16 April 2008
ACMA proposes to make frequency available for ABC NewsRadio in Riverland area of South Australia
The Australian Communications and Media Authority is proposing to make spectrum available for the national ABC NewsRadio service to broadcast to Renmark/Loxton on 93.9 MHz.
ACMA has been unable to identify any unused FM frequencies that could be used for the ABC radio service due to spectrum congestion for high power radio services in Renmark/Loxton.
The frequency 93.9 MHz has been identified as the only permanently unallocated frequency at Renmark/Loxton that is suitable for broadcasting services operating at a high power. Riverland Christian Radio Inc is currently broadcasting on that frequency under a temporary community broadcasting licence but not at a high power level.
ACMA is proposing to make alternative FM spectrum available for community broadcasting on 100.7 MHz. Use of this alternative frequency and associated specifications will allow the current temporary community radio service to continue broadcasting with similar coverage of the Renmark/Loxton area.
‘If the proposals are adopted, the temporary community broadcaster, Riverland Christian Radio, will change frequency to 100.7 MHz so that the ABC can broadcast its national NewsRadio service to a wide audience on 93.9 MHz,’ said Giles Tanner, General Manager, Inputs to Industry Division. ‘Riverland Christian Broadcasters will continue to provide a service to interested members of the community on its new frequency.
‘ACMA’s initial view is that using the radiofrequency spectrum in this way will promote diversity of services for audiences in the Riverland area. However, ACMA is very keen to hear the views of the Riverland community before making a decision about varying the licence area plan,’ said Mr Tanner.
Details of the proposed changes are contained in an explanatory paper and draft variation to the Riverland (Television and Radio) licence area plan, released today by ACMA.
The associated documents are available on the ACMA website or by calling 1300 850 115.
The closing date for public comment is Friday 2 May 2008.
Media contact: Donald Robertson, ACMA Media Manager, on (02) 9334 7980.
Licence area plans determine the number and characteristics, including technical specifications, of broadcasting services that are to be available in particular areas of Australia with the use of the broadcasting services bands.
ACMA prepares licence area plans under section 26(1) of the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 (the Act) and may vary licence area plans under section 26(2) of the Act. The Australian Broadcasting Authority (ABA) determined the Riverland licence area plan on 22 August 1996.
The ABA made spectrum available for one community radio broadcasting service in Renmark/Loxton to operate on 93.9 MHz. ACMA is proposing that the ABC NewsRadio service operate on 93.9MHz from a broadcast site in Loxton. This frequency is currently used by Riverland Christian Radio Inc under a temporary community broadcasting licence. As a result, ACMA is also proposing to change the frequency of the community radio service from 93.9 MHz to 100.7 MHz, which also incorporates changes to the technical operating conditions.