ARCHIVED -  Decision CRTC 99-97

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Ottawa, 7 May 1999
Decision CRTC 99-97
A. Cogeco Cable Systems Inc.
Bath and Millhaven; Colchester; Courtright/Mooretown; Douglastown; Harrow; McGregor/Paquette Corner; Oil City; Puce; Smithville; and Wheatley, Ontario - 199811253 - 199811310 - 199811295 - 199811279 - 199900908 - 199811328 - 199811287 - 199811336 - 199811261 - 199811303B.Alexandria; Alfred/Plantagenet; Bourget/Clarence Creek; Limoges; Maxville and St-Isidore-de-Prescott, Ontario - 199811204 - 199811196 - 199811211 - 199811229 - 199811237 - 199811245
26 March 1999 Public Hearing
National Capital Region
Acquisition of assets
1. The Commission approves the applications by Cogeco Cable Systems Inc. (Cogeco) for authority to acquire the assets of the cable distribution undertakings serving the communities noted in A above from Regional Cablesystems Inc. (Regional) and for broadcasting licences to continue the operation of these undertakings.
2. The Commission will issue Class 3 licences to Cogeco for the undertakings serving the communities listed in A above, upon surrender of the current licences. Each licence will expire on the current expiry date: 31 August 2001 for the undertakings serving Colchester, Douglastown, Harrow, McGregor/Paquette Corner, Oil City, Puce and Wheatley; 31 August 2002 for the undertakings serving Courtright/Mooretown and Smithville; and 31 August 2005 for the undertaking serving Bath and Millhaven.
3. The Commission also approves the applications by Regional for authority to acquire the assets of the cable distribution undertakings serving the communities noted in B above from Cogeco and for broadcasting licences to continue the operation of these undertakings.
4. The Commission will issue Class 3 licences to Regional for the undertakings serving the communities listed in B above, expiring 31 August 2005 (the current expiry date), upon surrender of the current licences.
5. The operation of all these undertakings will be regulated pursuant to Parts 1 and 3 the Broadcasting Distribution Regulations. The authority granted herein is subject to the conditions specified in this decision and to any other conditions that may be specified in the licences to be issued.
6. The Regional systems to be acquired by Cogeco serve approximately 2,300 basic cable subscribers, whereas the Cogeco systems to be acquired by Regional serve some 3,500 basic cable subscribers. In addition to the consideration resulting from the exchange, Regional will pay $1.4 million to Cogeco. Based on the evidence filed with the applications, the Commission has no concerns with respect to the availability or the adequacy of the required financing.
7. Cogeco and Regional agreed to exchange these cable systems as a means of rationalizing and clustering their respective cable properties. They claimed that these transactions will strengthen the systems to be exchanged and will, therefore, benefit their subscribers.
8. The Commission reminds the purchasers of its longstanding policy that subscribers should not be required to pay higher fees merely because the ownership or control of a cable television system has changed hands.
9. The licensees may receive any authorized signals over the air, or from any licensed or exempted Canadian broadcasting distribution undertaking authorized to provide signals to other broadcasting distribution undertakings.
10. It is a condition of each licence that, for community programming and any other programming of a service that it originates, the licensee adhere to the guidelines on the depiction of violence in television programming set out in the Canadian Association of Broadcasters' Voluntary Code Regarding Violence in Television Programming, as amended from time to time and approved by the Commission.
11. 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 Regional to consider employment equity issues in its hiring practices and in all other aspects of its management of human resources.
12. The Commission notes that Cogeco is subject to the Employment Equity Act that came into effect on 24 October 1996 (1996 EEA), and therefore files reports concerning employment equity with Human Resources Development Canada. As a result of a consequential amendment to the Broadcasting Act, the Commission no longer has the authority to apply its employment equity policy to any undertaking that is subject to the 1996 EEA.
13. The Commission acknowledges the petition with 162 signatories submitted in support of these applications.
Secretary General
This decision is to be appended to each licence.
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