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TRANSCRIPT OF PROCEEDINGS BEFORE
THE CANADIAN RADIO‑TELEVISION AND
TRANSCRIPTION DES AUDIENCES AVANT
CONSEIL DE LA RADIODIFFUSION
ET DES TÉLÉCOMMUNICATIONS CANADIENNES
VARIOUS BROADCAST APPLICATIONS /
PLUSIEURS DEMANDES EN RADIODIFFUSION
HELD AT: TENUE À:
Delta Regina Delta Regina
1919 Saskatchewan Drive 1919, promenade Saskatchewan
Regina, Saskatchewan Regina, Saskatchewan
November 1, 2006 le 1 novembre 2006
In order to meet the requirements of the Official Languages
Act, transcripts of proceedings before the Commission will be
bilingual as to their covers, the listing of the CRTC members
and staff attending the public hearings, and the Table of
However, the aforementioned publication is the recorded
verbatim transcript and, as such, is taped and transcribed in
either of the official languages, depending on the language
spoken by the participant at the public hearing.
Afin de rencontrer les exigences de la Loi sur les langues
officielles, les procès‑verbaux pour le Conseil seront
bilingues en ce qui a trait à la page couverture, la liste des
membres et du personnel du CRTC participant à l'audience
publique ainsi que la table des matières.
Toutefois, la publication susmentionnée est un compte rendu
textuel des délibérations et, en tant que tel, est enregistrée
et transcrite dans l'une ou l'autre des deux langues
officielles, compte tenu de la langue utilisée par le
participant à l'audience publique.
Canadian Radio‑television and
Conseil de la radiodiffusion et des
Transcript / Transcription
VARIOUS BROADCAST APPLICATIONS /
PLUSIEURS DEMANDES EN RADIODIFFUSION
BEFORE / DEVANT:
Barbara Cram Chairperson / Présidente
Michel Arpin Vice-Chair, Broadcasting / Vice‑président, radiodiffusion
Rita Cugini Commissioner / Conseillère
Ronald Williams Commissioner / Conseiller
Joan Pennefather Commissioner / Conseillère
ALSO PRESENT / AUSSI PRÉSENTS:
Chantal Boulet Secretary / Secrétaire
Leanne Bennett Legal Counsel /
Lyne Cape Hearing Manager /
Gérante de l'audience
HELD AT: TENUE À:
Delta Regina Delta Regina
1919 Saskatchewan Drive 1919, promenade Saskatchewan
Regina, Saskatchewan Regina, Saskatchewan
November 1, 2006 le 1 novembre 2006
- iv -
TABLE DES MATIÈRES / TABLE OF CONTENTS
PAGE / PARA
REGINA - PHASE I
PRESENTATION BY / PRÉSENTATION PAR:
Aboriginal Voices Radio Inc. (AVR) 764 / 3743
Natotawin Broadcasting Inc. 857 / 4245
REGINA - PHASE II
PRESENTATION BY / PRÉSENTATION PAR:
REGINA - PHASE III
PRESENTATION BY / PRÉSENTATION PAR:
Rawlco Radio Ltd. 915 / 4596
Communications Management Inc. 927 / 4655
Hospitals of Regina Foundations Inc. 971 / 4889
Paul Martin Communications 975 / 4913
Neil Meckelborg 987 / 4979
MapleMusic & Open Road Recordings 998 / 5034
The Good Brothers 1003 / 5057
The Poverty Plainsmen 1005 / 5067
Birdsong Communications 1007 / 5074
Jennifer Jade Kerr 1021 / 5149
Zbitnew and Associates 1030 / 5186
Lighthouse To All Nations 1036 / 5208
Shelan Schnell 1042 / 5231
Regina Evangelical Ministerial Association 1046 / 5248
Harvard Broadcasting Inc. 1052 / 5277
- v -
TABLE DES MATIÈRES / TABLE OF CONTENTS
PAGE / PARA
REGINA - PHASE IV
PRESENTATION BY / PRÉSENTATION PAR:
Aboriginal Voices Radio Inc. 1067 / 5368
Radio CJVR Ltd. 1068 / 5374
Touch Canada Broadcasting Inc. 1069 / 5381
Standard Radio Inc. 1073 / 5403
Newcap Inc. 1082 / 5459
SASKATOON - PHASE I
PRESENTATION BY / PRÉSENTATION PAR:
Newcap Inc. 1090 / 5494
‑‑‑ Upon commencing on Wednesday, November 1, 2006
at 0830 / L'audience débute le mercredi
1 novembre 2006 à 0830
3735 THE CHAIRPERSON: Order please.
3736 Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. Today of course is day one of Gainer‑Gate. Gainer has been punted from McMahon Stadium. The province is in shock and awe.
‑‑‑ Laughter / Rires
3737 THE CHAIRPERSON: As you know, of course ‑‑ and I'll give you non‑CFL speak ‑‑ the Roughriders' mascot, Gainer the Gopher has been expelled for the play‑off game this weekend. The province is just aghast.
3738 Nonetheless, I'll pass it over to Madam Secretary.
3739 THE SECRETARY: Thank you, Madam Chair.
morning everyone. We will now proceed
with item 15 on the agenda which is an application by Aboriginal Voices Radio
Inc., AVR, for a licence to operate an English and Aboriginal‑language
Native type B FM radio undertaking in
3741 The new station would operate on frequency 96.1 megahertz, channel 241C, with an effective radiated power of 100,000 watts, non‑directional antenna, antenna height of 146.2 metres.
3742 Appearing for the applicant is Mr. Lewis Cardinal who will introduce his colleagues. You will then have 20 minutes for your presentation. Please go ahead ‑‑ Mr. Hill will introduce his colleagues. My apologies.
PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION
3743 MR. HILL: Thank you.
3744 I'd like to say good morning to everyone. It's very nice to be here before you today. Chair, Members of the Commission, Commission staff, colleagues and broadcasters and ladies and gentlemen, my name is Jamie Hill. I'm the president of the Aboriginal Voices Radio Inc.
are particularly excited about your appearance before the Commission today in
support of our application for a new radio service for the historic city of
your far right is Lewis Cardinal, the vice president of AVR. Lewis is an Aboriginal relations consultant
to the City of
3747 As well, Lewis is a recent recipient of the Alberta Centennial Medal for his work in diversity, multiculturalism, and human rights and is this year being honoured with the National Aboriginal Achievement Award for Community Service.
Lewis is J. Robert Wood, AVR's management consultant. Bob has provided management consulting
services for some of
3749 Prior to that, he spent 17 years in the CHUM Group as national program director and manager of CHUM and CHUM‑FM. He led the CHUM team in the establishment of FACTOR and was one of the first broadcasters inducted into the Canadian Music Industry Hall of Fame.
my right is Roy Hennessy, AVR's general manager.
is also very active in her community as vice president of the board for the
Native Women's Resource Centre in
3753 And on your far left is Grant Buchanan of McCarthy Tetrault LLP, our legal counsel.
for myself, in addition to serving as president of AVR, I am a co‑founder
of Knapp Media Inc. We publish a
magazine, the Smithsonian's
I served as communications and information systems analyst for the chiefs of
would like to acknowledge the Saulteaux, Cree and
also want to recognize the Metis people as well as the kind people of
3758 I would now like to begin our formal presentation. The board of directors of AVR and I, are of one mind, that the building of a national network of radio stations that brings together the hopes and dreams of Aboriginal people is a necessity.
3759 We know that the Commission has heard from AVR many times on this subject and that the Commission has granted AVR a licence on each occasion that it has been requested.
know you have agreed with AVR's vision in the past and we respectfully ask that
you do so again here in
3761 We are in the midst of creating the first national Aboriginal radio network in the world. The Canadian Broadcasting system has the resources to allow this to occur and the Broadcasting Act says that when that moment arrives, service should be extended.
3762 As you know, AVR has a unique profile. It is a national service with a national network licence, but it has a much bigger role to fill as the plan is to offer local service in many Canadian urban centres.
3763 The national network acts as a badly needed bridge from one Aboriginal community to another and allows for discourse, healing and the exchange of stories and events between Aboriginal people across the country.
is essential that the Aboriginal community here in
3765 In the 2001 Statistics Canada Aboriginal people survey there were 9,880 North American Indians and 4,110 Metis people. The current national trend of migration of Aboriginal people to urban areas is a fast rising ‑‑ and a fast rising birth rate dictates an expected population surge in Regina now and in the future with some demographers predicting up to 50 percent First Nations population in Saskatchewan within a few generations.
CARDINAL: There are 12 radio stations on
is difficult for me to contemplate a national Aboriginal service like AVR
3768 A research report conducted for AVR by Peter Doering Consultants in November of 1999, that survey of Canadians revealed a number of compelling statistics. Canadians from coast to coast overwhelmingly approve of an Aboriginal national radio service.
the respondents from the City of
goal, provide exposure and support appreciation for Aboriginal culture. Ninety‑seven percent of
3771 AVR is concerned about the great possibility of many Aboriginal languages becoming extinct. There are between 53 and 70 known Aboriginal languages, but many are only used by elders and will die with them.
3772 In addition to the promotion of Aboriginal Canadian languages in the English language portion of this schedule, AVR will, as it does in every other market, ensure that no less than 2 percent of all programming during the broadcast week be spoken word programming in an Aboriginal Canadian language and no less than 2 percent of all vocal musical selections played during each broadcast week in an Aboriginal Canadian language.
3773 I am pleased to advise the Commission that last month, Mr. Ron Ignace, the Chair of the task force in Aboriginal languages initiative joined AVR's board of directors where his expertise will be greatly appreciated and will be invaluable.
3774 The two Aboriginal language conditions of licence mentioned above, together with the requirement that a minimum of 25 percent of all programming be spoken word programming, including news, and a minimum of 35 percent of all musical selections from category 2 be Canadian selections, played in their entirety, have formed the backbone of the regulatory underpinning of AVR's many services. AVR meets or exceeds all of these thresholds and will continue to do so.
and Members of the Commission, for a national Aboriginal service to be
effective, it must be able to both send and receive programming of relevance
from a variety of communities in
3776 So we believe strongly in local Aboriginal content. Moreover, it is vital that the Aboriginal community be able to access the service as Aboriginal people constitute an impoverished subset of Canadian society, free over‑the‑air local radio will remain their primary source for many years to come.
3777 Finally, it is worth recalling that AVR features virtually 100 percent Aboriginal programming during the broadcast week. Ours is not a cross‑subsidy model. We are a truly Aboriginal service each and every broadcast day.
3778 I would like to ask Patrice to speak more about after the programming plans for AVR Regina.
MOUSSEAU: AVR radio service in
public affairs programs and open‑line talk shows will all address the
needs, interests, and concerns of First Nations, Inuit, and Metis Canadians,
particularly those who live in large urban centres like
3781 The network programming schedule will include full Aboriginal news reports, national phone‑in programs, a women's round table discussion, focus programs on language, youth, elders, health, et cetera, as well as specialty music programs featuring artist profiles, traditional music, blues, jazz, country, et cetera.
new AVR service in
will broadcast a number of newscasts which will aggregate more than three ‑‑
thirty ‑‑ sorry, three and a half hours per week. New story selection will focus on ‑‑
on events which impact
3784 Additional priority will be given to providing a venue for the expression of non‑mainstream viewpoints on current matters of the day. Source material from newscasts will come from Internet‑based, free news services, materials provided through cooperative arrangements with other local and regional alternative news sources and network‑produced reports. Original reportage will increase with the developing capacity of the news department.
also proposes to create a three‑minute feature to be called Community
Calendar, to provide a schedule of performances and other events taking place
noted earlier, AVR also proposes the same condition of licence requiring 25
percent of the broadcast week to be comprised of spoken word programs as it is
found elsewhere on AVR services throughout
addition to the local programming already discussed, AVR will feature a number
of national spoken‑word programs that will become available to
3788 While spoken word will be a significant component of the AVR Regina schedule, the station will also feature a mix of primarily Canadian and worldwide Aboriginal artists in a broad range of genres. Program hosts will provide informed commentary on the artist presented, along with a variety of education ‑‑ educational and entertaining Aboriginal Canadian perspectives on issues of the day.
3789 The widespread national availability of the AVR radio service has already dramatically increased exposure to the work of Aboriginal Canadian artists. Encouraging an increased awareness of Aboriginal culture, AVR will play a leading national role in the development and radio exposure of Native musical and spoken‑word talent.
3790 AVR has already begun the development of a national archive of Aboriginal Canadian artists. Currently there are 70 ‑‑ 7,500 individual selections performed by 658 artists and groups. The majority of the programming on AVR is drawn from this growing and important resource.
conditions of licence across
over‑delivery will be no different in
3793 AVR has since agreed to assist the Commission by confirming the Canadian content status of these Aboriginal Canadian artists who are not currently in the Commission's database.
3794 Once this extensive project is complete, AVR's Aboriginal Canadian content level will be found closer to 60 percent. AVR will aggressively promote the involvement of Aboriginal Canadian artists through regular airplay, interview appearances, guest hosting and live studio performances. AVR will encourage live music by offering extensive free promotion of the upcoming performances of Aboriginal artists.
3795 MR. HILL: In closing today I want to thank the Chair and members and staff of the Commission and the other licence applicants who are our colleagues in the broadcast industry.
3796 We want to thank the indigenous people of this area for permitting us to gather on their traditional territory for these hearings and we thank the Creator for our blessings.
3797 The Broadcasting Act, section 3(1)(d)(iii) states that the Canadian broadcasting system should reflect the special place of Aboriginal people within Canadian society.
3798 Section 3(1)(o) of the Act states that programming that reflects the Aboriginal cultures of Canada should be provided within the Canadian Broadcasting system as resources become available for that purpose.
3799 The boards of directors of AVR gratefully acknowledge the support of Phil Fontaine, the National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations; George Erasmus, co‑Chair of the Royal Commission on Aboriginal People; Perry Bellegarde, former Grand Chief of the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations and the Regional Chief of Saskatchewan; Beverley Jacobs, president of the Native Women's Association of Canada; Vera Pawis‑Tabobondung, president of the National Association of Friendship Centres; Marg Friesch, coordinator of the Circle of Aboriginal Community Voices here in Regina; Don Ross, president of Premier Developments; and the 90 percent of the respondents to the Doering survey who live in Regina and who reported they fully support the need for a national Aboriginal radio service.
3800 We are also delighted to have received strong support from such stars of the Aboriginal Canadian music scene as John Arcand, Donny Parenteau, Eekwol, and Andrea Menard. They understand the value of a national Aboriginal radio service both to their own development as musicians but also to the Aboriginal communities from which they come.
3801 Thank you.
3802 And we would be pleased to respond to your questions. All my relations.
3803 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr. Hill.
3804 Vice‑Chair Arpin...?
3805 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Thank you, Madam Chair. Thank you, Mr. Hill and your team.
3806 I will address my question to you, but you may ask where ‑‑ who you think is most appropriate to answer the question to the members of your team.
know that we ‑‑ at this hearing we will have the opportunity
to see you two other times, but ‑‑ so I will, today, restrict
my questions only to the Regina application.
I know that tomorrow we will have an opportunity to hear your
could you, as a first question, explain to the Commission why at this time in
the evolution of AVR it is ‑‑ you have applied for a service
in this market in
3809 MR. HILL: Yes.
3810 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: I think you partly gave the answer in your oral presentation, but you may want to expand.
3811 MR. HILL: Okay. Yes, Commissioner Arpin, I guess the primary reason is we feel very confident and, you know, strong about the idea that this national radio service is extremely important to Aboriginal people and we think that it's a ‑‑ as important to the Aboriginal community in Regina as is important as any other urban city.
Aboriginal people of
3813 The second reason, I think, is the fact that, you know, when this has happened in the past with AVR that we are faced with a situation where potentially we may not be able to have the opportunity to achieve a licence in Regina for a very long time.
the fact that the call for the
CARDINAL: Yes. I just want to add to the comment of having
the reflection of the Aboriginal voice brought back to the Aboriginal community
here in the City of
3816 Cultural reflectivity is a very important part and process of strengthening our Aboriginal communities, and we know that if we can create that space and opportunity for the Aboriginal voice to be heard far and wide around this region, we will be contributing not only to the wellbeing of Aboriginal people in Canada, but also to the wellbeing of the community as a whole.
HILL: Just to finish that answer, you
know, one of the primary missions of Aboriginal Voice Radio is to improve the
lives of Aboriginal people. And, you know,
we would certainly like the opportunity to help in that regard as much as we
can as a national radio service for the community in
ARPIN: So thank you. One of the first question that is ‑‑
appears to be obvious, at least for the Commission, is how will you be able to
finance the implementation of a new service for
HILL: Commissioner, we've done
projections which we have ‑‑ financial projections for several
years going out, looking out, and we've submitted financial projections that
show that we have the financial wherewithal as far as, you know, getting the
3820 Our projections are very conservative and they're based upon revenue streams which are virtually guaranteed because they're long‑term commitments from broadcast benefit packages.
3821 We've also added advertising, and I guess there's some grant contributions where we would apply for grants, but we have extremely conservative advertising projections for a national radio service. They're very, very low.
3822 So we wanted to give you a financial picture going out that is ‑‑ you can have a very high degree of confidence in because they're virtually guaranteed revenue streams.
3823 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: I don't think that those financial projections have been filed with the Commission, have they?
3824 MR. HILL: I thought they did. But for sure we can file them with the Commission and ensure that you have them if we haven't yet, but I was under the impression that we did.
3825 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Looking at ‑‑
3826 MR. HILL: I believe we'd be able to give you those ‑‑ to you today.
3827 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Okay, fine. Well, the ‑‑
3828 MR. HILL: Maybe if I could just add that, you know, in the development of the AVR national network there is a sequence that we see, and that is the first thing is to develop the stations and get the financial wherewithal to put ‑‑ to obtain licences and put the stations on the air.
3829 The next thing is to improve the programming to a point where it's high quality programming and of course, following that, we would be able to develop a ‑‑ to a pretty strong sales effort once we do things as far as the programming and getting the stations on the air.
3830 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: The ‑‑ other than having financial projections that you have developed, the ‑‑ do you have the necessary documentation that will help us to understand ‑‑ well, we are certainly aware of the benefit packages that has been approved in the past, so we know that the Commission has approved a good number of broadcasters' proposal to support the development of AVR.
3831 But other than that, do you have any other documentation that supports the ‑‑ your ‑‑ they're ‑‑ your availability of funds?
3832 MR. HILL: Well, you know, we put a lot of work into the financial projections to ensure that we were going to be on the mark regarding the financial future, so we can provide extensive information to the Commission and, you know, we'd certainly be willing to do that, Commissioner Arpin.
3833 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Yeah. And obviously some of it will be filed on a confidential basis so there ‑‑ if you think that you require that these documents not be put in the public record, staff and legal ‑‑ our legal people will surely look at and advise if it is ‑‑ if it could be filed in ‑‑ under confidence.
3834 MR. HILL: Okay. We appreciate that very much.
3835 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: I know other than ‑‑ obviously you addressed the issue of capital expenditures, but then there's the operational expenditures of a transmitter, and you also have programming plans and you ‑‑ and pre‑launch operating cost.
you have the ‑‑ do you have on hand the financing to do such
an investment for the
3837 MR. HILL: Yes, Commissioner. We have projected enough money. As a matter of fact, moving out into the future year by year in the documents that we submit, you'll find that we actually are in a surplus situation moving out ‑‑ as we move out.
3838 And this ‑‑ these have taken into account getting the stations on the air and providing a level of service. I have to say that, you know, the aspiration of AVR is to provide the most premium high quality service, you know, that anyone could provide for Aboriginal people. And we do recognize that that is contingent upon finances, you know, having the financial wherewithal to do a premium service.
3839 What we've projected, I would say, is a moderate service because, you know, we wanted to indicate to you that we could do that with a high degree of confidence based upon virtually ‑‑ the ‑‑ based upon revenue streams that are almost virtually guaranteed.
3840 But I want to say that we do believe amongst the AVR team that we are going to out‑perform what the projections are that we're giving to you. As you'll see, once you get a chance to take a look at the ‑‑ the advertising revenues, for instance, are extremely low.
3841 So we believe that we're going to, you know, have the financing to be able to, over a period of time, increase the quality of the programming that is coming into Regina.
3842 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Now, I notice in this morning's oral presentation that you have increased the local content from 25 to 32 hours of programming on a weekly basis. They ‑‑ you're ‑‑ I know that the application was based on 25 hours and 51 minute of local programming. Now, this morning, in your oral presentation you referred to 32 hours.
3843 We will surely have an opportunity to discuss later on the content of those 32 hours, but that means that you will probably need more staff than you ‑‑ what you have prepared because I notice that when I'm looking at your application, the ‑‑ I know that you have identified that you will need three programming staff, including one journalist, announcer for in excess of ‑‑ well, I have here now for 32 hours.
3844 You have also indicated that the roll‑out of the programming will be tied to a number of funding opportunities and initiative in which you have not elaborate ‑‑ but the ‑‑ well, we have all ‑‑ with respect to the funding initiative, other than the ‑‑ that the monies that you're getting through benefits and now you said "limited advertising revenues" and ‑‑ but you did mention grants. What type of grants are you talking about and what is really available for AVR?
HILL: Well, I think there are a number
of grant opportunities, Commissioner. We
have been successful in the past in gaining both federal grants and provincial
grants. For instance, in
3846 So as we build the programming into each urban centre, we believe that we will be able to access provincial types of grants to help with the local effort, as well as to continue to access federal grants that would provide contributions to help with the entire national radio network.
3847 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: But when you are getting grants from one province, can you use the proceeds for ‑‑ to invest in another province?
3848 MR. HILL: Well ‑‑
ARPIN: Because you mentioned the
3850 MR. HILL: Well, we believe that we'll be able to do that because we are going to provide local programming, and I think those grants would be specific to the local programming. So as far as we know right now, we would be able to do that.
3851 I mean it's going to vary from each province ‑‑
3852 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Yeah.
HILL: ‑‑ depending upon what their programs are, but ‑‑
HENNESSY: The ‑‑ good
morning. The Trillium Foundation grant
was specifically intended to be used for the development of an Aboriginal news
department, which included news stringers in various regions of the
3855 The application for that grant began before we had expanded our service, but they included the monies to be used to train and develop Aboriginal news staff as well as reaching out through the province, so a multi‑purpose application to that funding. Those are the types of grants that we're seeking.
3856 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: We'll now get to the specific of your application and the note that ‑‑ well, staff is ‑‑ has noted some inconsistencies between your programming grid and other responses that we've got out of your ‑‑ in your letter dated August 4th, 2006, and I have a series of question.
3857 Among ‑‑ one of them is that you've stated that you will be offering a best‑of‑the‑week recap of your weekday morning show on every Saturday morning between 6 a.m. and 10 in your programming grid. However, you have indicated that you will also offer best‑of‑the‑week recaps on Sundays.
3858 Would ‑‑ will you indeed be offering the same ‑‑ this recap program on Sundays or on Saturdays and ‑‑ or is it ‑‑ will it be a repeat of the Saturday program?
3859 MR. HILL: Commissioner, if I could, I'd like to ask our program director Patrice Mosseau to respond to that.
3860 MS MOUSSEAU: Yes, in fact we will be continue ‑‑ we're doing the best‑of morning show on both Saturday and Sunday.
3861 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: And is the Sunday a repeat of the Saturday or is it two different programs?
3862 MS MOUSSEAU: We're looking at doing two different programs at this time. Of course looking at funding, we may do a best‑of on both weekend days to start.
3863 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Okay. Although your program grid does not express as much, you have indicated that you would be providing three five‑minute weekly review features on Saturday mornings. Could you please confirm whether this in fact ‑‑ if it's the case? And so could you also, please, provide us with a description of ‑‑
3864 MS MOUSSEAU: Yes.
3865 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: ‑‑ these features?
3866 MS MOUSSEAU: The weekly review features will be ‑‑ like, the best‑of top news stories from the week previous will then be inserted into our best‑of morning show for the weekends on the Saturday and Sunday.
3867 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: You've also indicated that you will be providing seven three‑minutes community calendar features between Monday ‑‑
3868 MS MOUSSEAU: Mmhmm.
3869 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: ‑‑ and Sunday. Will those ‑‑ these be seven day ‑‑ daily features or seven ‑‑
3870 MS MOUSSEAU: It's very confusing. We actually had a small typo there.
3871 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Okay.
3872 MS MOUSSEAU: It says seven minutes. I think at the chart that you're looking at, it's actually ‑‑ or sorry, seven minutes total. It's actually 21 minutes per day.
3873 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Yes.
3874 MS MOUSSEAU: So it's running seven times ‑‑ seven times a day. It's a three‑minute program running seven times a day, seven days a week.
3875 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: So ‑‑ and is it the same feature that is repeated 7 times or 21 times or is it 21 different features or ‑‑
3876 MS MOUSSEAU: Because different community events will be happening throughout the week, someone can be then updating that on a regular basis and refreshing it every couple of days.
3877 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: So at the end of ‑‑ in a given week, you ‑‑ what, you could be covering two, three different ‑‑ two, three or four different events and update those ‑‑ the feature as long as you move throughout the week?
3878 MS MOUSSEAU: Absolutely.
3879 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: You also have indicated that you will hire three staff to fulfil the local programming commitment. These commitment will include up to 49 community calendars, 15 weekly locally‑produced newscasts, 15 hours of morning show.
3880 And you've added more this morning, the compilation of the best‑of‑the‑week features, in addition to research and reporting, liaising with CKV Toronto and other station functions.
3881 In this light, could you please elaborate on the function of each of the staff members to be employed directly by the proposed undertaking? And even before going there, since you've mentioned this morning 32 hours of local programming, maybe we could start reviewing those local programs so that we have a better understanding of what you ‑‑ what they are and then we could discuss staffing and the capability of this ‑‑ of these fairly limited number of people to do all that, that extensive work.
3882 MS MOUSSEAU: Mmhmm. The star of our local content, our local programming, is really the morning show. That's four hours a day, Monday to Friday, and then the reviews that happen on Saturday and Sunday.
two people that we have working on the morning and with ‑‑ in
addition to another person, they'll be also doing the news and the community
calendar which can then be programmed and run into as local programming
throughout the schedule in
3884 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: So the ‑‑ so say if I'm running the morning shows plus the two reviews that give us 28 hours, the ‑‑
3885 MR. HENNESSY: Just ‑‑ sorry, please. Just one quick thing, the difference that we've pointed out in the calculation of the community calendar between 21 minutes a week and 21 minutes a day ‑‑
3886 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Yeah.
3887 MR. HENNESSY: ‑‑ that's what contributes to the adjustment up to the 32 hours and 17 minutes. It's just reconciling the typo ‑‑
3888 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Okay.
3889 MR. HENNESSY: ‑‑ against what was actually on the sheet.
3890 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Yeah. Okay, fine. Now, you think ‑‑ well, could you help us in understanding what will be the functions of the ‑‑ your local people?
HENNESSY: Our roll‑out template
that we will use to implement service in each of the markets that we move to
commences with ‑‑ as was pointed out in one of the decisions
that we received, primarily the service will come from the
3892 And using technology, we can virtually create a news room in someone's home. Mortars and brick are the expensive part of our business, and that's the last thing that we'll look at moving towards on a permanent basis.
3893 But if we start out with the newsperson in Regina, their responsibility will be to contribute news, commentary, interviews, content about newsworthy items that will be of interest to people in Regina and also people across the national network.
content will be packaged as part of the major newscasts and delivered back to
each of the markets across the country.
If it's a story of particular interest in
3895 So the intent is to be 30 percent local, 30 percent regional and 40 percent national. That's our goal for the content makeup of the newscast.
3896 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: And ‑‑
3897 MR. HENNESSY: So we start with ‑‑ sorry?
3898 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Okay, so if I understand you right, you ‑‑ that new person ‑‑ newsperson will gather the information here, will produce his ‑‑ well, his newscast or his feature, whatever the ‑‑ they have to do, they will send it to Toronto, but it could ‑‑ but it will be on ‑‑ rebroadcast only in Regina or out ‑‑ on all the network? The ‑‑
HENNESSY: It will be included in the
national newscast, but an extended version of that can be brought into
3900 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: And Regina alone ‑‑
3901 MR. HENNESSY: ‑‑ more interest
3902 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: ‑‑ but aired ‑‑
3903 MR. HENNESSY: And Regina alone.
3904 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: But aired ‑‑
HENNESSY: We have the capability to
do ‑‑ or we will have the capability to do that with the new
master control system that we are on ‑‑ it's a delivery system
that we will be installing. We have the
space in our facility in
ARPIN: So your staff will not
necessarily be, as you said, the ‑‑ it will work from their basement
or wherever they ‑‑ they're personally located? You won't necessarily have a
HENNESSY: At the outset, no. That will have to be addressed as soon as we
3908 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Yeah.
3909 MR. HENNESSY: ‑‑ because we'll need a central location for guests, for artists, for the staff themselves to work from.
3910 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: But as ‑‑ but for ‑‑
3911 MR. HENNESSY: A similar thing is ‑‑ will happen. We are in discussions with the Weather Network and, very soon, we are going to introduce a national weather forecast and a more detailed local forecast that's ‑‑ which will be dropped into each of our stations.
3912 So again, using technology and relationship with the Weather Network, we will be able to provide travellers' weather ‑‑ and this is another way that we're dealing with the issue of the multitude of Aboriginal languages and that we're encouraging our morning show host ‑‑ the Inuit have 200 words for snow. I can only think of about four, one of which I can use here.
3913 They have a large number of words, and we're going to encourage that type of use of the language to be included into the programming, so that it becomes an item of interest. It becomes something that can be, in a humorous way, entertaining/educational, but it becomes a positive experience for people who are listening.
3914 Again, those sorts of things can be done from the master control and dropped into the individual locations.
WOOD: Mr. Chairman, I might also mention
that there would be a 1‑800 listener line. There will be a news tip award line where we
would pay $100 a week and $1,000 a year for the best news tip award. There will be the AVR news correspondent in
the community and there would be contact with the local Friendship Centres for
more of the
ARPIN: Now, that's the first stage, and
it's in ‑‑ to start with the news gathering and news producing
3917 MR. HENNESSY: In the news position? Yes.
3918 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Yes.
3919 MR. HENNESSY: Yes.
3920 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Okay. Then later, as finances are available, then you will ‑‑ you're planning to have a morning show, and it's when you will have that morning show that you will be also able to produce the best of the week and not before?
3921 MR. HENNESSY: Correct.
3922 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Correct. So when ‑‑ and how many employees will be involved in the morning show?
3923 MR. HENNESSY: For the local production of the morning show ‑‑
3924 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Yes.
3925 MR. HENNESSY: ‑‑ we'll have the newsperson, the morning host who is the anchor for the show does interviews, that type of thing. There will be a producer who operates the morning show and works to edit, putting together a community calendar, a multipurpose position such as that. And we also have a technician for the station that's on a service contract to maintain us technically.
3926 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: And that will ‑‑ at which stage of your development are you figuring out that you will be able to implement the morning program, so having local facilities?
3927 MR. HENNESSY: As quickly as possible. We are ‑‑
3928 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: And ‑‑
3929 MR. HENNESSY: ‑‑ we are very much aware of our ‑‑
3930 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: And in your own words, what the words "quickly" means?
3931 MR. HILL: Commissioner ‑‑
3932 MR. HENNESSY: 3/25 September ‑‑
3933 MR. HILL: Commissioner, I think that we have been able to put together a very strong team that's very focused on the financing issue going forward.
3934 And as I had mentioned, we want to deliver a premium service and we took that very seriously. And we know we have a national radio network to build and we have specifically hired people whose job it is to, I guess, you know, optimize our ability to achieve the type of financing that's required.
3935 MR. HENNESSY: One ‑‑
3936 MR. HILL: There are more people working on this than what is sitting here at the table.
3937 MR. HENNESSY: One of the things that was mentioned was the low advertising revenues. I think we should make a distinction between advertising and our concept of commercial advertising and what we are really attempting to create. We do not see ourselves as a commercial competitor. We don't believe we will be.
not going to be comparing cost per point with the commercial operations in the
market, but we do ‑‑ and we have one of our consultants, one
of our friends, has had some conversations with national public radio and
public broadcasting in the
3939 And they will receive the appropriate credits as you hear on public radio or you see on PBS, sponsored by the generosity of this foundation and that organization.
have a representative in
we have a consultant in ‑‑ who works out of Windsor who is
also working to help us develop this in
3942 So it's a different sales. It's a different product and it will be ‑‑ we don't see the money coming out of advertising budgets, more out of community relations, education and budgets of that nature that the companies have.
as we develop that, you know, quite possibly if the ‑‑ if it
was a company in
ARPIN: The programming plans that we are
discussing now for
3945 MR. HILL: Well, Commissioner, we've started to ‑‑
3946 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: To go on air?
3947 MR. HILL: Yeah, we're working on it right now. We haven't set a firm date. Our intention was as soon as this hearing is finished, we're going to be into determining more of an exact time when we're going to be able to achieve those things, but we think that it's not too ‑‑ not very far into the future.
3948 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: And it ‑‑ but it's ‑‑ and you're following the same steps?
3949 MR. HILL: Yes. Yes.
3950 MR. WOOD: Mr. Chairman, I might add that had there is no resistance on the part of AVR to provide local programming. You do not have to drag us kicking and screaming to do local programming. We fully appreciate the idea that local programming generates audience. That will be a very high priority for AVR, and it's linked really, again, to when the funds become available.
3951 I think that we've dramatically understated the capability of the network to generate sales revenues through advertising. And in part, I might ask Patrice to comment on some of the listener reaction we're getting ‑‑ not just from Aboriginal people, but from all people ‑‑ to the music that we're featuring on AVR.
MOUSSEAU: Our listeners in ‑‑
right now in
3953 THE CHAIRPERSON: Can you just speak up please?
3954 MS MOUSSEAU: Sorry.
3955 THE CHAIRPERSON: I'm sorry.
MOUSSEAU: That's okay. I get e‑mails and phone calls every day
from our listeners in
we want to be able to roll that out nationally.
We want everybody in
I think if
ARPIN: Now, the local programming that
we're talking about this morning, all of that will be ‑‑ in
which language will it be? In the ‑‑
in Cree, in
3960 MS MOUSSEAU: Shall I?
3961 MR. HILL: We ‑‑ right now, Commissioner, we're broadcasting two languages that I guess are the languages in the cities where we have this happening. The majority of the population ‑‑ and that's predominantly, right now, Cree and Ojibwe.
know there are other Aboriginal groups here and, you know, we would of course
broadcast in languages that are the most relevant for each city. So I know there are
ARPIN: We ‑‑ yesterday
we heard there were some
‑‑‑ Laughter / Rires
3964 MS MOUSSEAU: We have our spoken ‑‑ or our Aboriginal language requirement that we obviously are going to hit and probably exceed as far as language lessons actually having programming spoken in Aboriginal languages.
3965 But the thing is, is because we're going to have local talent here, they're going to ‑‑ have the ability not only to speak in English to their community, but to be able to use their own language commonly and make it something that's accessible and understandable, and then the people in the community can go, "Well, yeah, this is my language and I'm hearing it on the radio." And that's going to have a lot of benefit to get people more encouraged to use their language and to learn more about it.
3966 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Will you be doing some things for the Metis community?
3967 MS MOUSSEAU: Absolutely. In fact we already ‑‑ we have a Metis show ‑‑
3968 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Yeah.
MOUSSEAU: ‑‑ right now in
3970 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Now, if things go well and over time we ‑‑ are you planning to hire more than three and a half people to operate your local programming contention?
3971 MS MOUSSEAU: Well, one of the things about AVR is we're traditional storytellers, but we're using the best technology that we can find right now to do everything as quickly, as efficiently and as inexpensively as possible.
of the benefits of that is we can have DJs that are available and broadcasting
nationally from anywhere in the country, so we could have X number of staff
from right here in
3973 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Now, you haven't indicated that you will provide both locally‑produced and network‑produced spoken‑word programming including, like, a number of newscasts ‑‑ you know, well, we've already discussed my question. I apologize.
3974 MR. WOOD: Mr. Chairman, if I could just jump in?
3975 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Yes.
3976 MR. WOOD: One comment about additional local reflection. There has been great interest on the part of local community groups to come forward with programs that would be heard on AVR. AVR would make that widely known, that such programming would find a platform on AVR and we would also approach organizations like the local Friendship Centre, for example, to find out if they wanted to produce a program that would be heard locally and, depending on the quality aspects of it or the program in its entirety, could be heard nationally.
3977 So it won't just be whether we have a large enough staff to accommodate local programming; there will be feedback and input coming from the community itself. In fact, there's a fair amount of pent up demand for that.
3978 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Now, in the programming grid that you've provided us, you did mention number ‑‑ a good number of titles for network‑originated programming. However, since very little information was provided in relation to these programs, I personally consulted your Toronto website so ‑‑ where I found the ‑‑ some descriptions for Red Tales, Women's Round Table, Art Review, Metis Health, AKA American Indian Living, and Heartbeat. Could you confirm that the description of these programs provided on your website is current ‑‑ that currently is on your website, and I did check your website last week, so is this ‑‑ is that information still ‑‑
3979 MS MOUSSEAU: Program ‑‑
3980 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: ‑‑ accurate?
3981 MS MOUSSEAU: ‑‑ descriptions that are on the website are in fact correct.
3982 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: So it ‑‑
3983 MS MOUSSEAU: Now, we ‑‑
3984 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: ‑‑ they are accurate?
3985 MS MOUSSEAU: ‑‑ we do have a few more additions to make to the website. We've been pretty busy. Haven't had a chance to update it recently but, yeah, the descriptions there ‑‑
3986 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: But what ‑‑
3987 MS MOUSSEAU: ‑‑ are correct.
3988 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: ‑‑ what is on the website is accurate?
3989 MS MOUSSEAU: Yes.
ARPIN: Could you ‑‑ and
getting back to your morning show that you're planning to have for
MOUSSEAU: This morning show is really
going to be an opportunity for the people in
3992 One of the reasons why I'm so excited to come into this market is because the musical talent in this province is extraordinary. We've had an opportunity to have several artists send their ‑‑ send us their CDs because they are really well‑known, like Andrea Menard for example, and she gets played all the time on AVR. And there's a lot of regional musicians that haven't even had the opportunity ‑‑
3993 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: But she's played at ‑‑
3994 MS MOUSSEAU: ‑‑ to hear about it.
3995 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: ‑‑ in many other radio stations as well.
3996 MS MOUSSEAU: Yeah, she's fantastic.
3997 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Yeah.
3998 MS MOUSSEAU: But there's a lot of hidden talent there, so on the morning show we have an opportunity for people to come in and be heard live and be heard in their communities, as well as news, weather, talk.
3999 We could have people coming in talking about Aboriginal leadership, local issues, perhaps provincial/federal politics, getting people involved in their communities, talking about the ability of people to get involved to learn languages. Maybe there's local programs here that AVR can be promoting to promote the use of Aboriginal languages and bring that back into the community.
mean really the possibilities are endless as to what we can do for
4001 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: The ‑‑ will the morning show be more spoken driven or more music driven?
4002 MS MOUSSEAU: I see it probably about half and half. A lot of music, a lot of talk ‑‑ I mean it's a variety show.
CARDINAL: If you don't mind me adding to
that as well? In
so at this point, we're experiencing a real buy‑in from the Aboriginal
communities, particularly in
ARPIN: Are you on air in
4006 MR. CARDINAL: No, not yet.
4007 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: So the thing is that it's tough to have a program for the community when you're not yet on air.
4008 MR. CARDINAL: Absolutely. They're very excited about the opportunity that's coming, so that's what I wanted to reiterate.
4009 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: You wanted to ‑‑
4010 MR. HILL: I just wanted to comment, Commissioner, that we did talk about some, I guess, themes that would kind of position AVR. And the first and most important one in the spoken‑word portion is heritage and culture, Aboriginal heritage and culture, and Aboriginal values.
4011 We do have a show called the Wisdom of the Elders right now, and that type of, I guess, content would certainly take place as part of the morning show. We're also very interested in promoting environmental issues because of Native people's respect for the land and for Mother Earth.
4012 We do have an aspiration of, I guess, fostering discussion around, I guess, issues such as economic development and, I guess, things that maybe some of the leadership ‑‑ Aboriginal leadership is involved in.
also are going to, you know, feature extensive programming about the arts,
which is certainly a large part of Aboriginal culture. And also education is one thing that we think
is very important and it's ‑‑ one of the things that we want
to promote as well. And as Patrice said,
you know, there's just a tremendous amount of talent in
4014 MR. WOOD: Just in order to follow up on that comment from Mr. Hill, to give you a kind of broad overview of where AVR wants go with its programming, in order to help improve the lives of Aboriginal people the focus would be, number one, on news every hour of the day, 24 hours a day. We consider news very important.
4015 Secondly would be the national two‑hour telephone talk show every day, Monday through Friday. And third would be 30 to 60 minutes of enriched public affairs programming each and every day. That is what AVR ultimately hopes to do to harmonize what it's doing on all of its stations. It will be an information rich service as the funds become available.
4016 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: The ‑‑
HENNESSY: We talk about the national
talk show. There is a local component to
that in each of the markets. The
technological developments that seem to be going at breathtaking speed, the
effect it's a small production board which would go into the control room of
each of our local facilities like in the facility in
the way this equipment is designed, by simply switching a knob, in
ARPIN: Mr. Wood, in the ‑‑
you just mentioned talk ‑‑ just mention of news and the
importance of news and news at every hour means that there ‑‑
what you're saying is you're thinking ‑‑ talking about having
168 newscasts a week. Now for
4021 But regarding local news, what type of content are you ‑‑ will you be looking at? Specific contents to the Aboriginal or newscasts about what's going on in the city? Because it has some importance also for the Aboriginal population and ‑‑
4022 MS MOUSSEAU: Yeah, we'll be looking at ‑‑ I think it's a two‑pronged ‑‑ sorry, it's a two‑pronged approach as taking a look at issues that affect Aboriginal people directly, perhaps news stories that are being maybe under‑reported by the mainstream news, as well as taking a look at news events, current events that mean something to Canadians at large. But we can take a look at them from the Aboriginal perspective so that we can say, "Well, this is what Aboriginal people think about this particular issue."
WOOD: Mr. Arpin, I just wanted to add
also that the comment about the hourly news is not a local current
4024 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: The ‑‑ that's ‑‑
4025 MR. WOOD: ‑‑ in the future.
4026 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: ‑‑ that's what I understood.
WOOD: Yes. Also Mr. Cardinal has a comment also with
regard to the dialogue that would occur amongst communities across
CARDINAL: Yes. It's just important to note that the issues
that arise within different parts of the nation also have a resounding effect
on communities in the West, for example, the
4029 MR. HENNESSY: We also ‑‑ we regard ourselves as being an inclusive organization, and the programming that we do is intended to invite people in to participate and learn, Aboriginal and non‑Aboriginal.
4030 One quick anecdote. When we were working with the Trillium Foundation funds and had three in our news room in Toronto, and a couple of them were juniors and were being trained. I walked into the news room one morning, and there was the usual black coffee and pounding away on keyboards. I said, "Well, what's the big story today?"
4031 And there were a couple of mutterings about incidents that were totally Aboriginal in nature. And I just smiled and I said, "I thought the fact that we have a new Pope was pretty interesting." And I just left. About 45 minutes, an hour later, the news director came in the door and said, "Listen to the newscast."
4032 And they ‑‑ it had started the wheel spinning about this idea being inclusive, and we ended up with a 20‑minute interview with one of the representatives of Six Nations who had been there when the Pope, who had just passed away, had visited Six Nations. And there was a whole discussion about the relationship between the Catholic Church and the Aboriginal people; that's the type of thing that we want to do in each of the communities on an ongoing basis.
ARPIN: Now, in your programming grid
that you have, you're suggesting to have a local newscast at 6 a.m., 8 a.m.,
and 1 a.m. and for a duration of five minutes each. Will they be solely focused on local news or
what will be ‑‑ or will they also contain national news
materials? Or what will be produced here
4034 MS MOUSSEAU: The Regina newscast, the ‑‑ we have the ability to draw from the national news, so they can look at the major stories of the day, include that into their local news broadcast.
WOOD: Mr. Chairman, to the extend though
that national stories are aired from the
ARPIN: You have indicated that you
intend to source the majority of your future programming, such as OOP(ph),
Wisdom of the Elders, Turtle Highland Line(ph), Heart Review(ph), and other
from AV ‑‑ from your network.
The urban Aboriginal experience in
4037 With this in mind, could you please comment on how these programs will be specifically relevant to Regina Aboriginal population?
MOUSSEAU: These programs although they
are produced in
perhaps the host is in
4040 MR. HILL: Commissioner, I think ‑‑ I believe that's one of the strengths of AVR is ‑‑ and this happens outside of the radio broadcast, is the exchange of stories and, you know, information amongst Aboriginal people across the country so ‑‑ and it happens in all different areas.
4041 You know, there are many things in the arts. There are many things as far as the Native political leadership. There are many things as far as the elders are concerned where there are national events and discussions, where there is a collaboration and exchange of understanding amongst all these various groups.
4042 And I think that's one of the benefits that the national radio network brings to local communities, is that what's happening in the other communities is ‑‑ there's an increased awareness in the local community and what's happening in other local communities, and I think that goes both ways, that ‑‑ that's certainly the ‑‑ you know, a local community ‑‑ the Aboriginal communities in Toronto could benefit from, you know, being engaged and hear what's happening in Regina.
4043 MR. CARDINAL: Let me add to the ‑‑ to those points that you've made, Jamie. The ‑‑ right now we know that there's over 60 percent of Aboriginal people that live in ‑‑ with ‑‑ within urban centres and we also know that across the country each of these urban centres, like Toronto and Edmonton and Vancouver, are faced with similar issues.
of the top five issues that are consistently brought forward by these
Aboriginal communities is one of Aboriginal ‑‑ access to
Aboriginal culture and history. A lot of
our urban centres are without access to these institutions of culture and
ceremony, and these are very important in providing a sense of continuity and a
sense of identity for Aboriginal people within the urban settings. So when we talk about issues within
4045 How we're dealing with them are unique, and that in and of itself creates the opportunity for a wonderful dialogue in sharing and creating strategies to deal with these issues.
ARPIN: The ‑‑ regarding
to Aboriginal languages, I note that in your oral presentations you agreed to
the existing conditions of licence that appear in all your ‑‑
the licence that have been granted to you.
So only to reiterate, so the ‑‑ you do accept the
conditions of licence that they have been granted to your existing licence,
that they could be ‑‑ that they apply for
4047 MR. HILL: Commissioner, yes, we accept those conditions and we support them.
4048 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Yes, including the 25 percent of spoken word?
4049 MR. HILL: Yes, including the 25 percent of spoken word.
4050 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: The ‑‑ now, are you planning to sell any advertising locally, and if yes, at which stage in the development of your service?
4051 MR. HILL: No, we do not have any intention to sell local advertising. It's ‑‑ our intention is to sell national advertising, so maybe that's a question that speaks to our impact on, I guess, local broadcasting. And we don't expect that we're going to have any negative effect on local broadcasting, so we don't have any intention of selling local advertising.
4052 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Including the local component of your ‑‑ of the programming grid that you have proposed?
4053 MR. HILL: Yes, including that as well.
ARPIN: And now, as you know, we will
hear today an application by Natotawin Broadcasting to operate also a type B
radio broadcast programming undertaking.
Well, they are currently in La Ronge and they are applying for a rebroad
in ‑‑ rebroadcasting facility in
to ‑‑ and you referred to the 2001 census, the Aboriginal
population is approximately 16,000 people.
Some are saying that by today, it's probably closer to 20,000, but do
you think there's room for two services to serve the Aboriginal population in
HILL: Yes, Commissioner, the primary
mission of AVR is to improve the lives of Aboriginal people. And we support, with that idea, I guess, as
much Aboriginal media availability as possible.
We do believe there are room for two ‑‑ two Aboriginal
I want to say especially in light of the fact that we have some demographic
projections that indicate that within a couple of generations, that
approximately half of the population of
4058 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: The ‑‑ and how will your service ‑‑ I don't know if you have had a chance to look at the application of Natotawin, but how your ‑‑ if you do, could you tell me how the ‑‑ your service will defer from them?
4059 MR. HILL: Well, I think that it's a difference between a national programming service and a local or regional program service. I think that the thing ‑‑ Aboriginal Voices is virtually 100 percent Aboriginal. Our intention is to, at a minimum, have ‑‑ or to play 50 percent of Canadian Aboriginal artists. We are not aware that there are any other broadcasters providing any type of service like that. We are not aware of any intention to provide a service like that.
I think that, you know, we're distinct as far as other Aboriginal broadcast
services and I think ‑‑ and those are the two primary ways
that we're almost all Aboriginal content, and it's a national dialogue and I
think that certainly I would hope that
4061 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: The ‑‑ your service as ‑‑ and you mention it on numerous occasion, and it's also in your original application, is catering to the Aboriginal people in the urban centres.
4063 MR. HILL: Well, one of the things that we have said previously and we still intend to go forward with the plan that we will provide all of our programming free of charge to, you know, any and all Aboriginal broadcasters across the country, so any regional broadcaster or First Nations‑based radio station will be able to download our programming free of charge.
4064 So I mean some of them may be interested, and we believe that they would be, and some have expressed interest in some of our national content just to, you know, provide something else. I mean it's not available right now, but the ‑‑ you know, we would be able to provide a national content for them at whatever level they think is appropriate.
4065 So we have focused primarily in, I guess, our presentations on the urban Aboriginal people where more than half ‑‑ the statistics show that more than half of Aboriginal people do live in urban centres, but we fully intend to provide our service free of charge to any other Aboriginal broadcaster.
4066 MR. CARDINAL: Maybe also add to that by stating, again, demographics around transmigration between First Nations and Aboriginal communities and urban centres. They seem ‑‑ there ‑‑ there's a lot of going back and forth between the city and their traditional areas or their communities. That number is consistent. That means people are coming here and working, returning homes either on weekends or certain durations of time. We also recognize that there's a huge population growth within the urban centres themselves.
in this way, AVR is providing an access to information that is not accessible
in their remote communities nor their communities in general. And I think that's one major contribution
that AVR will give to the Aboriginal people in
4068 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Maybe it's the place to ask my questions regarding ‑‑ well, yesterday when Standard appear for a ‑‑ for their application to serve Regina, they referred to an agreement that had ‑‑ they had signed with AVR regarding a weekly news magazine that they are contemplating for the ‑‑ for this market, and now it's my ‑‑ could you say to us more about what that agreement is all about?
HILL: Yes, I'd be happy to,
Commissioner. We have a great
relationship with Standard, and Standard has been very good to AVR. And what we'll be providing is some of our
news content to supplement a weekend program that they will do. So we think it's a great idea that will
increase, I guess, the Aboriginal perspective on some of the events happening
in the world that are coming into
HENNESSY: This conversation with
Standard began when they were applying for licences in
4071 That was the total extent of the conversation. Given that we weren't applying in those markets and our mandate or desire to expand the awareness of Aboriginal issues, we agreed that we would supply that content to them if they were successful. When they applied for licences here and Saskatoon, we were contacted again by Standard and said, "Would you see your way to it being possible for us to have the same content provided for news magazine shows in these two new licence applications?"
4072 I pointed out to them that we were applying for licences in that market but I'd ‑‑ and I discussed this with everyone involved in the licence application that ‑‑ and we agreed that we did not see that as a conflict or as a problem because, again, it addresses our mandate of getting Aboriginal information and awareness out to the general community.
4073 And it's quite conceivable that a number of people who would be listening to the Standard stations, if they're successful, would not listen to AVR. So we would, again, be helping to increase awareness and we pointed out to them that we were applying for licences and that if we were ‑‑ both parties were successful, we would still be going to provide that information to them. That's the total extent of our discussions with them to achieve our goals and in a way, I guess, help them achieve theirs.
4074 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Thank you.
4075 We'll now talk about the CTD, or Canadian Television Development Program. We ‑‑ well, we note that your plans in terms of promotion of Aboriginal artists includes broadcasting Aboriginal music, the creation of CD/DVD package contributing to an annual talent showcase, and the broadcast of special events such as powwow.
4076 In light of your stance on conditions of licence regarding the broadcast of Aboriginal language/music, could you please indicate how such a position will impact the diversity of Aboriginal music to be broadcast?
4077 MS MOUSSEAU: I'm sorry, can you actually rephrase just that last bit?
4078 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: The ‑‑ well, you have a plan for CD, producing CD and DVD, and you refer to it in your oral presentation that you have that still ‑‑
4079 MS MOUSSEAU: Yes, the ‑‑ that album.
4080 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Right. I'll ‑‑ and you have developed a music library of major importance.
4081 MS MOUSSEAU: Mmhmm.
4082 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: And what my question has to do with is that ‑‑ would you please indicate how such a position will impact the diversity of Aboriginal music to be ‑‑ well ‑‑
HENNESSY: If you're wondering about how
this ‑‑ how our national library actually is going to impact
Aboriginal talent in
4084 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Yeah.
4085 MR. HENNESSY: ‑‑ I see in a multiple fashion, that we can accomplish that, but by having local ‑‑ even just starting with the local newsperson who makes us aware there was a large concert last night or there's a new band, has a new CD out, I've got an interview with them ‑‑ having that on‑the‑street contact as the beginning, then eventually through the morning show host and their relationship with the community, becoming an integrated part of it, they make the national network or the national library, the ‑‑ aware of these artists, arrange for interviews to be featured across the country, so it becomes a developmental tool for artists in Regina and even other stations across the province that might discover an Aboriginal artist in their community.
they get airplay on that local station and it's brought to us, we can then take
that and accelerate it by including it in our library, which we hope to operate
as an E‑commerce as well so we can facilitate the selling of downloads of
these artists' albums because you certainly won't find them at HMV. We are the epitome of emerging talent, so
having the vehicles like the E‑commerce downloading capability would
allow us to accelerate the development of an artist from
4087 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Your ‑‑ is your music library ‑‑ well, will your music library made ‑‑ be made available to other Native broadcasters or ‑‑
4088 MR. HENNESSY: We see it as evolving into a resource for all Canadians, for everyone to access. So if a broadcaster made ‑‑ was made aware of or wanted to access our library to download a track to feature in their playlist, that's part of the service that that library is intended to perform.
4089 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: You ‑‑
4090 MR. HENNESSY: And they pay us 99 cents for it.
ARPIN: I see. Now, creation of CD/DVD and coverage of
powwows locally here in
4092 MS MOUSSEAU: Once our morning show is in place because we have ‑‑ like, I mentioned we're a pretty lean, mean machine here as far as technology goes. We can just take them and put them right into that powwow and have them broadcast live from that event.
HENNESSY: We are having
discussions ‑‑ oh, sorry.
There we are. We have been having
discussions and are beginning planning to make our first appearance at the
Calgary Stampede next year. Sorry,
ARPIN: Well, you don't have to be sorry
‑‑‑ Laughter / Rires
4095 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: So ‑‑
WOOD: Mr. Chairman, just picking up on a
comment that Mr. Hennessy made regarding the developmental support that AVR
will provide, again, it's a point worth emphasizing, I think, that all of the
artists featured on AVR are Aboriginal are that all of the artists are emerging
because they've never before been heard.
And that, in a way, makes AVR a very distinct service because we believe
it's the only service in
4097 Most of the regional services and independent stations are featuring a fairly large component of commercial, mainstream, chart‑oriented music. So whereas there's a component of mainstream music in those stations, sometimes very large, we are 100 percent Aboriginal.
MOUSSEAU: Sorry, may I just make one
more comment? One of the things about
Aboriginal Voices Radio is ‑‑ that is enormous is that we are
100 percent Aboriginal in all of our music, and the fact is is that people are
going to be hearing us and knowing that their people are making this
music. It gives them the opportunity to
hear other sounds from across
4099 Recently I ‑‑ a friend of mine brought some kids with her out of Manitoba to Toronto to check out the local universities, to encourage them to ‑‑ for post‑secondary education, and they were listening to AVR for the first time and they were shocked because they couldn't believe how great the music was on our station.
you know, one girl said, "You know what?
I'd had no idea Robbie Robertson was Aboriginal." Like, these are things the community at
large, especially the youth community, doesn't know. And they can look at that as a source of
pride, and Aboriginal Voices Radio will bring ‑‑ will be able
to bring that to all of
HENNESSY: One other quick comment with
regards to the development of talent in
4102 And the discussion ‑‑ to make it perfectly obvious, the discussion of an Aboriginal Idol type of show and production has got their interest, and that would be an opportunity where we could take an emerging artist from Regina or in Edmonton or in Calgary, have them perform in competition and be recorded and featured.
4103 And whether we can develop this into what also becomes a television feature as well, we don't know, but we have interest from the people involved in pursuing it. These are the sorts of things that we think about, dream about and hope we can afford.
4104 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Well, Mrs. Chairman, I'm through with my questions.
4105 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you.
4106 Commissioner Pennefather...?
4107 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you, Madam Chair.
morning. I have a question which is just
for our understanding in terms of music, and don't interpret it as a
4109 But talking about the CD/DVD package under talent development and the project of ‑‑ as you did this morning, of including Aboriginal Canadian artists in the current database, et cetera. Just as a general sense, the artists that you're talking about cover all the genre of music or are we ‑‑ you know, I am aware of some artists, but just so that we have a better understanding, we would be looking at artists in a variety of genre from rock right through to classical, I suppose?
MOUSSEAU: Absolutely. Aboriginal artists across
4111 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: And the artist ‑‑ yes, it's ‑‑ I imagine, too, that that same issue comes into play with other organizations such as FACTOR or other organizations where the classification is also being discussed, so that Aboriginal artists are classified according to their genre of music as opposed to being an Aboriginal artist. Is that also a problem in terms of other organizations, like FACTOR, or any of the others?
4112 MS MOUSSEAU: I'm not sure ‑‑
4113 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Are there getting ‑‑ in other words, are they being included as Canadian artists appropriately in other areas like FACTOR?
4114 MS MOUSSEAU: I would think not because how are they possibly getting exposure if not through Aboriginal Voices Radio? There isn't the distribution. They aren't getting the commercial airplay. They're not getting any media coverage. There's not a lot of buzz. If they're playing clubs, you know, they're slogging it away in these little tiny clubs, and maybe they're not getting the opportunity to come into FACTOR.
4116 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: And then start the process?
4117 MS MOUSSEAU: ‑‑ as well as on mainstream ‑‑
4118 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: And can start the process that way?
4119 MS MOUSSEAU: Absolutely.
4120 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: And we're talking about artists singing or playing ‑‑ well, let's take singing; obviously playing something else, but the singing in both and, of course, if they're singing opera in Italian or German, but also Aboriginal languages?
4121 MS MOUSSEAU: Yes. Yeah, we actually play Aboriginal music songs in Aboriginal languages played by Aboriginal musicians right now.
4122 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Is it the majority of songs would be in English or in Aboriginal languages?
4123 MS MOUSSEAU: The majority ‑‑
4124 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: How does it break down?
4125 MS MOUSSEAU: Yeah, the majority of the songs right now, I believe, are in English and that's because I ‑‑ I believe that Aboriginal artists are concerned about becoming commercially viable. In order to do that, they want to sing in English. More people will understand that.
4126 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Of course.
4127 MS MOUSSEAU: Again with AVR, we have an opportunity to play those Aboriginal languages, those Aboriginal songs. Perhaps you might encourage more of our artists to start, again, singing in their original languages.
PENNEFATHER: That's sort of my point
when saying ‑‑ I'm not talking about the 2 percent, but it
is ‑‑ a component of the mandate of AVR is bringing that
exposure but also that was access for the rest of
4129 MS MOUSSEAU: Yeah. I mean we hit our 2 percent to requirement, but that's not why we play the music. The songs are fantastic, and they get ‑‑ include not just in those sections of our Aboriginal music programming, but it's also included in our main play lists.
PENNEFATHER: A couple of other follow‑up
questions from your discussion with Vice‑Chair Arpin, you mentioned the
two‑hour national talk show. Would
it ‑‑ which would appear to be an open‑line show because
I think people will be calling in, and that was your point in terms of a
4131 MR. HENNESSY: Yes, the production facilities will be able to monitor delay the broadcast. There will be a producer in place to monitor content and make sure that we're within guidelines.
PENNEFATHER: A producer in
4133 MR. HENNESSY: That will be the hub for the program.
4134 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Right.
HENNESSY: But as I pointed out with the
technology we've got, we'll be able to remote ‑‑ we can bring
a guest in. We could have the mayor of
4136 MR. WOOD: Also ‑‑
PENNEFATHER: And local residents in
4138 MR. WOOD: No, that's ‑‑ I'm sorry. I was just going to say one of the most important components of a talk show is the person who screens the calls.
4139 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Yes.
4140 MR. WOOD: So as the calls come in, somebody at headquarters will be screening the calls, not only for appropriateness to the subject, but for balance and to ensure that all points of view have a chance to be aired. So we definitely will provide for that.
4141 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: And local residents here would use a ‑‑
4142 MR. WOOD: A 1‑800 line.
4143 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: ‑‑ 1‑800 number?
4144 MR. WOOD: Yes.
4145 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: You also discussed the website program descriptions, and I think you indicated to my colleague that there were some descriptions that were to be added. And in order to have a complete picture of the program descriptions for our purposes, could you supply us with the program descriptions and ‑‑ so we don't have to wait for the website?
4146 MS MOUSSEAU: Absolutely. I can provide you either a hardcopy or digital copy by the end of the day or ‑‑ whatever, by the week, whatever ‑‑ your choice, whatever you'd like.
4147 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you.
4148 And just my last question is I hate ‑‑ Mr. Hennessy ‑‑ Miss ‑‑ do you want to pick up on that timing question, counsel? Thank you. Speaking of timing, I just wanted to get back to your "quickly as possible", Mr. Hennessy.
thanks to your discussion this morning, I think we have a better understanding
of how you see this service, as Mr. Cardinal so eloquently said at the
beginning of the discussion, a service ‑‑ an AVR without
4150 And so I come back to the question of ‑‑ I think I understand the thesis of how the local service would develop over time, but in terms of this being an application for frequency in the Regina market, could I ask you again to give us perhaps a more precise sense of when you feel that the morning show will be a Regina morning show, if I can put it that way, and the rest of the grid would in fact ‑‑ in addition to the talk show being a national show and the other national shows available, the concept of a Regina AVR service would be a reality? Can you give us a better sense of the "quickly as possible"?
4151 MR. HILL: I could comment on that, Commissioner. I mean this ‑‑ it's a projection, and if I was to lay odds, I would say that by the end of a one‑year period of being granted the licence that we would be able to achieve pretty much the quality that we intend to.
4152 And I base that upon the fact that I've been on the board for a couple of years and I've seen great strides forward under not the best conditions. And I think that we have an extremely talented team in place, that it's ‑‑ if I could, I think it's the best team that AVR's had so far. Although there was a lot of talents that, you know, got us to this point, but we've tried to put a team in place right now that can move us on to the next level. And from my awareness, I think that ‑‑ I mean I'm very happy with the way things are going at this point.
4153 And we've given you a conservative, I guess, projection on what we're going to do, but we're quite confident ‑‑ and we do that on purpose. You know, we want to give you something that you can have a great confidence in. But from what I know personally about ‑‑ you know, about AVR and the things that we're working on, I have a very high level of confidence that we're going to be able to, you know, deliver on what I would call, you know, the top programming that we could very quickly.
4154 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you, Mr. Hill. Thank you, Madam Chair.
4155 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Thank you.
just have a few questions. Would you
agree to a
4157 MR. HILL: Yes, we would.
CHAIRPERSON: And given your high level
of confidence, Mr. Hill, would you agree to a
4159 MR. HILL: We will agree to the conditions of licence that you think are appropriate and we'll work vigorously to meet those. And I want to say that we take these things extremely seriously and ‑‑
4160 THE CHAIRPERSON: As do we.
4161 MR. HILL: Yes.
4162 MR. WOOD: Commissioner, if I could just respond to the condition of licence for local advertising? In the event that AVR reaches the threshold that would enable us to do local advertising, we think that ‑‑ we would hope that the Commission would keep in mind that there are probably emerging Aboriginal businesses that might want to advertise on AVR. That's the only comment I'll make.
4163 THE CHAIRPERSON: Oh, I thought your model was sponsorship, and that's a totally different issue.
4164 MR. WOOD: Well, it's ‑‑ whether it's ‑‑ whether you're calling it sponsorship or whether you're calling it advertising, within your regulation, effectively if there's a condition there that says we can't do that, then we shut out local advertisers who might want to advertise on the radio station, or sponsors.
4165 THE CHAIRPERSON: Well, I don't know ‑‑
4166 MR. HENNESSY: It's not our ‑‑
4167 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mr. Hennessy...?
4168 MR. HENNESSY: It's not our intention to have a retail sales force on the street competing with the commercial broadcasters. Our focus is to generate funding to develop the network from those alternate sources that I pointed out, but the ‑‑
CHAIRPERSON: So on the understanding
that sponsorship is not included in the concept of local advertising, will you
agree to a
4170 MR. HILL: We'll agree to your conditions of licence and comply with them.
4171 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay. And you will agree to a condition of licence that by the end of year two of the licensing term, you will be here and producing 32 hours a week of locally produced programming?
4172 MR. HILL: If that is the decision of the Commission, yes, we will.
4173 THE CHAIRPERSON: Well, will you agree to that or not?
4174 MR. HILL: We would.
4175 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you.
4176 And as to your issue, Mr. Wood, of emerging businesses, I don't know if you heard this morning that SIGA, Saskatchewan Indian Gaming Association, has earned 40 million in profits, net profits. And that, then, goes to my question to you, Mr. Hennessy. Is there no thought of seeking out sponsorships from some of the not emerging, but already existing, very strong First Nation businesses in the West?
4177 MR. HENNESSY: Absolutely. Those are the types of organizations that we would want to talk to. We have worked with, based on our ‑‑
CHAIRPERSON: Have you gone to Peace
Hills Trust in
4179 MR. HENNESSY: No, we've been dealing with Ontario Lottery and Gaming Commission and with the casino ‑‑ or Casino Rama.
4180 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay, yeah.
4181 MR. HENNESSY: We've been dealing with them and they ‑‑ now again, there is a situation where they have not sponsored the program, but they have participated in programs dealing with addiction to gambling and have also purchased a campaign regarding responsibility in gambling. So that's sort of a bit of a grey issue as to what is advertising. It's not ‑‑
4182 THE CHAIRPERSON: It's indeed unfortunate that you have received the opposition of the La Ronge Band which owns one of the very ‑‑ I'm going to say probably one of the top businesses in Saskatchewan, and that you've lost the confidence of the Prince Albert Grand Council because they also own one of the top ten businesses in Saskatchewan, so it's a ‑‑ it's unfortunate.
4183 At page 5 of your production of your presentation today, you've made this assertion that Canadians from coast to coast overwhelmingly approve of an Aboriginal national radio service, and I want you to review that assertion given the questions that Mr. Doering asked. And if you look at page 29 of what he asked, I think you should be careful in using that assertion. If you notice, what he said is, "I would like to ask you some questions about a concept for a new radio station in your city."
if you can tell me where it refers to an Aboriginal radio network, I would
accept your assertion. However, I only
see three questions that he asked, and none of them refer to a national
Aboriginal network. So the demand, I
4185 MR. WOOD: Commissioner, I'd just make a comment that we'd be more than pleased to follow up with a statement on that from Mr. Doering.
4186 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yeah. Well, unless there were other questions, it's difficult to see the basis for his conclusion.
4187 I wanted to talk what about I call reinventing the wheel and I'm having some concerns, as you may have heard yesterday about that too, not in relation to yourselves but in relation to other issues.
4188 Do you have any relation with APTN? Because they have a terrific news‑gathering machine already in force. Have you tried to set up any cooperative arrangements with them?
4189 MR. HILL: Madam Chair, to tell you the truth, we've been so engaged in the initiatives before us and the challenges before us as far as getting our stations on the air, that we haven't had the opportunity. We've certainly agreed that it is ‑‑
4190 THE CHAIRPERSON: Because they've got a lot of resources, you know, in terms of people in the North and ‑‑
4191 MR. HILL: Yes, yes. And we've always thought that once we get to a certain point, that ‑‑ and that's the relationship building part and looking for partnerships and so forth where we can, I guess, mutually benefit from these relationships that we would do that. But I guess we saw a sequence, and we were very much focused on getting our stations on the air and meeting our commitments.
4192 THE CHAIRPERSON: And they also have ‑‑ Mr. Wood, they have a national talk show, and it would make imminent sense for me that ‑‑ if you would rebroadcast it, and simply because APTN sometimes doesn't have the station on the ‑‑ the spot on the dial under 20, I mean it makes sense to me that that would achieve some of your objective, and then you could build into developing your own in ‑‑ rather than redoing something.
4193 MR. WOOD: Yes, I think that's absolutely correct but I also think there's such a pent up demand to express points of view ‑‑
4194 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yeah.
4195 MR. WOOD: ‑‑ from different regions of the country that ‑‑ and also, radio does deliver the component of access to our service on free over‑the‑air radio, so it's available to people who might not have access in certain workplace locations or, for example, in their vehicle. There are a lot of programs that they wouldn't be able to access that are on APTN, and likewise.
4196 So if we were running the APTN service, it's ‑‑ it would certainly be a benefit to us, but it ‑‑ our programming would be of benefit to them as well.
4197 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes, I agree.
4198 MR. WOOD: They receive a significant amount of revenue through cable fees and I think it goes with the territory that, if you have the revenue, you can generate high quality programming.
4199 And when AVR completes its financing and revenue plans, it too will provide high quality programming, but we certainly think there is merit in meeting with Mr. Larose and his staff and talking about those possible synergies.
4200 THE CHAIRPERSON: And in terms of your library, it also seems to me like you're reinventing the wheel because, when you first appeared in front of us in Toronto, your panel consisted of Mr. Dave McLeod of NCI, one of the pre‑eminent ‑‑ I'm going to say ‑‑ experts on Aboriginal music in Canada, and he does the top 20 every week and certainly has been around Aboriginal music forever. And I'm sure his library, if you cooperated, would ‑‑ could also build ‑‑ you could build together.
4201 Ms Mosseau, you wanted to ‑‑
4202 UNIDENTIFIED SPEAKER: Turn your mic on.
4203 THE CHAIRPERSON: Like, I just constantly hear rebuilding, and it seems to me cooperation would be a far better way to go.
MOUSSEAU: If I can talk first about
APTN? APTN is an amazing channel. It is ‑‑ it's absolutely
needed to happen here in
4205 So right now when we look at creating our talk shows, we have to look at issues that are most affecting the urban Aboriginals. And then, you know, perhaps in the future when we can look at a larger collaboration, when we can ‑‑ instead of separating urban Aboriginals, reserve Aboriginals, Inuit, the North, and the different provinces, we can end up in a position where we're all together as one. And at that point APTN and AVR working together is ‑‑ it makes logical sense but, right now, we have to look at what our mandate is, and that is serving Aboriginal ‑‑ the urban Aboriginal.
4206 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you.
4207 You now have two minutes to convince us.
BENNETT: Sorry, could I just address a
couple of housekeeping matters? Sorry,
just a few quick clarifications. You
said today that you would ensure that no less than 2 percent of all programming
during a broadcast week would be spoken‑word programming in an Aboriginal
Canadian language. Is that a commitment
4209 MR. HILL: That is a commitment we're prepared to make.
4210 MS BENNETT: Okay, by condition of licence?
4211 MR. HILL: Yes.
4212 MS BENNETT: Okay, thanks. Now, earlier you talked with Commissioner Arpin about filing financial projections. My understanding is that there are no financial projections on the file, so could you file those today, maybe if you've got them with you, right after your presentation?
4213 MR. HILL: Yes, we have them with us and we can file them today.
‑‑‑ Undertaking / Engagement
4214 MS BENNETT: Okay. And similarly with the program descriptions, if you could file those at the same time? Okay. And the last part was documentation on the availability of funds. Would you have that information available today as well?
4215 MR. HILL: The availability of funds, what was that referring to?
4216 MS BENNETT: Well, you had a discussion with Commissioner Arpin about the various sources of funding that you are projecting, and I think you spoke with him about the possibility of filing some documentation ‑‑
4217 MR. HILL: Oh, okay.
4218 MS BENNETT: ‑‑ with respect to those sources?
4219 MR. HILL: Yes. Yes, but I don't think that we have all of that information today, but we can file that very quickly ‑‑ oh, we can? Oh, okay. Well, I guess ‑‑
4220 MS BENNETT: Well ‑‑
4221 MR. HILL: I ‑‑ I'm sorry, I stand corrected. We do have that information with us and we can file that.
4222 MS BENNETT: Okay, great. Thank you very much.
4223 MS MOUSSEAU: And I'll get that other document to you right away. I just have to go print it.
4224 MS BENNETT: Okay, thank you. That's it.
4225 THE CHAIRPERSON: Now two minutes.
4226 MR. HILL: Thank you, Madam Chair.
4227 I'd like to, I guess, talk about the importance of AVR and then, if we have time in the two minutes, I'd like to ask Lewis Cardinal to finish up.
mission of AVR is to improve the lives of Aboriginal people, and we think that
our role through radio broadcasting is a very important one to do that. There's ‑‑ currently exists
a market gap in
4229 AVR, in being virtually 100 percent Aboriginal, we believe that we are one of the leaders and will be one of the leaders in helping emerging Aboriginal talent, both spoken‑word talent and music talent.
4230 The dialogue that AVR would be able to provide regarding just a wide array of Aboriginal issues is extremely important to this community, and not only to hear the dialogue, but to participate in the dialogue as well.
4231 We would like to respectfully remind the Commission that it is in the Broadcast Act to provide for such a service as ‑‑ when that becomes possible.
will add to the diversity of the broadcasting here in
4233 And we don't believe that we're going to negatively impact any of the incumbents in any significant way, so I guess essentially that we believe we're an important piece ‑‑ part of improving lives of Aboriginals here in Regina. And Lewis, if ‑‑
4234 MR. CARDINAL: We're trying to reconnect our communities with each other. I just ‑‑ as a part of our historical understanding of Canada, we know that the major urban centres across Canada were built upon these areas where indigenous peoples gathered, where many nations came together and celebrated and traded and did various kinds of business together.
4236 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr. Hill.
4237 We will now take a 15‑minute break by my watch. Set your time. It is 25 to, so that will mean 10 to.
‑‑‑ Upon recessing at 1035 / Suspension à 1035
‑‑‑ Upon resuming at 1050 / Reprise à 1050
CHAIRPERSON: Order please. I want to welcome you. I want to, first, say that the time that we
spent on AVR is ‑‑ may have seemed an extraordinary amount of
time for one applicant. However, we have
three applications from AVR on this hearing; one for
4239 And the evidence we obtained was for the purposes of all three applications, so I don't wish anybody to feel that there was anything untoward about that time taken in questioning.
4240 Madam Secretary...?
4241 THE SECRETARY: Thank you, Madam Chair.
are now ready to proceed with item 16 on the agenda which is an application by
Natotawin Broadcasting Inc. to amend the licence of the Native radio program
undertaking CJLR‑FM, La Ronge,
licensee proposes to add an FM transmitter at
4244 Appearing for the applicant is Ms Deborah Charles, who will introduce her colleague. You will then have 20 minutes for your presentation. Ms Charles...?
PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION
4245 MS CHARLES: Good morning. (Native language spoken).
4246 My name is Deborah Charles. I'm the chief executive officer for Missinipi Broadcasting and I'm here making a presentation to the Commission today.
4247 My colleague is Darrell Prokopie. He's the director of sales and marketing, and we're here today to present our application.
4248 THE SECRETARY: Please go ahead with your presentation.
4249 MS CHARLES: Okay.
4250 COMMISSIONER WILLIAMS: Can I get Darrell's last name again, please? I didn't quite hear it.
4251 MR. PROKOPIE: Certainly. It's P‑R‑O‑K‑O‑P‑I‑E, pronounced Prokopie.
4252 COMMISSIONER WILLIAMS: Thank you.
4253 MS CHARLES: Tansi, edlanete, bonjour, good morning, ladies and gentlemen of the CRTC.
I want to thank the Commission for giving me the opportunity to be here to
speak to MBC's application for an RM rebroadcast transmitter to serve the
Aboriginal listening audience of
4255 We at MBC believe that the quality news and informational spoken word in Aboriginal languages, programming and entertainment by way of our Aboriginal musicials and performance artists are two of the most important ways to expose urban Canadian listening audiences to Aboriginal culture, philosophy, ideas, opinions, music and artists, and hence expand their appreciation of Canada's diverse cultures and peoples. That is why those elements are here ‑‑ are the core of our broadcast programs.
feels that the objectives for
feels that the ‑‑
approval of our application so that they may provide Aboriginal language radio
feels that the MBC/Natotawin application for a rebroadcast transmitter to carry
our programs to the Aboriginal and non‑Aboriginal listeners of
Canadian Broadcast Act states that all programming should be of a high standard,
balanced on matters of public concern, relevant to local communities, and
4261 MBC/Natotawin believes that in many respects it actually has been raised ‑‑ raising and indeed establishing the bar on the standards of the radio broadcasting relevant to the Aboriginal people on this ‑‑ of this country.
4262 I know that MBC is unique in its dedication to addressing those concerns relevant to the Aboriginal communities in ‑‑ of this province.
4263 It is MBC's view that it is only fitting that the CRTC would regulate Aboriginal radio with respect to the content offered in a manner similar to the regulation in place for non‑Aboriginal broadcasting undertakings, but we also believe that there must be an appreciation of inherent cultural differences between the Aboriginal and mainstream segments of society and how our people perceive and interpret what is offered to them over the airways.
4264 We at MBC seek to refine and improve the standards of broadcasting content directed towards our people, not to dismiss, abrogate or lower them. Most importantly, we know that Aboriginal people want to hear Aboriginal broadcasters speaking and understanding their own language, providing them with radio programs that they can relate to and easily comprehend.
4265 Respectfully our application for a licence for a rebroadcast transmitter carries with it our commitment to honour in all aspects of news and information content and Aboriginal language usage and promotion of Aboriginal artists.
4266 I do not wish to speak at length about the quality of MBC's radio service in the short time available, but I have made provisions today to all the members of the Commission to receive a copy of my speaking notes here, and also other notes that clearly outline our high standard of service and historical commitment of MBC to the provision of the best of radio, all listeners Aboriginal and otherwise.
4267 Specifically MBC by its application makes the following commitments and guarantees: MBC guarantees the Commission the daily provision of Aboriginally relevant newscasts, information and entertainment content. MBC guarantees the Commission that it will provide significantly more dedicated Aboriginal language programming and the promotion of and airplay of Aboriginal artists and performance ‑‑ performers in the daily programs than any other radio station in the province can, could or would provide.
guarantees the Commission that it will provide these culturally and
linguistically relevant broadcasting programs to the Aboriginal community of
guarantees the Commission that it will ensure the inclusion of content of
specific concern to
4270 MBC guarantees the Commission that it will uphold to any ‑‑ all rules of the Broadcasting Act including a commitment to cover, fulfil the Canadian content requirements.
4271 With respect to five issues that the Commission stated they wished to address in their correspondence as at October 16th, two ‑‑ 2006, I received a letter and I'll go through them in point form the way it was written to me.
addition to the English, MBC utilizes three main spoken Aboriginal languages
4273 MBC also broadcasts Aboriginal language features throughout the day and during weekend programmings ‑‑ programs. Our Monday through Friday Aboriginal language program ‑‑ programs are the daily Missinipi Achimowin program hosted and presented in the Cree and Michif languages, and the Dene ‑‑ and the daily Missinipi Dene Honi programming presented in the Dene language. Both Achimowin and Dene Honi programs are inclusive of hourly newscasts, summaries that are inclusive of all local, regional, provincial, national and international news and are delivered in Cree, Dene and Michif in ‑‑ for our audience.
4274 Our Aboriginal language programming ‑‑ programs are also inclusive of open‑line presentations where listeners can voice their opinions in Aboriginal languages on a broad spectrum of issues. The Achimowin and Dene Honi programs also deliver intensive informational content on topics that cover the gamut of Canadian Aboriginal listeners' interests in health, education, environment, justice, culture, languages, history and safety to major and minor political issues along with numerous other audience concerns.
4275 MBC has also hosted and aired hundreds of open‑line broadcast and talk show programming using Aboriginal language in the different dialects and provides in-depth, on location programming for community gatherings and events of importance to our audience.
4276 Through these and other distinctive programming approaches, MBC offers a platform for all ages to express themselves in their language and their dialects, and to be heard from elders to youth.
4277 MBC also presents its word of the day programming several times a day throughout the week, giving listeners the ‑‑ an opportunity to come to know, understand Aboriginal language used in everyday speech.
is prepared to offer expanded language programming to other Aboriginal language
4279 I'll just give the floor to him.
4280 MR. PROKOPIE: Thank you.
4281 Aboriginal language vocal music. MBC sponsors and promotes Aboriginal artists through consistent airplay 24/7 and significantly supports Aboriginal musicians and singers in the way that most matters, via our playlist.
will continue to promote Aboriginal artists to the people of
a quarter of music played on a daily basis on MBC is by Aboriginal artists,
many of whom are locally based. MBC has
provided Aboriginal artist in northern
4284 MBC has hosted Aboriginal talent searches that have been simulcast on our network since 1994 and we have sponsored and broadcast the Voices of the North talent show, an Aboriginal talent showcase. MBC's talent search top prize is studio time and the songs are then broadcast on MBC.
4285 Over 100 performers have benefited from MBC's support of developing artistry through talent searches and showcases. Additionally, MBC has spent its entire operational history as a promoter of national Aboriginal recording and performance artists as a matter of cultural respect and dedication.
reality is that MBC is the main provider of access to an audience for many
Aboriginal artists and cultural producers.
We have presented their talent to the Aboriginal and non‑Aboriginal
listening audience in
on to cultural programming. MBC has a culturally
attuned 28‑member staff, including a news and Aboriginal language
production staff of seven, all of whom are Aboriginal. The majority of them speak Cree, Dene or
Michif, and some speak more than one Aboriginal language. For more than two decades MBC has employed
the majority of Aboriginal speaking broadcasters in
4288 Two of our staff have been chosen as national Aboriginal role models in the past 12 years. We have an honour roll of over 40 board members and over 100 broadcast personnel coming out of the cultural milieu of Aboriginal society who have served and contributed to the growth of MBC as an organization over the past 22 years.
has created a legacy of unique cultural and linguistic heritage and its
operations to date represent a genuine success story for the Aboriginal people
4290 Our cultural programming covers and reports in‑depth on everything from Aboriginal spirituality, folklore, legends and stories, to traditional medicine use and Aboriginal food preparation and survival skills, along with the inherent viewpoints, opinions, ideas, and philosophy that they all entail.
are the only broadcaster in
4292 As an example, MBC began reporting live with its own reporters from the International Indigenous Games more than a decade ago. We do all of this with a heavy emphasis on Aboriginal language use and presentation both by our staff and by the Aboriginal persons with whom we are actively engaged with in covering the story.
at MBC are mandated and entrusted to bring Aboriginal culture, languages,
ideas, heritage and their perspective to the people of
4294 Our projected audience. MBC, by its very nature, is a non‑traditional broadcaster and we have always avoided excessive commercial style, promotional and glamorization of our service and operations.
4295 In each and every community, we have grown to serve ‑‑ in each community that we have grown to serve, we have relied on the word of mouth of the Moccasin Telegraph in building and growing our audience, thus we project our listener numbers to be low to nominal in the initial stages of providing our programs to the Regina listening audience.
4296 We do not expect to see major shifts in listener demographics. Our experience to date indicates that there will be an evolving awareness of what MBC has to offer the Aboriginal and non‑Aboriginal listeners and that there will be a corresponding, reflective positive rise in the MBC listening audience numbers. We anticipate having a minimum of 20,000 listeners by the third year of operation.
4297 In making these loose projections, MBC has taken into account the expanding Aboriginal population demographics presented by Stats Canada and have balanced that with other known quantities such as the strength of our Aboriginal entities and organizations in Regina, and the participation rate and contact with urban Aboriginal society that they have experienced.
we move on to our anticipated revenue projections. MBC anticipates minimal economic revenues to
be derived from its establishment of the
seize its ‑‑ sees its responsibility to providing a service to
the Aboriginal audience of
has no immediate plans to pursue advertising revenues through active
solicitation as there are no plans in place to hire a sales representative to
be based out of
provide exact revenue increments at this time would be quite difficult as we
feel that any immediate gains will be derived from clients purchasing the MBC
radio network and not necessarily the local
is also the reality that MBC has only so much air time to sell. We're dealing with one clock. Because MBC is many things to many people, we
need to make our advertising available to all we serve. The small community event in northern
I did include some projections for you.
These are probably on the aggressive side as we move into the third
year. At the completion of year one,
I've indicated approximately $30,000 in revenue. Keep in mind, we currently are getting some
advertising dollars out of the
4304 At the completion of year two I've doubled that figure to show $60,000 in anticipated revenue and the completion of year three is when we are hoping to cover off our hard costs that we would incur through this expansion through the establishment of technology and the ongoing operations. So at year three, I did pen that in at $100,000.
4305 I will pass it back to Deborah for her closing statement.
4306 Thank you.
4307 MS CHARLES: Thank you, Darrell.
closing, may I say to the Commission that MBC has also ‑‑ has
laboured through more than 20 years in building a community based Aboriginal
radio network utilize ‑‑ utilizing highly skilled Aboriginal
broadcasters and linguists to serve our people, my people. Through a measured study approach we are
growing in a meaningful presence for the Aboriginal radio audience in
4309 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, and thank you for coming.
4310 I have a few questions for you, not that you didn't very completely and very well cover all of our issues raised in our notice.
4311 Now, do either one of you ‑‑ are either one of you involved in the programming side at all?
4312 MR. PROKOPIE: Not to a great extent, but I'm sure between the two of us we could ‑‑
4313 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay, subject to the fact that you're not the experts?
4314 MR. PROKOPIE: Right.
4315 THE CHAIRPERSON: We just wanted to know ‑‑ you have old time music on Saturday and Sunday nights. Do you know what it is? Is it old rock? Old country?
4316 MR. PROKOPIE: No, it's old classic country. It's the George Jones, the Buck Owens, the traditional country.
4317 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mmhmm, okay.
4318 MR. PROKOPIE: The Saturday mornings, yes, and Sundays.
4319 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yeah. And then you have on Wednesday night '70s and '80s music. What kind of music is that?
4320 MR. PROKOPIE: That is primarily of the rock nature. That's more rock and roll.
4321 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay.
4322 MR. PROKOPIE: And again, if I can maybe just interject, because MBC is many things to many people. We do have a 5 to 95 year‑old demographic, so our programming tries to incorporate something for everybody over the course of our broadcast week.
4323 THE CHAIRPERSON: And you do broadcast Aboriginal language music?
4324 MR. PROKOPIE: Yes, we do.
4325 THE CHAIRPERSON: How much would you say ‑‑ how much of it would you say you do out of the total music?
4326 MR. PROKOPIE: Oh, I would really be shooting blind.
4327 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay.
4328 MR. PROKOPIE: Over the course of a day, you know, I'm quite confident in saying that probably in the neighbourhood of half a dozen songs would be sung in the Aboriginal language, and quite often those are aired during our Aboriginal languages programming. Not always; they could be requested during one of our two request shows that we have each day but probably in the neighbourhood of half a dozen per day.
4329 THE CHAIRPERSON: And are those all Canadian, the Aboriginal songs, the language songs?
4330 MR. PROKOPIE: Yes, they are.
CHAIRPERSON: Okay. Now, right now, what kind of news coverage do
you have of
PROKOPIE: We do not. There has been some discussions with some
organizations and individuals to have them supply us information. I know there are plans, once we get up and
running and the Moccasin Telegraph takes effect and there is an awareness of
ultimately putting some stringers or people into
4333 THE CHAIRPERSON: When I saw this question that staff asked me to read, I was asking myself whether Saskatoon is really more the ‑‑ Saskatoon/Prince Albert/La Ronge is more the ‑‑ what would I say? The ‑‑ well, Saskatoon particularly, the political capital because the FSIN is there, and so I was sort of thinking that coverage of the legislature here would probably be secondary to ‑‑ of interest to your listeners.
4334 MR. PROKOPIE: Of the provincial legislature? Yes, probably it would be secondary to our audience.
4335 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yeah.
PROKOPIE: If it was an FSIN Assembly
that was being held here in
4337 THE CHAIRPERSON: At the elections, right, yeah.
4338 MR. PROKOPIE: Right. We had two of our language announcers from La Ronge attend for the ‑‑ a few days and provide live programming for three hours each afternoon back to our audience in both the Cree and Dene languages.
CHAIRPERSON: Okay. And so the kind of programming that you would
4340 MR. PROKOPIE: Primarily, yes. When ‑‑ it doesn't have to be necessarily a breaking news story or something that has dire consequences, but just a story of interest that is not maybe high on the list of newscasts that you may hear elsewhere.
4341 Certainly once our stringers come on board, we will have a ‑‑ you know, a thumb on the pulse, so to speak, to develop that.
4342 THE CHAIRPERSON: Do you follow the powwow circuit at all?
PROKOPIE: We are slowly developing
that. Powwow is a relatively new
phenomenon in northern
4344 We don't necessarily follow the circuit in terms of providing programming from, but we certainly get involved through sponsorship of and promotion of.
4345 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mmhmm, okay. Now, your language programming, you say over 20 hours and the daily Missinipi Achimowin program is from 1 to 3 ‑‑ I've got your schedule here from the site ‑‑ Monday through Friday, am I correct?
4346 MR. PROKOPIE: (Nods head yes.)
4347 THE CHAIRPERSON: And then the daily Missinipi Dene Honi program, and that is ‑‑ I'm losing it. I can't find it ‑‑ 3 to 4?
PROKOPIE: That is correct. I may also ‑‑ should
interject. That ‑‑ what
you've just read, that's the network. So
the entire network receives those three hours of programming. We do have the capability and we do split‑feed
the far north communities, the
4349 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay. So Ray Campbell would start, in fact, an hour earlier?
4350 MR. PROKOPIE: Correct.
4351 THE CHAIRPERSON: And provide the two hours for the Dene area?
4352 MR. PROKOPIE: Correct.
4353 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay. And then ‑‑ I was fascinated by this. You give the news in all ‑‑ in English, Cree, Michif and Dene?
4354 MR. PROKOPIE: Yeah, we do.
4355 THE CHAIRPERSON: And you do it by split feed or how do you do it?
4356 MR. PROKOPIE: No.
4357 THE CHAIRPERSON: Is ‑‑
4358 MR. PROKOPIE: That ‑‑ that's network, network news. So at 1 o'clock when our Cree show comes on board, they would do a top‑of‑the‑hour newscast that, you know, may be very similar to what was done during the 12 o'clock English informational hour.
4359 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay.
4360 MR. PROKOPIE: And they'll read that news in the Cree language, and then that happens again for the Dene hour.
4361 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay. And in both the Vern Lewis and Mike Durocher hour and the Missinipi Dene Honi hour, there's music and speaking?
4362 MR. PROKOPIE: Yes, there's music and speaking. The speaking can be anything from information whether it be again an event or a situation or a story that's out there, to just things of cultural relevance. It's not necessarily chalked full of hard hitting information all the time. It's of relevance to the audience that it's speaking to.
4363 THE CHAIRPERSON: And would you have an idea of the percentage of music and spoken word in those hours?
4364 MS CHARLES: I'd say 40 percent.
4365 THE CHAIRPERSON: You have to put your mic on.
4366 MS CHARLES: I'd say 40 percent in an hour.
4367 THE CHAIRPERSON: Forty percent music?
4368 MS CHARLES: Yeah.
4369 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay, mmhmm. And then you have the 9 to 11 morning Cree on Sunday, and that's entirely in Cree?
4370 MR. PROKOPIE: Cree and with some Michif thrown in there, yes.
4371 THE CHAIRPERSON: Oh, okay, okay. And you do broadcast a hundred and ‑‑ 168 hours week?
4372 MR. PROKOPIE: We do.
4373 THE CHAIRPERSON: What do you do at night? What's your programming from midnight on?
4374 MR. PROKOPIE: It's in‑house voice tracking, utilizing our own talent that we have on staff.
4375 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay, mmhmm. So is that the only voice tracking you've got from midnight to six or is it ‑‑
4376 MR. PROKOPIE: No, that is it.
4377 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay. And any syndicated programming?
4378 MR. PROKOPIE: We do, for our youth, carry a syndicated dance show on Saturday nights as part of our Saturday night house party for the youth and we do subscribe to a syndicated dance program that airs, I believe, between 9 and 10 on Saturday evenings.
4379 We have syndicated programming ‑‑ Paul Harvey, you know, as an example ‑‑ over our noon information package, so we have a couple of items that are syndicated, yes.
4380 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mmhmm, okay. Now, you've heard AVR and how they describe their programming. Have you ever listened online to AVR?
4381 MS CHARLES: No.
4382 MR. PROKOPIE: I've tried.
4383 THE CHAIRPERSON: Oh. And ‑‑
4384 MR. PROKOPIE: And no, I have not.
4385 THE CHAIRPERSON: Have not been successful, okay. Could you explain how you believe you are different from them, if you think you are?
PROKOPIE: Well, I guess it starts at the
grassroots. MBC was created by the
people of northern
4387 So MBC basically ‑‑ we don't make a move without our audience, the people that we serve telling us to make that move, and they tell us by way of e‑mail, phone calls. They tell us by way of the delegates that they send to our annual general meeting from which our 11 board of directors is elected. So they certainly pass on their concerns and what they would like MBC to evolve into through our board members, and that's passed on down through our CEO and senior management.
are very much focused on the people that we serve. The information is of most importance. MBC is about bringing people to the
people. We don't wish to be anything
more than we've currently applied for, and that's a provincial network to
service the Aboriginal population of
4389 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yeah, I think so, yeah. Do you think ‑‑ well, what would be the impact on you if we gave you a rebroadcast licence here and if AVR were also given a licence? What would be the impact on you?
4390 MR. PROKOPIE: That's a tough question, and I don't really know the answer to that. I believe initially, like anything new, there's always a rush to check out what's new, whether that be turning the dial or tuning in through the Internet. I ‑‑ you know, certainly there will be a learning curve by the audience and ultimately ‑‑ you know, they will ultimately decide what is going to best suit them.
feel that, again, through our programming, through our roots, through our
governance that, you know, over time, we will ‑‑ we will be
the Aboriginal broadcaster of
4392 THE CHAIRPERSON: And I have asked myself I must say, time and time again if there is a difference between a "northern or rural Aboriginal culture and an urban Aboriginal culture", and I am ‑‑ I'm on two sides of this. It seems to me the thing that brings you together is the same culture as you've always had, whether you're urban or rural.
the other hand, it may be easier to retain your culture if you are on a reserve
or in northern
4394 MR. PROKOPIE: I don't know if the culture is different so much as how often and regularly the culture has gone back to or utilized. I think the culture tends to maybe be lost in the urban centres because you don't walk down the street and see your friends and your neighbours who are speaking to you within the language.
I think quite often First Nations people who relocate from the smaller
communities or northern communities tend to climatize to the surroundings
around them. I know that's not
necessarily what they wish to do, and it's very nice to hear the comments that
we get at MBC, is "Oh, I just love tuning into MBC because I sit back and
I'm at home." You know, so whether
they've ‑‑ they're now in
4396 But to answer your question, I think there is some culture lost. It's not by design; it's just by environment.
CHAIRPERSON: And your ‑‑
the reactions you've been receiving in
PROKOPIE: Well, what we understand is we
have the best youth programming out there, and I heard that many times just
last week when I was in
coming up, I believe this weekend, out of our ‑‑ our Saturday
night house party DJ will be in Saskatoon MCing and hosting an event for the
4400 THE CHAIRPERSON: So ‑‑ and then do you think once you got them hooked on the evening ‑‑ on the Saturday evening you can then take them further in terms of getting back to the ‑‑ their culture? Like, how do you do that?
4401 MR. PROKOPIE: Well, it's certainly the hope that ‑‑ you know, I don't know if we can take them back, but lest we never forget. And, you know, we certainly do things that, again, because they're youth, you know, it ‑‑ there's still a culture that surrounds what they're doing and where they've come from.
4402 And everything we do keeps referring back to the culture and where you've come from, living a positive, healthy lifestyle, respecting your elders, whatever the message may be. You know, we plug away. It's that constant drip of water that wears away at the stone.
4403 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yeah. And you were talking about the fact that your programming is sort of ‑‑ what's the word ‑‑ done based on demand. So if you were down here, and I see on it ‑‑ I don't ‑‑ there's a ‑‑ on the fourth page of your presentation you were talking about Word of the Day and you say, "MBC is prepared to offer expanded language programming and other Aboriginal languages used in Saskatchewan as the opportunity presents itself."
4404 So the issue would be that somebody would e‑mail, write you or come to your meeting and say "I want programming in Saulteaux" or whatever ‑‑ Saulteaux, yeah ‑‑ and then you would try to do it. Is that the concept?
PROKOPIE: That's exactly the
concept. And as we speak here, you know,
we're working towards even ‑‑ you know, barring some miracle
that we don't get our application, we still plan on incorporating Saulteaux
Word of the Day for our
4406 It's something that's been brought to our attention and it's something we're working towards and right now we're just trying to put the pieces in place and find out how we can best do it from a technical point of view. And as ‑‑ so basically we are working towards incorporating the Saulteaux into our Word of the Day as we speak.
4407 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mmhmm. Tell me about this foundation, the Missinipi Youth Foundation. It's created by Missinipi?
CHARLES: Yes, it is and it was incorporated
in 1998. And what we did is we
incorporated Missinipi Youth Foundation and we offered scholarships to First
Nations/Aboriginal people to attend university, U of S, U of R,
4409 Now, we also offer small local community radio stations. We offer training programs in their respective communities and then they start their local radio stations at that level, and then most of the time it's on our transmitter.
4410 However, back to your question, yeah, we've incorporated that a while ago and we continue to do that and we continue to offer scholarships, and that's part of the Saturday night program that we offer to the youth as well.
4411 THE CHAIRPERSON: So the money comes from your profits? Is that the idea, and it's put into the foundation?
4412 MR. PROKOPIE: Yeah.
4413 THE CHAIRPERSON: And then the scholarships are given out?
4414 MR. PROKOPIE: (Nods head yes.)
4415 THE CHAIRPERSON: So to date, how many scholarships in journalism or broadcasting have you given out?
4416 MS CHARLES: Gees, I don't have ‑‑
4417 THE CHAIRPERSON: And any number ‑‑
4418 MS CHARLES: ‑‑ a number on that.
4419 THE CHAIRPERSON: How many did you give out last year?
4420 MS CHARLES: Seven. Seven each year, and when we first started, it was one or two or three. I haven't kept track. However, I do believe there's about eight of them with degrees now. And then I have ‑‑ the three I offered this year will be completing their degrees, so it's growing.
4421 THE CHAIRPERSON: And do you give them a job or does the APTN grab them?
4422 MS CHARLES: It depends what broadcasting, if they further into television or radio or print. However, there is some that come on board with APTN. I'm also on the board there as well. But, yeah, we've recruited some of the students from that initiation.
4423 MR. PROKOPIE: And that is probably our ultimate goal and objective is our in‑house recruiting. There ‑‑ we find quite often there is a lack of trained broadcasters with an Aboriginal background. And because we used to have, and still to this day, continue to have some difficulty in securing professional talent, we thought, well, let's maybe help create them by offering these scholarships to post‑secondary students who are going into a communications/journalism type field. That may give us a bit of a pool to draw from down the years, so there was some very selfish background behind that as well. We were hoping to utilize that talent.
4424 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mmhmm. Tell me, where are your offices? Are they in La Ronge or on the reserve, on the band ‑‑
CHARLES: No, we're not on the
reserve. We're ‑‑ we
got a head office and the ‑‑ in La Ronge on
4426 THE CHAIRPERSON: Because what ‑‑ I was thinking that part of the advantage could be that you'd be tax free if you were on the reserve. That would be an advantage for anybody in terms of recruitment, you know.
4427 MR. PROKOPIE: It would, but it would challenge our governance, we believe.
4428 THE CHAIRPERSON: All right. I get your point, mmhmm.
4429 MR. PROKOPIE: Again, our board is derived from members at large of the community, and to put ourselves with ‑‑ within a First Nation or a community, even if the ‑‑ even if it is a reality, the perception would be that ‑‑ where there's an affiliation that perhaps we could be nudged or pushed into a certain direction, so we've never aligned ourselves with any organization or group in that manner.
4430 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mmhmm, you and NCI. Now, MBC Television, I didn't realize there was a television portion of it, and it tells stories and shows to ‑‑ you know, shows to maintain culture. What do they actually do?
CHARLES: I'll just get ‑‑
give you a bit of history. Yateyaski(ph)
Productions was incorporated in 1980 ‑‑ 1998, and we produce
half‑hour documentaries by and for, about our people in northern
4432 THE CHAIRPERSON: Right.
4433 MS CHARLES: We air it. However, we downsized it to six and we get our funding from Telefilm and other funders, so we're still doing it.
4434 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay. Now you, Ms Charles, are on the board of APTN and so do you have some sort of a cooperative arrangement with them at all?
CHARLES: Yes, I am on the board. I am appointed to that board. We ‑‑ the ‑‑
there's ten organizations across northern
4436 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mmhmm. And do you receive any ‑‑ anything from APTN in terms of being able to use the news they've gathered or anything like that?
4437 MS CHARLES: For regional news?
4438 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mmhmm.
4439 MS CHARLES: We've delivered some, but it's not consistent. It has to be a national ‑‑
4440 THE CHAIRPERSON: Relevance.
4441 MS CHARLES: ‑‑ relevance. Most of the news is regional for us. However, we do carry national, and I'm in the process of working on a newscast from my office with a regional broadcaster, not a national, because we already have the national.
4442 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay. And WAAB, Western Association of Aboriginal Broadcasters, you're a member?
4443 MS CHARLES: Yes, I am. I am a founding member. A couple years ago I was ‑‑ incorporated a national group. However, I changed that to the Western Association of Aboriginal Broadcasters, whereas the western groups come together and meet, which is NCI of Manitoba, MBC of Saskatchewan, AMMSA of Alberta, and NBT of BC, and we have been working together for the past year, face‑to‑face conference calls, and our first live broadcast is this Friday on the Aboriginal Peoples Music Choice Awards, so that's our first broadcast.
4444 THE CHAIRPERSON: Oh, so you're going to all broadcast it? Is that the idea?
4445 MS CHARLES: Yes ‑‑
4446 THE CHAIRPERSON: Oh, okay.
4447 MS CHARLES: ‑‑ we will.
4448 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay, mmhmm. And then you have plans for further sort of cooperation and that sort of thing?
4449 MS CHARLES: Yes. And the next live broadcast I would like to do is the residential school early release payments or their first instalment and the abuse that continues to happen with the elders, and none of it really went to healing, so that's the second initial broad ‑‑ live broadcast that I want to do.
4450 MR. PROKOPIE: If I could just interject? We are also currently, and have been for probably the last three, four months anyway, been airing a national top 30 Aboriginal countdown which is put together, produced, hosted by NCI but is delivered to the four ‑‑ the other three groups within WAAB, and we air that twice a week as well. So that is also a WAAB initiative.
4451 THE CHAIRPERSON: So he's up to 30 now?
4452 MR. PROKOPIE: Yes.
4453 THE CHAIRPERSON: Last time I talked to him it was 20. Now, as ‑‑ I wanted to talk to you about your revenue. As a percentage of the total of your revenue, how much does advertising consist?
4454 MR. PROKOPIE: Well, I would need to let Deb address that one because also we do have fundraising, our bingo operations.
4455 THE CHAIRPERSON: Your bingo, yeah, mmhmm.
4456 MR. PROKOPIE: And I'm not sure exactly where those percentages lie. Right now I'm thinking that it's probably along the lines of 50 percent, give or take a little bit. Fifty percent would be advertising driven.
4457 THE CHAIRPERSON: And the bingo is the other 50; is that ‑‑
4458 MR. PROKOPIE: Yeah.
4459 THE CHAIRPERSON: Oh, yeah. So you're self‑sustaining?
4460 MR. PROKOPIE: No, the ‑‑
4461 THE CHAIRPERSON: No?
4462 MR. PROKOPIE: ‑‑ we do get ‑‑ there is some national funding through NNBAP.
4463 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay, mmhmm.
4464 MR. PROKOPIE: But that's been on a steady decline over a number of years, and we're certainly building towards 100 percent self‑sustenance. We think that day is probably coming, and we've been building towards that for a while.
CHAIRPERSON: Mmhmm. Tell me about your transmitter coverage of
4467 MR. PROKOPIE: No, we're not.
4468 THE CHAIRPERSON: No. Are you Estevan way, Weyburn way?
4469 MR. PROKOPIE: Carlyle/White Bear.
4470 THE CHAIRPERSON: Oh, right. You are, yeah. Okay.
4471 MR. PROKOPIE: Carlyle/White Bear. We're currently also in Keeseekoose, but I'm sure you've ‑‑
4472 THE CHAIRPERSON: And those are all low power, right?
4473 MR. PROKOPIE: Right.
4474 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yeah. Now ‑‑
PROKOPIE: And we have just been recently
4476 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yeah. North of Prince Albert is your coverage equivalent to or better than CBC's?
4477 MR. PROKOPIE: Better than.
CHAIRPERSON: Any idea of your share of
the market in
4479 MR. PROKOPIE: No.
CHAIRPERSON: No. And is it fair to say that your numbers here,
your revenue projections, Mr. Prokopie ‑‑ Prokopie, is close
to what happened in
PROKOPIE: That would be a more
aggressive pace than what has happened in
4482 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you.
4483 That's all my questions. Commissioner Pennefather would like to ask you some questions.
4484 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you, Madam Chair.
4485 Just one question. I notice in your letter of August 16 you talk about your ever expanding listening audience of over 100,000 in 60 locations and the Internet. Can you give us a sense of the Internet and how many hits, what proportion of the audience is coming through the website or the Internet?
4486 MR. PROKOPIE: The portion of our audience coming through the website would be very minimal. And again, I'm not the technical expert, but I believe we have only 30 ports or something where only 30 people can be online at any given time.
4487 So as for our hits, I was quite surprised to hear that we are getting in excess of 5,000 hits a month. I've ‑‑ no, I think I'm actually very low. I heard this number from our technical person not long ago, and we were all very surprised at the number of hits we were getting on our website.
4488 I don't necessarily believe they're all going to the streaming audio. We ‑‑ a lot of our news stories get put onto our website. There's a message board. There's some interactive stuff there, so our website is being very ‑‑ it being hit very regularly, but the percentage of our audience coming from it, I think, would be minimal.
4489 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Good distinction. And they were just all in one line, so that's a very interesting distinction. Thank you for that. Thank you, Madam Chair.
4490 THE CHAIRPERSON: Vice‑chair Arpin...?
ARPIN: You ‑‑ you've
been speaking about your youth programming and particularly what you do on the
Saturday and you were talking about the reaction in
4492 MR. PROKOPIE: We haven't found the ruler yet that we can lay down and measure that. Again, just by the requests we get, just by the number of messages on our message board on our website, we feel that that number is strong and continues to grows ‑‑ to grow.
4493 Again, everybody puts their pants on one leg at a time, so the music that the Aboriginal youth are grooving to on Saturday night is also the music that the non‑Aboriginal youth cannot access and find anywhere else, so we truly believe we've got a good portion of them. Unfortunately, like, I cannot give you any measurement.
4494 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: But you know that you're getting a reaction from the audience and ‑‑
4495 MR. PROKOPIE: We certainly know that, yes.
ARPIN: And you could expect the same
thing here from ‑‑ in
4497 MR. PROKOPIE: We're anticipating that fully, yes.
4498 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Fully. Now, I've been looking at the financial report that you have been filing with the CRTC in which you're saying that you're probably somewhere 50/50 between local advertising and other revenues.
4499 Now, our reports are showing only other revenues. Is it the ‑‑ we're trying to measure the performance of advertising in this country, and is it because you'd ‑‑ I really didn't investigate the question before coming to the hearing on this sort of material while you were talking, looking specifically at the information that I have, which is ‑‑ and is it the way it's reported or is it the ‑‑ a problem that you have in the reporting the ‑‑ to the CRTC not splitting what is advertising and what is other revenues? Or is it at the CRTC that we have a problem?
4500 I'm just asking the question and looking at staff, if they also have an answer. The ‑‑ are you aware of the type of report that you're sending on an annual basis?
4501 MR. PROKOPIE: No, I can't say I'm fully aware. Deb may be able to answer this more specifically. I think maybe what may be happening is, within MBC we have a number of companies that all funnel back to MBC. MBC is the mother ship. I represent an organization Tucho(ph) Enterprises which is our advertising arm, our revenue arm. We're here on behalf of Natotawin Broadcasting today, which actually gets the advertising that we sell on the air and provides our programming.
4502 So, you know, there's a number of revenue sources coming from the individual companies that ultimately end up in MBC, and that's probably what you're seeing.
4503 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: And then they do distribute that revenues to each of the units that MBC is operating?
4504 MR. PROKOPIE: Correct.
4505 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: And that's why they will not consider it as advertising but will put it in the other revenue category? That ‑‑
4506 MR. PROKOPIE: Yeah.
4507 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Well, that satisfies my question.
4508 MR. PROKOPIE: All right.
4509 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: Thank you. Thank you, Mrs. Chair.
4510 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Commissioner Williams...?
WILLIAMS: Thank you, Madam Chair. I'm just reading through your information
files to learn a bit more about Natotawin Broadcasting. It says you own and operate over 70 broadcast
transmitters throughout the
many people do you estimate or what percentage of the
4513 MR. PROKOPIE: I think in the big picture, you know, we're somewhere ‑‑ we truly believe ‑‑ in that 10 and 15 percent. Now, as you move from region to region, that number could be as high as 95 percent.
4514 We know that there are in excess of 70,000 people north of the NAD line. We feel ‑‑
4515 COMMISSIONER WILLIAMS: What is ‑‑
4516 MR. PROKOPIE: ‑‑ that was ‑‑
4517 COMMISSIONER WILLIAMS: ‑‑ what is MAD? Is it like the Mason‑Dickson line or something or ‑‑
4518 MR. PROKOPIE: Oh, it's basically ‑‑ I believe it's called the north ‑‑ Northern Allowance District which basically divides the province into two. If you're from north of the line, there's certain concessions there for you and such.
north of the NAD line, we know that there is in excess of 70,000 people living
there. As we go across to our urban
centres, we know
truly believe and feel that we are able to speak, and are speaking, to a large
majority of the First Nations people in
WILLIAMS: Okay. Missinipi, I guess that refers to the
4522 What is Natotawin? What's the meaning of Natotawin? Why did you choose that name?
4523 MS CHARLES: Missinipi means big water in Cree, and Natotawin means listen in Cree.
4524 COMMISSIONER WILLIAMS: Listen?
4525 MS CHARLES: Yeah.
4526 COMMISSIONER WILLIAMS: Okay, I'll try to do my best.
‑‑‑ Laughter / Rires
WILLIAMS: There's been some discussion
in this hearing on the economic state of the
note in your information and ‑‑ and I'm a little bit confused
on your revenue side, as was Vice‑Chair Arpin, but that the PBIT that you
reported for 2005 was 26 percent. That's
your profit before interest and tax of 26 percent, compared to a 7 percent PBIT
4529 Why has your station become so popular and financially successful, given your extensive serving area and the many transmitters and the associated higher costs of serving so many communities? Why do you think that is the case that you can operate so profitably being so widespread and serving so many?
4530 MR. PROKOPIE: Well, I think first we should take that as a compliment.
4531 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes.
4532 MR. PROKOPIE: We run a tight ship. We don't have bodies just sitting around waiting for something to do. We're very multi‑tasking. We have people that wear many hats. We have a very strong controller and a very strong board who ensures that our fiscal responsibility is something that is watched consistently.
4533 I don't know if I can add much more to that other than it's something that we pay attention to because, as I said earlier, we don't know if the few dollars that we currently get through Heritage Canada are going to be available to us down the road, and we need ensure that we have money to put up new transmitters in communities when requested. We have money to help train a community radio station, so it's just ‑‑ it's good management, I believe.
WILLIAMS: What is your opinion of the economic
state of the
PROKOPIE: I guess it depends on who you
listen to over the last couple days would maybe determine what one really
believes. I think
know, as for the actual health of the market of
4538 So that's sort of the best uneducated answer I can give you is ‑‑ you know, I don't believe things are always as bad as we're led on to believe ‑‑ keeping in mind we are in Saskatchewan, and that's the nature of our beast.
4539 So, you know, I think through diligence and through providing the service that people want and providing good value in what you're presenting to them, the economics will take care of themselves providing that, you know, you're not greedy and don't have visions of, you know, making big money overnight.
WILLIAMS: Earlier this morning you heard
AVR's eloquent presentation stressing the need for a national Aboriginal
broadcaster, and they also indicated that they were supportive of your efforts
4541 Do you think a national Aboriginal network would provide value to Saskatchewan Aboriginals similar to that provided by mainstream Canadian national networks, like CBC, to all Canadians? Is there value in a national network, I guess is the question?
4542 MR. PROKOPIE: I'm not sure if I see the value, and I try not to look at this through rose‑coloured glasses or with blinders on. I'm not sure what the value would be. I think, you know, we keep hearing in this day and age that traditional radio is in trouble because of the Internet and because of satellite radio and because of this and this and this.
4543 And I believe that the groups that have spoken to you over the last couple of days are saying there is a future in radio, and that's because we can still provide the local weather. We can still talk about the community event that's happening down the street. We still cover stories that have relevance to our everyday lives, and I think ultimately that's where our strength lies and perhaps maybe where some of the strength would be lost in a national network.
4544 COMMISSIONER WILLIAMS: In your opinion, are the interests of rural and herbal ‑‑ rural and urban Aboriginals identical or are there some different interests given the different environments that they live in, in smaller and larger communities and in communities where they may be a dominant demographic in the population and in others where there may be a minority? Are there differences?
4545 MR. PROKOPIE: There definitely are some differences and as, you know, I had mentioned earlier, quite often when you move into an urban setting, a lot of the culture you grew up with is lost.
4546 But also when it comes to our programming, you ‑‑ we talked about MBC setting up at a trappers festival to provide programming. Well, I can tell you there probably isn't a lot of people in Regina that make their living via the trap line anymore, so there is, you know, a cultural difference there.
fishing, you know, we cover stories that pertain to commercial fishers and how
their livelihoods are being affected on a daily basis. Again, that's not a new story that perhaps
has a lot of relevance to an urban Aboriginal or non‑Aboriginal here in
4548 And I was asked earlier about the powwow trail. You know, that is something that is very strong here in the south, so we do acknowledge the difference. And as time goes on and where we see the need is, we will certainly fill that need.
WILLIAMS: Given the projected increase
4550 MR. PROKOPIE: I'm sure that they may, but I also believe they appreciate and respect the trusted, and trust is something that needs to be earned not only in Aboriginal country, but across all cultures. Trust is something that needs to be earned.
4551 And, you know, we really feel that we've addressed that trust issue and because people know that when they tune into MBC, they are getting the information as it was meant to be put out there and they are getting the information in a way that makes them feel good about what they're hearing, whether it be through their language or knowing that it's an Aboriginal broadcaster giving them that story.
4552 You know, I believe that that's ultimately what they will keep coming back to is something that feels good, makes them feel warm inside, and reminds them of home.
PROKOPIE: No, we don't see that as
a ‑‑ as an immediate need.
If the need's out there, you know, we do have the Internet and we also
have our cousins in neighbouring provinces that we feel are doing a very good
job with what they do, whether it's AMMSA Alberta, NCI in
4555 COMMISSIONER WILLIAMS: No, no, I was thinking more along the lines of a national broadcaster fulfilling that role and you helping input to it.
4556 MR. PROKOPIE: Well, I mean ‑‑ I think that's sort of what WAAB is looking at. You know, I don't know if we'll actually go on the air as a national broadcaster, but we certainly share ideas and information and some programming so ‑‑ and I think the creation of WAAB was somewhat established to address this particular situation and what you're asking.
WILLIAMS: Okay. If the Commission approved your application
and also approved AVR's application, can you see synergies and opportunities to
work together to better serve the Aboriginal communities of
4558 MR. PROKOPIE: Well, I think, you know, I could answer that question based on what I believe, but I ‑‑ what I really believe, what would need to happen is a coming together of the minds. We have never been approached by AVR to talk about perhaps creating some synergy amongst the two of us.
know some of the other groups across
4560 COMMISSIONER WILLIAMS: Okay, thank you very much. That's my questions to Mr. Prokopie.
4561 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Ms Charles, Mr. Prokopie ‑‑ I'm pronouncing that right?
4562 MR. PROKOPIE: Prokopie.
4563 THE CHAIRPERSON: Prokopie. You have now two minutes to sum up for us.
4564 MS CHARLES: Okay. Well, again thank you for giving me the opportunity to be here to present my application. Given the issues that we presented here today, I respectfully ask the Commission to approve my licence.
4565 And each and every day when we go to work we have to keep in mind our indigenous roots of who we are, what we're about, by/for our ‑‑ with Aboriginal people, and that's what I do each and every day. And I do it for my people and my languages and the different dialects in each and every language and I continue to ‑‑ will work towards the southern ‑‑ incorporating the southern languages into the northern languages so we, as people, can come together and connect with each other again and with the land again.
4566 Thank you.
4567 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you very much.
4568 Madam Secretary, I don't ‑‑ I'm hoping we could get through Phase II in ‑‑ yeah, we could at least start working on Phase II.
4569 THE SECRETARY: Thank you, Madam Chair.
4570 Therefore, this completes Phase I of consideration of items 10 to 16. We can now proceed to Phase II, as indicated by the Chair, in which applicants will appear or can appear, if they wish, in the same order to intervene on competing applications.
4571 We've been informed that Newcap Inc. will not appear in this phase.
4572 I would now call on Touch Canada Broadcasting to come forward if they wish to intervene on competing applications.
4573 THE SECRETARY: I gather they're not appearing.
4574 Therefore, Radio CJVR Ltd. are the next applicant to appear if they wish.
4575 THE SECRETARY: They are not appearing either. We will continue with the Aboriginal Voices Radio.
4576 THE SECRETARY: I've been informed that they will not appear.
4577 And finally, Natotawin Broadcasting can come back if they wish to intervene on competing applications.
4578 THE SECRETARY: And they choose not to, therefore, Mrs. Chair, this completes Phase II of the process.
4579 THE CHAIRPERSON: Actually, Madam Secretary, it doesn't because the list is missing Standard. So could you please ‑‑
4580 THE SECRETARY: You are quite correct.
4581 THE CHAIRPERSON: So could you call Standard?
4582 THE SECRETARY: I stand corrected. Standard Radio may come forward if they wish to intervene on competing applications.
4583 THE SECRETARY: And I think this completes the list, Mrs. Chair.
4584 THE CHAIRPERSON: Then we may as well proceed to Phase III.
4585 THE SECRETARY: Thank you.
4586 Phase III of the process is where other parties appear in the order set out in the agenda to present their intervention.
4587 I will now call on the first appearing intervener, Harvard Broadcasting, to come forward for their presentation.
4588 THE SECRETARY: Mrs. Chair, we will go to the next appearing intervener which is CIRPA. If they are present, if they would come forward to present their intervention?
4589 COMMISSIONER ARPIN: They said that they were only to appear once.
4590 THE SECRETARY: Thank you, Mr. Vice‑Chair.
4591 So therefore, we will proceed to the following intervention which is a panel of two interveners, Rawlco Radio Ltd. and Communications Management Inc. If they could come forward for your ‑‑ the presentation of your intervention?
4592 THE CHAIRPERSON: Ladies and gentlemen, just for information, we will be breaking at 12:30 as ‑‑ well, after you've finished your presentation, as there is a conference call so ‑‑ and then we will be coming back at 1:30 with questions from the panel of this panel.
4593 Madam Secretary...?
4594 THE SECRETARY: I would ask that you introduce yourselves before you begin, and you will have ‑‑ just a moment ‑‑ 15 minutes for your presentation.
4595 Thank you.
PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION
4596 MS LEYLAND: Thank you.
4597 Good afternoon, Madam Chair, Ms Cram, Commissioners Williams, Cugini, Arpin and Pennefather.
we begin our presentation today, I'd like to introduce our Rawlco Radio
team. On October 18th, two weeks ago, we
at Rawlco celebrated our 60th anniversary.
Rawlco was started by Gordon and Doug's father, E.A. Rawlinson, with the
purchase in 1946 of CKBI Radio in
60 years of serving this great province, we know
4600 Let me introduce our group to you. My name is Pam Leyland. I'm president of Rawlco Radio. I got my start in radio as a newsperson, then became a news director, a program director, a general manager, and now president ‑‑ all with Rawlco over the last 25 years.
my right is our CEO, Gordon Rawlinson.
One of his favourite sayings is that he's been in radio all his life,
all the way back to the early days in
to Gord is Ken Goldstein of Communications Management Inc. On my left is Doug Pringle. Doug is a legendary programmer and
musicologist. Doug knows a lot about all
kinds of music, and his roots go back to when he started
you have any questions about the music formats in
to Doug is Kristy Werner. Kristy is the
program director for Z99 here in
4605 Behind me and to my right is Doug Rawlinson. Gordon and Doug have been partners for about 35 years and have worked very hard together to make Rawlco a great radio company.
Doug's left is Karen Mains. Karen is the
person that makes our operation in
Karen's left is Tom Newton. Tom is the
manager of our three radio stations here in
Chair, let me begin by welcoming the Commission and staff to
of the answer is that human beings are very adaptable. They adapt to the environment they find
themselves in. Further, they'll work
very hard to turn what outsiders might consider to be difficult circumstances
into something positive. This is certainly
what the people of
it must be admitted that many people do leave
of these things came through to me again when I read the more than 200 letters
submitted as part of our intervention.
There's a sense in these letters that making
4613 A lot of what is said flies in the face of conventional wisdom. Usually if you offer people what, at least on the surface, appears to be something for nothing, they're going to say, "Of course I'll take it. Why not?" In fact "why not" is the focus of almost all of the letters.
leaders of community organizations have many concerns about the possibility of
licensing additional radio stations in
4615 As Eileen Janz, manager of marketing for the Saskatchewan Science Centre says, "Adding additional licences to this diluted market will impact our ability to reach radio listeners."
4616 They also fear that they will lose the close relationships they have with the existing stations, ones that have been developed over many years.
4617 Erin Marchuk at the Arthritis Society comments, "We value the support we receive and feel that the addition of more radio stations will jeopardize the relationships we've established."
4618 Something they count on is easy access to the stations for interviews when they want to publicize their events or fundraising campaigns.
4619 As Robyn Sullivan with the Regina Day Committee notes, "The Regina radio stations have always been quick to jump on board with generous donations of both on‑air advertising and interviews."
4620 Finally, some organization, like the Regina Hospitals Foundation, worry that the station sponsored fundraising campaigns will be less effective in a more fragmented radio environment.
4621 Conventional wisdom would also suggest that local businesses would welcome more radio stations. The letters show that this is not the case at all. For local retailers, more stations mean more fragmentation which will result in higher advertising costs and diminished impact.
York at Island Inkjet states, "With the state of our
4623 They also worry that more stations will change the close relationship they have with their advertising consultants who help them grow their businesses.
4624 Maxine Drelier of Travel Masters makes this point, "The radio station I deal with gives me great advice and service and I know my rep well."
4625 Finally, they don't like the idea of more station salespeople taking up their valuable time.
4626 Dennis Marvin at Clarica says succinctly, "I do not want to spend further dollars or deal with more radio reps calling on me."
4627 The concerns expressed in these letters are not superficial concerns. In reading them, one can feel the sincerity. The writers honestly feel that there is a special relationship between themselves and the radio stations, and they don't want to lose it.
4628 They're definitely worried that the CRTC will make decisions that will have a real detrimental impact on their organization or businesses.
the very heart of the matter is the reason people choose to live in
work very hard to make
commissioned a survey of 400 radio listeners to try to answer this
question. As the graphic shows, they're
quite happy with their local radio service.
A high percentage indicated they were satisfied that they can get the
local news and community information they need, and that the stations do a good
job covering local events. They
recognize that the stations support Canadian artists and play their music. Overall, there was a high level of
satisfaction with local radio in
4632 Special mention must be made to the response to the question, "Can you listen to the music you like when you want to listen to it?" The Internet, iPod, satellite radio and other forms of music distribution are changing the way people listen to music.
all the major music formats are available in
role of Rawlco Radio in
this light, let's take a look at what Rawlco Radio has accomplished. Crazy is the term experienced broadcasters
were using when Rawlco introduced News Talk eight years ago. Small cities like
today News Talk has become absolutely essential to life in
PRINGLE: While doing an application for
a new FM station in
4638 Now, when looking at this picture, we came to realize that there was something wrong. We were doing Project 10K20 in Edmonton and Calgary because of CTD commitments, but in Saskatchewan, our home province, the need was perhaps even greater, so we decided to rectify the situation and announced its availability on our Saskatchewan radio stations. The response was quite overwhelming. More than 200 applications were received. We ended up approving 29 of the applications and the resulting CDs are displayed on the board beside me there.
of the major benefits of Project 10K20 in
LEYLAND: Community involvement,
community service and super‑serving our listeners is the way we do
radio. The submitted letters tell the
story again and again. Outside
recognition of our efforts can be seen in the 27 CAB nominations and awards our
stations have received since 2000. These
award‑winning programs are just the tip of the iceberg. Every day, and in almost every program, we're
doing things to support the community and local community organizations. It's the
Chair, Members of the Commission, if there's one thought I can leave you with
in our intervention it is this:
4642 While we are all obsessed with trying to get the population over that elusive 1 million mark, the fact is we live here because we like it just the way it is. We found that there are many benefits and advantages to living in cities with little growth.
necessity, the people of
radio revenues are not growing in
believe the letters and the survey results deliver a clear message: The people of
a city of its size,
4647 Thank you. This completes our intervention. Ken...?
4648 THE CHAIRPERSON: Actually, if I can stop you right now and we will adjourn and then, Mr. Goldstein, you can give your brief presentation after lunch. 12:30.
4649 MS LEYLAND: Thank you.
4650 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Not 12:30. Yeah, so you've got one second for lunch. No, 1:30.
‑‑‑ Upon recessing at 1230 / Suspension à 1230
‑‑‑ Upon resuming at 1330 / Reprise à 1330
CHAIRPERSON: Order. I just wanted to say one thing about Ms
Leyland's comments about people moving to
‑‑‑ Laughter / Rires
4652 THE CHAIRPERSON: Madam Secretary...?
4653 THE SECRETARY: Thank you, Madam Chair.
4654 We will continue with the intervention of CMI, Communications Management Inc. Mr. Goldstein...?
PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION
4655 MR. GOLDSTEIN: Thank you, Madam Chair, Commissioners.
4656 In this proceeding from an economic perspective, there is essentially one fundamental question that needs to be addressed: Do the economic indicators tell us that the market is capable of supporting a new commercial radio station?
4657 The report we submitted deals in detail with that question. As you will have seen in our report, we tied our analysis very closely to the patterns of licensing and the comments the Commission made with respect to four other metro markets in which the Commission has considered new radio licences in the recent past; Kitchener, Halifax, Calgary and Quebec City.
we chose this methodology because of something the Commission itself said in
its decision of August 10th, 2006, on the licensing of new radio stations in
we constructed a comparison of four markets in which licences have been granted
results are summarized in our report and the results do indeed tell us that the
economic indicators for the
me briefly review a number of the key indicators. First, population. The Conference Board is projecting that
noted that some of the applicants have made references to data from the
Financial Post Canadian Demographics.
Here is what that source says about
GDP. The Conference Board is predicting
that real GDP growth rates for
retail sales. We heard at least one
applicant claim that
we focus on
4667 The recent reduction in the provincial sales tax from 7 percent to 5 percent may have a modest short‑term effect, but that effect is unlikely to continue into the first years of a radio station in this market.
radio revenues. From 1996 to 2003,
private radio revenues in
4669 Fifth, radio profitability. We have heard a number of statistics from applicants that purport to paint a rosy picture of revenues in the Regina market, but we have not heard any applicant deal with the other key factor, profitability, other than to dismiss its importance. But the numbers are dramatic.
revenue growth be separated from profitability?
Is one more important than the other?
Of course not. Both are
important. And the data tells us that
after a brief growth spurt, radio revenues in
we consider all of the factors together, we believe they deliver a single
powerful message; the economic indicators do not support the licensing of any
new commercial radio stations in
4673 Thank you, I would be pleased to answer any questions you may have.
4674 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Commissioner Cugini...?
4675 COMMISSIONER CUGINI: Good afternoon, Ms Leyland and your panel. Firstly, I'd like to apologize for the quality of my voice. The cold bug has bit me, but I now have good drugs, so hopefully we'll get through this.
‑‑‑ Laughter / Rires
CUGINI: I just have a couple of
questions for you, just to probe a little bit further into your comments
earlier today. I'm not sure if you were
here physically in the room when Newcap presented their application for
compared the number of radio stations to the population in
4678 I was wondering if I could get your comments and your reaction?
4679 MS LEYLAND: Certainly. I'll ask Mr. Goldstein to comment on that.
GOLDSTEIN: I think that those kind of
comparisons really don't tell us very much.
First of all, you could pick other markets. You could pick
4681 COMMISSIONER CUGINI: Which you did in your report.
4682 MR. GOLDSTEIN: Exactly.
4683 COMMISSIONER CUGINI: So ‑‑
4684 MR. GOLDSTEIN: And show precisely the opposite, that you could then use that to say, "Oh, look at the size here. Look at the average number of people per station here. Therefore, there are too many stations in the market.
I think that, as a first cut, I would say that I'm not sure that's particularly
meaningful. The part that bothers me,
though, most about it is that one ‑‑ and by the way, I should
say as an aside, I think the
leaving that aside, the ‑‑ you compare us with
4687 In our report, for example, we noted that you have a situation in Regina and Saskatoon where you have very high levels of spending on programming because they have perfected what I think is a wonderful community model in these two markets.
4688 Now, if that market with the different average of population is now all of a sudden something we're holding up as a beacon to be emulated, should we go to the program spending levels of that market? Should we go to the profitability levels of that market? Should we go to the staffing levels of that market?
4689 So to simply say there are X number of people per station doesn't really tell the story.
4690 COMMISSIONER CUGINI: And if ‑‑ I'd like to ask you, Mr. Goldstein, why it is that you included that same comparison in your study?
4691 MR. GOLDSTEIN: Oh, I conclude ‑‑ include it only to show that you could pick numbers and show precisely the opposite. I think I could probably find the words, but I think I probably said I don't think these are very meaningful and I then went on to say, "Let's do a more sophisticated analysis." I believe there's actually a subhead in my study talking about a more sophisticated analysis.
4692 COMMISSIONER CUGINI: Thank you.
4693 Ms Leyland, you may have heard us ask just about every applicant in these proceedings what are the factors? Profitability we recognize is but one, but what are the factors that we, as a Commission, need to examine in order to determine whether or not a market can sustain another entrant?
4694 I would like to ask you what are the factors you look at and, if you can, perhaps even prioritize what those factors are when you want to enter, as Rawlco, into a new market.
4695 MS LEYLAND: I think one of the factors that ‑‑
4696 COMMISSIONER CUGINI: I'm sorry, I can't hear you.
LEYLAND: Oh, I'm sorry. I think one of the factors that you might
consider is music and the music that's presently offered in the community and
the other formats that the applicants might want to make available. I'd like to ask Doug to comment on the music
formats that are in
PRINGLE: So if I could paint a brief
picture of the formatic landscape in
4699 If you take the pop area, you have Lite who is an AC station catering to more the upper demographic of the pop audience. And you have Z99 which caters more to the lower demographic. So essentially upper and lower is covered in the pop side.
4700 If you take rock, you have a classic rock station, a pure classic rock station, Jack, which was ‑‑ as was mentioned by an earlier applicant although it has the name and the personality of the Jack format, it doesn't actually have the format. It's a pure classic rock station.
then you have a mass appeal rock station, the Wolf that is geared younger, but
they too play 40 percent classic rock.
Then you go to country. We have
two country stations. We have an AM country
station and we have Country 100 which comes in from
4702 So I've got to be honest, when I first heard a call for the two markets, I was very curious as to what the mainstream broadcasters would come up with in terms of adding variety and musical diversity to the market and I was anticipating there'd be some pretty interesting category 3 submissions, so I was quite surprised actually that there were actually no category 3 submissions. In fact, what was offered were just variations of what already existed in the marketplace.
4703 So just to quickly run through. If you look at classic hits, well, there's already a station in the market that actually not only plays classic hits and has done for over 15 years, but has classic hits in their slogan. Z99's slogan is, "Classic Hits and Today's Best Music".
4704 In addition to that, you'll find classic hits on Lite and you'll also find classic hits on Jack, so that format ‑‑ you know, that music is extremely well covered off.
4705 I was also interested to hear that there were no classic rock stations in this marketplace. In actual fact, Jack is pure classic rock, and as I mentioned Wolf plays 40 percent classic rock. To my knowledge, there's no market anywhere that supports three classic rock stations, so I don't really see where they would fit in.
submission for oldies was interesting.
Oldies has some challenges. As
you probably know, in
FM, they recently abandoned the format for a younger gold format, a format
based in the '80s. And of course in
4708 The Canadian music from the '60s and '70s is ‑‑ you know, simply because there's not much great Canadian music from that era, it's duplicated on both the classic rock format and the oldies format. I'm talking about BTO, the Guess Who, Neil Young. All those guys, they're duplicated. So I question how much of a hole, even if you could do it, there is for oldies in the market.
then the new country FM application, there already is a new country FM signal
available to anybody who would like to listen to it in
4710 So as I look at what the market already has, which essentially has all the major formats covered in multiple, and then I look at what's being offered, I don't really see where there's much musical diversity. I mean there's ‑‑ yes, it is versions of what is there, but I don't see any huge musical diversity being offered.
4711 MR. RAWLINSON: Can I throw in one other comment as to what factors to look at? I think that also it's worthwhile to take a look at what the existing radio stations are doing. Are they providing good service or not? Are they do ‑‑ doing a good job of serving their community? Are they serving them well? Are they running more than just jukeboxes or are they running real radio stations, real full‑service radio stations? I think that's a factor to be considered, and I won't belabour that point, but I think that's a factor too.
4712 COMMISSIONER CUGINI: Thank you. Thank you very much. Madam Chair, those are all my questions.
4713 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you.
4714 Commissioner Pennefather...?
4715 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: I have some questions for you, Mr. Goldstein, and I'll go back to the point that my colleague, Commissioner Cugini, raised regarding the comparison with other markets.
4716 Now, I'm in your report and I have to say that you did include that as one of the economic indicators. You go on to discuss a more sophisticated set of comparisons with a different city comparison, but the question she asked you in reference to the comments from Newcap was really in relation to your choice to use comparisons with other metropolitan markets on page 4 as one of the indicators. And I do say indicators, so you would ‑‑ we agree that there are a number of indicators that one uses.
4717 So on that where you, yourself, at page 4, have noted that one of the indicators that can be used is a comparison with other markets in terms of population, in your view what would be your estimate of the minimum population required to support a commercial radio station?
4718 MR. GOLDSTEIN: Let me answer the first thing first by actually, if I may, read into the record what I said?
said some of the applications in this proceeding have included comparisons
4720 As far as asking the question of what is the minimum population you need to support a radio station, there is no answer. And the reason there is no answer because it's not only the number of people, but it's where they're located.
minimum population in
4722 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: So you agree though it could be part of the mix of the discussions even though one would want to take a more sophisticated approach to it? It still could be an indicator among others, but a less important one in your view?
4723 MR. GOLDSTEIN: It's about the least important one. I mean if you look at the amount spent on programming as a measure of the community involvement, if you look at the profitability, if you look at the trends, it also depends what direction you're moving in. I consider it a highly simplistic kind of an indicator.
4724 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you.
4725 Well, you will accept that just in the way this ‑‑ it is presented, I assumed that it was one of the indicators that you hoped to discuss. And you go on to is ‑‑ to a more elaborate approach to that based on our decisions. Let me take you to another indicator, which is page 6, your figures ‑‑ 6 and 7, your figures 3 and 4.
as I understand it, these figures are an estimate of program spending as a
percentage of revenue, and also there's another column on PBIT as percentage of
revenue and private radio. And I'm looking
at the percentage of program expenditures, a comparison of
4727 MR. GOLDSTEIN: That is correct.
4728 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Now, can you explain why ‑‑ what your rationale for maintaining that the Commission should refrain from licensing in markets ‑‑ in these markets in order to enable incumbents to maintain these clearly above average expenses and staffing levels?
4729 MR. GOLDSTEIN: Well, I think that there's a short answer and there's a longer answer. The short answer is, is if you fragment the market and drive the PBIT levels down, they won't be able to afford to maintain the same levels of program expenditure and community service.
I think this is actually a window into a very important, much larger discussion
that we should be having here and we should be having in lots of places, and that
is is that the stations in this province ‑‑ particularly in
4731 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Well, I think if we kept it, as you said earlier from ‑‑ in your remarks from an economic perspective, if we keep it to that, you would accept though those higher expenses is a factor we should take into consideration when looking at profitability levels?
4732 MR. GOLDSTEIN: Well, I want ‑‑ I'm ‑‑ there is another important point to be added, and that is this, that the ‑‑ we've heard about the threat to radio, some of which is beginning to be felt, some of which is a little over the horizon from satellite and Internet and iPod and whatever. The answer to that threat is precisely the kind of local emphasis that these stations are doing today.
4733 If you fragment the market, if you force them away from that, if you build them more into the jukebox mode