me as if from Saturna Island, with the very high antenna there, that you could probably operate in the order of 10,000 watts, which towards Vancouver would certainly put the protective contour well up past North Vancouver.
8566 So without commenting on who might be a suitable candidate for that, it certainly looks like a channel that should not be overlooked in terms of something that can serve the whole area.
8567 Steve has a comment.
8568 MR. EDWARDS: I have two comments. One is just following up on that.
8569 It also provides quite excellent coverage of Victoria in terms of where the contour would go.
8570 But Erin gave me something that illustrates a good point of why it is kind of helpful to think about the other broadcaster.
8571 In Abbotsford, going back to 1999 for a moment, the transmitter site that we are proposing to use is the one that we already used for XFM. It is right in the middle of a suburb. The tower was there first and the houses have come up right around it. It is on a hill. It is right there.
8572 This is not the same sort of situation as the Nanaimo application, which is also third adjacent to a Vancouver station. In that case it is across water so it is out of the formal market of the station and the transmitter site is in a relatively isolated location, so the number of people that would be affected -- what happens here is you put a bullet hole of interference around that transmitter site, the secondary one, either in this case Nanaimo or Abbotsford.
8573 In this case the bullet hole would encompass a goodly number of homes and streets. In the Nanaimo case I'm not sure how many, but it probably wasn't very many.
8574 The difference again is, this is not across the water in somebody else's market. This is in CFOX's market. Their share of tuning in Abbotsford is 10 per cent. Do you really think that they are going to agree out of the kindness of their heart to give up the coverage that they have in that area?
8575 Again, you can't do these things in isolation and just ignore other broadcasters.
8576 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you.
8577 I don't know if any -- Commissioner Cardozo.
8578 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I just wanted to understand a little more about the offer you have made with regards to 850 AM.
8579 The reason you are offering that is because we have talked about if you licence one of them on what they had applied for the other was 107.1, and you have offered to cover the operating expenses for seven years. What would be the expenses for them over and above that?
8580 MR. MILES: When I say "expenses" I am talking about the transmitter operating expenses.
8581 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Right.
--- Laughter / Rires
8582 MR. MILES: I'm not -- even though they looked like they didn't work for very much money --
--- Laughter / Rires
8583 MR. MILES: But I believe that the -- here is the figure that I will propose. We will cover the operating expenses up to $50,000 a year for seven years for them.
8584 I think in there, because remember the application for their FM was actually going to be --
8585 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: That is $50,000 a year?
8586 MR. MILES: For seven years.
8587 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Yes.
8588 MR. MILES: Their application, their FM -- if we are talking about Simon Fraser, and that is the one that I was here for, they were going to put the transmitter site right above their studios. Now, they would have to get the signal down to the transmitter site from Simon Fraser.
8589 I think in that $50,000 there is enough room in there to help reduce their costs of getting that transmission done.
8590 Your question was: What additional expenses would they have to have?
8591 They would have to get the signal from their studios down to the 850 AM site. I think in the figure that I just quoted, there is enough give in there, unless the power gas prices go up the way they continue to go up, and they might, it is maybe $10,000 to $15,000 additional.
8592 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay. The reason I ask is, there was another offer --
8593 MR. MILES: Sure.
8594 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: -- on another frequency and the additional costs ended up being quite large on a different --
8595 MR. MILES: Look, I think it costs you somewhere in the -- our experience has been it costs us in the neighbourhood of about $35,000 to $45,000 to operate AM transmitter sites. It doesn't make much difference whether they are in Abbotsford, Smiths Falls, Victoria. It is around about what the cost of power is, and things like that.
8596 The beautiful thing about the equipment these days is it is such solid state stuff that it is usually very reliable and you don't have those kinds of problems.
8597 MR. EDWARDS: To add a little bit more to that, there is a significant difference between the proposal that CHUM made, which I was really pleased about because we hadn't thought of that and it is a great way that both of us could contribute.
8598 The difference in that case, though, is that they would have to build a brand new facility adding onto their site, and that is expensive. It could bring with it further operating costs.
8599 In this case, it is an existing site so the cost would --
8600 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And compared to having an FM frequency, what is the difference in --
8601 MR. EDWARDS: The main difference is it would be mono.
8602 But Wayne could speak to the coverage that you could expect.
8603 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: The expenditure part of it though.
8604 MR. EDWARDS: Oh, I'm sorry.
8605 The Abbotsford site is a 10 kilowatt transmitter and power costs compared to a -- well, if they were on -- in the City of Vancouver they would probably be talking about a very low power transmitter, 500 watts or something like that, and the costs would be quite low there.
8606 For an 18 kilowatt -- I'm sorry, a 10 kilowatt transmitter, the power cost would be perhaps something in the order of $12,000, $15,000 a year.
8607 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And 850 AM covers how much of Vancouver?
8608 MR. EDWARDS: Wayne, could you deal with that?
8609 MR. STACEY: Well, dealing here with a 10,000 watt day and night station utilizing four towers with a directional pattern that more or less squirts towards Vancouver, I would say that the map that I have here that originated from Industry Canada certainly shows the protected service going over Vancouver.
8610 That being said, though, I don't have the night interference-free service area, and it is possible that that probably is reduced.
8611 But, nevertheless, you can see from the map that was filed with the Abbotsford application, that the 5 millivolt contour certainly creeps up on Vancouver, which is a fairly substantial service for an AM station, and you would have additional coverage probably over most of Vancouver, but at a lesser signal level.
8612 I can't really be much more definitive than that, without precise maps. But they are available. The Commission has these available as well, both day and night, to see what the AM service would provide.
--- Pause / Pause
8613 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thank you very much.
8614 THE CHAIRPERSON: I just want to check to make sure Mr. Lubienski has everything he needs.
8615 No more questions? Okay.
8616 MR. MILES: We will stay all day if you want.
8617 THE CHAIRPERSON: No, no, it's okay. I think we are finished.
8618 Thank you very much. We appreciate your coming in.
8619 This concludes phase -- oh, I guess I don't say those words before I read.
8620 We are drawing to the conclusion of Phase I, and I would like to say for the record that we have heard some revisions to some of the applications and these will be taken under advisement by the panel.
8621 Any party can comment or object in the course of the intervention phase.
8622 This concludes Phase I.
8623 I will repeat this at the commencement of Phase II, which is nine o'clock on Tuesday morning.
8624 Thank you.
--- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1530, to resume
on Monday, November 27, 2000 at 0900 / L'audience
est ajournée à 1530, pour reprendre le lundi
27 novembre 2000 à 0900