Jean-Pierre Blais at the public hearing on the renewal of television licences held by large English-language ownership groups

Speech

Gatineau, Quebec
November 28, 2016

Jean-Pierre Blais, Chairman
Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission

Check against delivery

Good morning, ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to this public hearing. Before we begin, I would like to acknowledge that we are meeting here today on the traditional territory of the First Nations. I would like to thank the Algonquin people and pay respect to their elders.

Renewal of television licences

Last week, we held a hearing in Laval regarding the renewal of television licences held by large French-language ownership groups.

Today’s hearing is taking place in the context of the renewal of the television licences held by large English-language ownership groups, namely Bell, Corus and Rogers.  

With these renewals, the Commission plans to put into effect certain policy decisions, including those set out in Let’s Talk TV: A Conversation with Canadians and those related to local and community television.

This is the first time the Commission is renewing group licences since the group-based approach was implemented in 2011. We expect to adjust the approach to reflect changes in the environment since then.

In the coming days, we will be discussing a number of issues with all the applicants and intervenors, in particular those issues set out in the working document released on November 2, 2016. We will also be studying each group’s specific proposal and the possibility of imposing new standard conditions of licence, which were also published on November 2, 2016.

Lastly, I would like to inform you that Shaw and Telelatino Network will not be appearing at this public hearing, and the items related to their licence renewals will therefore not be addressed here this week.

Procedure

I would like to make a few introductions before we begin.

The panel for this hearing consists of:

  • Judith A. LaRocque, Vice-Chair, Broadcasting
  • Stephen Simpson, Regional Commissioner for British Columbia and the Yukon
  • Yves Dupras, Regional Commissioner for Quebec
  • Linda Vennard, Regional Commissioner for Alberta and the Northwest Territories
  • and myself, Jean-Pierre Blais, Chairman of the CRTC. I will be presiding over this hearing.

The Commission team assisting us includes:

  • Julie St-Pierre and Pierre-Marc Perreault, Hearing Managers
  • Rachelle Frenette and Valérie Dionne, Legal Counsel, and
  • Lynda Roy, Hearing Secretary.

I would now like to invite Ms. Roy to explain the procedure we will be following.

Madam Secretary.

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