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Local radio content in regional areas

In regional areas, a commercial radio service must broadcast minimum amounts of local content. The minimum depends on the size of your local area. 

You must broadcast local content between 5am and 8pm each business day.

The minimum is:

  • 30 minutes in areas with less than 30,000 people
  • 3 hours in other areas

Local content means ‘material of local significance’. This has a direct and real relationship to a regional radio broadcaster’s licence area because it:

  • is hosted in the licence area
  • is produced in the licence area
  • relates to the licence area

The Broadcasting Services (Regional Commercial Radio – Material of Local Significance) Licence Condition sets the rule.

You need to keep records of which programs you use to meet the local content quota. We can ask you for those records.

When you are exempt from the local content standard

You do not have to meet the local content standard for the whole year (52 weeks). You will be exempt for 5 weeks from the second Monday in December, unless either:

  • the licence is subject to an alternative exemption period (through the Broadcasting Services (Regional Commercial Radio – Specification of Periods for Subsections 43C(1A) and 61CD(2)) Instrument 2012)
  • you nominate to be exempt for a different period (including splitting the 5-week period into 2 periods totalling 5 weeks). You can do this by giving the ACMA written notice 21 or more days before the exemption period is due to start. You can use the Licensee notification to the ACMA under section 8AE form.

You may also be exempt if:

  • your licence was allocated under subsection 40 (1) of the Broadcasting Services Act 1992
  • you hold a regional racing service radio licence
  • you hold a remote area service radio licence.
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