Broadcasting - Commission Letter addressed to Ted Woodhead (Rogers Communications inc.)
Ottawa, 17 December 2021
Our reference: 1011-NOC2021-0281
Senior Vice-President, Regulatory
Rogers Communications Inc.
333 Bloor Street East, 10th Floor
Toronto ON M4W 1G9
Re: Application 2021-0228-4 – Application by Rogers Communications Inc. (Rogers), on behalf of Shaw Communications Inc. (Shaw), for Rogers to acquire all of the issued and outstanding shares of Shaw
This letter concerns a procedural request submitted on 14 December 2021 by Rogers Communications Inc. (Rogers) following the filing of the Independent Broadcasters Group’s (IBG) final submission on 13 December 2021.
In its procedural request, Rogers objected to IBG’s final submission, arguing that it failed to comply with requirements set out in Broadcasting Notice of Consultation 2021-281-1. Specifically, Rogers submitted that IBG’s final submission exceeded 10 pages and included new evidence. Should the Commission accept IBG’s final submission in its current form and place it on the public record, Rogers indicated that it would experience prejudice. Rogers argued that accepting IBG’s final submission in its current form would not contribute to the public interest at this stage of the proceeding.
In its 15 December 2021 reply to Rogers’ procedural request, IBG indicated that it believed that the 10 page limit was a guideline and that any new evidence it had provided was in direct response to information requested by the Commission. IBG further stated that it does not accept that Rogers would experience prejudice if the Commission were to accept its final submission. Finally, IBG argued that its final submission is in the public interest, but indicated that it would be willing to delete the cover letter and Appendices B and C to reduce the size of its final submission.
Finally, on 16 December 2021, Rogers objected to IBG’s revised final submission dated 15 December 2021, arguing that the remaining appendices provide additional support for evidence and arguments included within its final submission and that the submission as a whole should be limited to 10 pages, as prescribed by the Commission. As such, Rogers stated that IBG’s final submission should include only the cover letter and final submission document, as well as the table of contents. Rogers further stated that the failure to require IBG to respect its published procedural requirements would be unfair to Rogers and to every other party that complied with the Commission’s requirements regarding the length, content and deadline of final submissions.
As set out in Broadcasting Notice of Consultation 2021-281-1, final written submissions and replies should not exceed 10 pages, and parties cannot submit new evidence in their final submissions and replies, with the exception of any information requested by the Commission. The Commission notes that as part of its final submission, IBG filed a cover letter, a final submission and four appendices, the combination of which exceeded 10 pages.
In light of the above, the Commission approves the request by Rogers for the Commission to require IBG to limit its final submission to 10 pages and to not include any appendices. Consequently, the four appendices provided by IBG in its 13 December 2021 final submission no longer form part of the public record.
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