ARCHIVED -  Decision CRTC 99-173

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Ottawa, 15 July 1999

Decision CRTC 99-173

Community Communications Ltd.

Surrey, British Columbia - 199801072

3 May 1999 Public Hearing
in Vancouver

Proposed new specialty FM station at Surrey - denied

1.  The Commission denies the application by Community Communications Ltd. for a broadcasting licence to carry on an English-language low power (27 watts) specialty FM radio station at Surrey. The applicant had proposed to offer a "news/talk" service with a minimum of 80% of the broadcast week devoted to spoken word programming.

2.  The applicant requested a licence to operate a radio station in a major metropolitan area. It projected that it would generate $6.5 million in revenues in the first year of operation. However, the applicant did not provide sufficiently detailed assumptions to support its audience projections and corresponding revenue streams. Accordingly, the Commission is not convinced as to the reasonableness of this key component of the applicant's proposed business plan.

3.  The Commission also finds that the applicant did not provide sufficient details on the programming that the proposed station would offer. Furthermore, both in its written application and in responding to questioning at the hearing, the applicant failed to demonstrate an understanding of the Commission's regulations and policies which would allow it to conclude that the proposed undertaking would likely be operated in conformity with them. This lack of understanding extended, for example, to the Policy Regarding Open-Line Programming set out in Public Notice CRTC 1988-213. The Commission considers an understanding of this policy on the part of the applicant to be particularly critical in view of the fact that it proposed to offer a news/talk format that would include open-line programming.

4.  CJJR-FM/CKBD-AM and the Jim Pattison Broadcast Group (Jim Pattison), CKNW, a division of WIC Radio Ltd. (CKNW), and CFUN/CHQM-FM, division of CHUM Limited (CHUM) submitted interventions opposing this application. Among other concerns, Jim Pattison and CKNW argued that the applicant's business plan was unrealistic. CHUM claimed that the applicant's financial projections were "overly optimistic" and that it had not demonstrated a demand for the proposed service. The Commission has noted the applicant's response to the interventions at the hearing. However, in light of the above, the Commission considers that approval of this application would not be in the public interest.

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Secretary General

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