ARCHIVED -  Decision CRTC 99-539

This page has been archived on the Web

Information identified as archived on the Web is for reference, research or recordkeeping purposes. Archived Decisions, Notices and Orders (DNOs) remain in effect except to the extent they are amended or reversed by the Commission, a court, or the government. The text of archived information has not been altered or updated after the date of archiving. Changes to DNOs are published as “dashes” to the original DNO number. Web pages that are archived on the Web are not subject to the Government of Canada Web Standards. As per the Communications Policy of the Government of Canada, you can request alternate formats by contacting us.


Decision CRTC 99-539

  Ottawa, 13 December 1999
  Wesley United Church Radio Board
St. John’s, Newfoundland – 199901418
  28 June 1999 Public Hearing
National Capital Region
  Licence renewal for VOWR
  1. The Commission renews the broadcasting licence for VOWR St. John’s from 1 March 2000 to 31 August 2001, subject to the conditions specified in the licence to be issued.
  2. The Commission has renewed the licence for eighteen months because it wishes to assess at an earlier date the licensee’s compliance with the Radio Regulations, 1986 (the regulations). The serious concerns giving rise to this short term are discussed below.
  3. The Commission last renewed the licence for VOWR for a term of four years in Decision CRTC 95-325. This short-term renewal was the result of a shortfall in the level of Canadian musical selections in category 2 and category 3 broadcast by VOWR during the week of 29 May to 4 June 1994. The decision indicated that the Commission would assess the licensee’s compliance with the regulations over this four-year period.
  4. Section 8 of the regulations requires licensees to retain for a period of up to four weeks from the date of broadcast, and to furnish to the Commission upon request, "a clear and intelligible tape recording or other exact copy of all matter broadcast." On 29 July 1997, the Commission requested logger tapes and other material related to the programming broadcast by VOWR during the week of 20 to 26 July 1997. The tape submitted for the Sunday of the week in question was, however, completely unintelligible. In a letter dated 6 April 1998, the licensee explained that a volunteer had incorrectly loaded the tape on the logging machine. To address the problem, the licensee indicated that it had attached special instructions to each tape box to help ensure that tapes were loaded correctly in the future.
  5. Since it had found the licensee to be in non-compliance with the regulations during two consecutive licence terms, the Commission, in Notice of Public Hearing CRTC 1999-5 dated 30 April 1999, called the licensee to appear at a hearing to be held 28 June 1999. The licensee was also advised that it would be expected to show cause why the Commission should not issue a mandatory order requiring compliance with regulatory requirements relating to logger tapes.
  6. If the Commission were to issue a mandatory order and the licensee failed to comply with the requirements mentioned therein, the Commission could provide evidence of such failure to the Federal Court. The licensee would then be required to appear before the Federal Court on a charge of contempt of court. If the licensee were found guilty, it would be liable to a fine as provided for by the Federal Court Rules.
  The hearing
  7. Mr. John Tessier, General Manager of VOWR, appeared at the hearing. He outlined a number, of steps that the licensee had taken to ensure compliance with the requirements of the regulations relating to logger tapes.
  8. Among other things, the licensee has purchased new reel-to-reel tapes for its primary logging system. Further, it has ordered a second logger that will start automatically if the primary unit develops a recording problem. In addition, an audible alarm will sound to alert on-duty staff that a problem exists. The licensee is also investigating the possibility of ordering a computer-based logging system to replace the current system.
  9. Mr. Tessier has also conducted training sessions about CRTC logging requirements for volunteers.
  10. The Commission is satisfied with the measures taken by the licensee. It considers that VOWR has demonstrated a firm commitment to comply with the regulations including, in particular, section 8 in the future. The Commission therefore considers that it is not necessary to impose a mandatory order. It does, however, consider that a short term renewal of 18 months is appropriate in light of the repeated compliance problems that the licensee has experienced. The Commission will monitor closely VOWR’s performance, and places the licensee on notice that if it determines that VOWR has again failed to comply with section 8 of the regulations, it may take any enforcement measures available to it under the Broadcasting Act.
  Other matters
  11. It is a condition of licence that the licensee adhere to the guidelines on gender portrayal set out in the Canadian Association of Broadcasters' (CAB) Sex-Role Portrayal Code for Television and Radio Programming, as amended from time to time and approved by the Commission.
  12. It is a condition of licence that the licensee adhere to the provisions of the CAB's Broadcast Code for Advertising to Children, as amended from time to time and approved by the Commission.
  13. In Public Notice CRTC 1992-59 dated 1 September 1992 and entitled Implementation of an Employment Equity Policy, the Commission announced that the employment equity practices of broadcasters would be subject to examination by the Commission. In this regard, the Commission encourages the licensee to consider employment equity issues in its hiring practices and in all other aspects of its management of human resources.
  Secretary General
  This decision is to be appended to the licence. It is available in alternative format upon request, and may also be viewed at the following Internet site:
Date modified: