ARCHIVED - Broadcasting Notice of Public Hearing CRTC 2004-7

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Broadcasting Notice of Public Hearing CRTC 2004-7


See also : 2004-7-1

Ottawa, 9 July 2004

  The Commission will hold a public hearing following the conclusion of the public hearing commencing on 7 September 2004 announced in Broadcasting Notice of Public Hearing CRTC 2004-5, at the Conference Centre, Portage IV, 140 Promenade du Portage, Gatineau, Quebec, to consider the following:
  Star Choice Television Network Incorporated (Star Choice) is the licensee of a national, direct-to-home broadcasting distribution undertaking. On 1 May 2003, pursuant to subsection 12(2) of the Broadcasting Distribution Regulations (the Regulations), Star Choice (through its parent company Star Choice Communications Inc.) requested that the Commission resolve a dispute between Star Choice and MusiquePlus Inc. MusiquePlus Inc. is the licensee of two French-language specialty services, namely MusiMax and MusiquePlus. The dispute concerned the wholesale rate payments owed and payable by Star Choice to MusiquePlus Inc. for the distribution of these services, in both the Quebec market and the market in the rest of Canada, between 31 July 2001 and 31 August 2003, and between 1 September 2003 and 31 August 2006.
  The Commission proceeded to deal with this matter by way of a confidential final offer selection process, as described in Access rules for broadcasting distribution undertakings, Public Notice CRTC 1996-60, 26 April 1996 and in Practices and procedures for resolving competitive and access disputes, Public Notice CRTC 2000-65, 12 May 2000. In accordance with this process, both Star Choice and MusiquePlus Inc. were requested to submit final offers accompanied by supporting rationales. On 23 December 2003, the Commission selected the final offer that had been submitted by MusiquePlus Inc. Although the final offer by MusiquePlus Inc. had reflected a starting date of 1 September 2000 for the wholesale rate repayments, the Commission determined that the starting date would be 31 July 2001, that date marking the beginning of the historical period for which the Commission's determination had been sought. The Commission's decision was conveyed to the parties in a confidential letter decision.
  On 26 April 2004, the Commission received a letter from MusiquePlus Inc. alleging that Star Choice had failed to pay wholesale fees to MusiquePlus Inc. in accordance with the Commission's decision. MusiquePlus Inc. requested that the Commission issue a mandatory order to Star Choice, pursuant to subsection 12(2) of the Broadcasting Act (the Act), requiring Star Choice to comply with the Commission's decision. In a subsequent letter dated 14 May 2004, MusiquePlus Inc. indicated that, as of February 2004, Star Choice was in arrears by a total amount of $1,121,373.21.
  In a letter dated 30 April 2004, Star Choice was asked to inform the Commission whether it was in compliance with the Commission's decision. In its reply letter dated 7 May 2004, Star Choice indicated its wish to continue to negotiate with MusiquePlus Inc. on this and related matters and that, in the interim, it would adjust its payments going forward to reflect the Commission's decision.
  Mandatory order
  The Commission notes that the requirements set out in its decision covered both of the periods 31 July 2001 to 31 August 2003, and 1 September 2003 to 31 August 2006. The Commission is satisfied that the requirements were clear and does not regard Star Choice's letter of 7 May 2004 as responsive to the Commission's letter of 30 April 2004. The Commission thus considers it appropriate to proceed to a mandatory order hearing immediately.
  Accordingly, pursuant to section 12 of the Act, the Commission requires Star Choice to appear at a public hearing following the conclusion of the 7 September 2004 public hearing, at the Conference Centre, Portage IV, 140 Promenade du Portage, Gatineau, Quebec, to show cause why a mandatory order requiring it to comply with section 15 of the Regulations and, more particularly, with the Commission's letter decision dated 23 December 2003, should not be issued.
  Call for comments - Three phase process
  In order to gather additional information with respect to this matter in advance of the hearing and to co-ordinate the Commission's efforts efficiently, the Commission's public process will proceed as set out below.
  Phase 1
  Star Choice may file no later than 23 July 2004 any documentation and argument it believes pertinent to the issuance of a mandatory order requiring it to comply with section 15 of the Regulations and, more particularly, with the Commission's letter decision dated 23 December 2003.
  Once received, the above information will be placed on the public file to permit all parties to comment.
  Phase 2
  MusiquePlus Inc. and the public may provide written comments concerning the issuance of a mandatory order. Interested parties have until 3 August 2004 to file their comments and to send a copy of their submissions to Star Choice at the address below. The complete process for filing comments is outlined at the end of this notice.
  Phase 3
  Star Choice will have until 10 August 2004 to reply to the comments filed in Phase 2 of this proceeding.
  Procedure for filing comments
  Interested parties can file their comments with the Secretary General of the Commission using only one of the following formats:

[Interventions/comments form]
available from the Commission's web site by indicating and selecting the notice of public hearing




by electronic mail to




by mail at
CRTC, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0N2




by fax to the
Secretary General - (819) 994-0218

  Your comment must also include one of the following statements in either the first or the last paragraph:
  1 - I want to appear at the public hearing.
2 - I do not want to appear at the public hearing.
3 - I will appear at the public hearing if requested by the Commission.
  Your comments will be considered by the Commission, and will form part of the public record of the proceeding without further notification to you, provided the procedure set out below has been followed. You will be contacted only if your submission raises procedural questions or if your appearance is requested at the hearing.
  A true copy must be sent to Star Choice and proof that this has been done must accompany the comments sent to the Commission.

Star Choice Network Incorporated
440 Laurier Avenue West
Suite 200
Ottawa, Ontario
K1R 7X6
  Submissions longer than five pages should include a summary.
  Please number each paragraph of your submission. In addition, where the document is filed electronically, please enter the line ***End of document*** following the last paragraph. This will help the Commission verify that the document has not been damaged during transmission.
  If you wish to appear, you must provide reasons why your written comments are not sufficient and why an appearance is necessary.
  Persons requiring communications support such as assistance listening devices and sign language interpretation are requested to inform the Commission at least twenty (20) days before the commencement of the public hearing so that the necessary arrangements can be made.

All information submitted, including your email address, name and any other personal information as provided, will be posted on the Commission's web-site. Documents received in electronic format will be posted on the Commission's web site exactly as you send them, and in the official language and format in which they are received. Documents not received electronically will be available in .pdf format.
  Examination of documents
  Electronic versions of the public file and the submissions of Star Choice and MusiquePlus Inc. are available on the Commission's web site at
  A list of all comments will also be available on the Commission's web site. An electronic version of all comments submitted will be accessible from this list. To access the list, select "Lists of interventions/comments" under "Public Proceedings" from the Commission's web site.
  Documents are also available during normal office hours at the local address provided in this notice and at the Commission offices and documentation centres directly involved with this process or, upon request, within 2 working days, at any other CRTC offices and documentation centres.
  Central Building
Les Terrasses de la Chaudière
1 Promenade du Portage, Room 206
Gatineau, Quebec K1A 0N2
Tel: (819) 997-2429 - TDD: 994-0423
FAX: (819) 994-0218
  Metropolitan Place
99 Wyse Road, Suite 1410
Dartmouth, Nova Scotia B3A 4S5
Tel: (902) 426-7997 - TDD: 426-6997
FAX: (902) 426-2721
  405 de Maisonneuve Boulevard East
2nd Floor, Suite B2300
Montréal, Quebec H2L 4J5
Tel: (514) 283-6607
FAX: (514) 283-3689
  55 St. Clair Avenue East, Suite 624
Toronto, Ontario M4T 1M2
Tel: (416) 952-9096
FAX: (416) 954-6343
  Kensington Building
275 Portage Avenue, Suite 1810
Winnipeg, Manitoba R3B 2B3
Tel: (204) 983-6306 - TDD: 983-8274
FAX: (204) 983-6317
  Cornwall Professional Building
2125 - 11th Avenue, Room 103
Regina, Saskatchewan S4P 3X3
Tel: (306) 780-3422
FAX: (306) 780-3319
  10405 Jasper Avenue, Suite 520
Edmonton, Alberta T5J 3N4
Tel: (780) 495-3224
FAX: (780) 495-3214
  530-580 Hornby Street
Vancouver, British Columbia V6C 3B6
Tel: (604) 666-2111 - TDD: 666-0778
FAX: (604) 666-8322
  This document is available in alternative format upon request and may also be examined at the following Internet site:
  Secretary General

Date Modified: 2004-07-09

Date modified: