29 June 2010
ACMA issues temporary community broadcasting licence for Melbourne City area
The Australian Communications and Media Authority has issued a temporary community broadcasting licence to Melbourne Jewish Radio Inc (MJR). The licence is for twelve months from 14 June 2010 to 13 June 2011. The service is to meet the community interest of the Religious – Jewish community in the Melbourne City RA1 licence area.
This is a low power sub-metro service operating with a maximum effective radiated power of 250 watts. The service is available on the 96.1 MHz frequency.
Given spectrum congestion in Melbourne and the surrounding areas, there is the possibility of channel interference to a long-term community radio service on 96.3 MHz in Geelong. To overcome this, a condition has been placed on MJR’s apparatus licence. If there is any interference to the Geelong community radio service, MJR will be obliged to reduce its effective radiated power towards the Geelong licence area.
MJR may be required to share use of the frequency if the ACMA receives valid applications from other eligible aspirant groups. If this occurs, it will be necessary for the ACMA to vary the timing conditions so that all eligible groups are able to provide a service at the specified times.
The allocation of a temporary community broadcasting licence should not be taken to mean that the ACMA will necessarily make the spectrum available in the Melbourne City licence area for a long-term community radio broadcasting licence in the future.
The number, category and characteristics of broadcasting services that are to be made available for allocation in particular areas of Australia that use the broadcasting services bands are determined by licence area plans.
The Melbourne radio licence area plan, determined in June 2000, currently makes provision for eight Melbourne-wide services and 18 sub-metro community broadcasting services. Licences have been allocated for all 26 services. For any additional long-term community broadcasting service, a licence area plan variation would be required, involving mandatory public consultation.
Generally, aspirant groups in spectrum-congested areas such as Melbourne are advised to consider becoming involved with an existing community broadcasting service in their area. It is a condition of community broadcasting licences that they encourage members of the community to participate in the operations of the service and in the selection and provision of programs.
However, on occasion, further low coverage spectrum is found such that the ACMA can allocate new temporary community broadcasting licences.
More information on temporary community broadcasting licences is available on the ACMA’s website and in the ACMA’s Temporary community broadcasting guidelines 2009.
For more information or to arrange an interview please contact: Donald Robertson, Media Manager, on (02) 9334 7980, 0418 86 1766 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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The ACMA is Australia’s regulator for broadcasting, the internet, radiocommunications and telecommunications. The ACMA’s strategic intent is to make communications and media work in Australia’s public interest. For more information: www.acma.gov.au.