MASSE’S “FIGHT TO SAVE OUR LOCAL TV” CONTINUES: Heritage Committee to hold hearings into state of Local Broadcast television

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 12, 2009

MASSE’S “FIGHT TO SAVE OUR LOCAL TV” CONTINUES
Heritage Committee to hold hearings into state of Local Broadcast television

Ottawa, On- Today, Brian Masse, M. P. (Windsor West) and NDP Industry, Automotive, and Border Critic, expressed optimism in the fight to save local broadcast television in Windsor and across the country with yesterday’s passage of the NDP’s Heritage Critic Charlie Angus’s motion by the House of Commons Heritage Committee to study the state of the industry.

“With the Heritage committee taking the lead on studying the state of the broadcast television sector in Canada, this provides the forum to examine the challenges and more importantly the solutions to preserve local television in this country. This the opportunity to continue the fight to save our local TV here in Windsor,” Masse stated

The NDP motion at the House of Commons Standing Committee on Heritage institutes a March 25 start date for the hearings on “a study at its earliest convenience on the future of television in Canada and the impact of the economic crisis on the industry in our local communities,” (see below for the complete motion)

On February 25 CTV announced it was going to shut down the A Channel in Windsor by not renewing the license when it expires. This would eliminate the only private local Canadian TV broadcaster in the Windsor region. As the top rated channel with a significant local programming and Windsor news coverage component this is a blow to the community.

“This fight is going to continue to the next stage so please take the time to write, call, email, or Fax CTV and the CRTC and demand that Windsor's A-channel station not only stay open but to expand news, talk, and local programming. We can save our local TV,” Masse declared.
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HOC Heritage Committee Motion

“That, in light of the economic downturn, this committee conduct a study at its earliest convenience on the future of television in Canada and the impact of the economic crisis on the industry in our local communities, beginning with calling to appear on March 25, 2009 from the Canada Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission Konrad von Fickenstein, Chairman, Michel Arpin, Vice-Chairman of Broadcasting, and Peter Foster, Director General of Television Policy and Applications, to provide a briefing examining impacts on broadcast in terms of the following key issues that are emerging:
1) the upcoming transition to digital programming;
2) the financial pressures on local and Canadian programming;
3) the need to maintain diversity of voices in media markets across Canada;
4) the effectiveness of cultural development funds on ensuring Canadian voices are able to compete in a challenged television landscape;
And on the upcoming public hearing on License Renewals for Private Conventional Television Stations listed in Broadcasting Notice of Consultation CRTC 2009-113 in light of the recent economic crisis and technological innovations, and that the Committee report the findings of this study to the House.”