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County radio hearing date set for March

The group working to establish a community radio station in Prince Edward County has announced a CRTC hearing date for March.

Speaking to more than 50 people attending a meeting last week, board chairman Treat Hull said the CRTC hearing is to be held into 92.3 County FM’s license application on March 20th, with an initial decision on the license possible as early as the month afterward and final grant of license possible as early as this summer.

“This is a major step forward which would make it possible to get on the air in 2014,” he said, cautioning that “while the process could still be delayed, the CRTC has chosen a type of hearing which lends itself easily to an early decision.”

The board also announced the station has negotiated an agreement in principle for a long-term lease to locate the station’s offices and studios at the County Farm Centre building, just outside of Picton.

Hull said members also discussed the issue of KWE FM currently operating on the Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory on the same channel which County FM was told they could apply for last July.

Members attending the AGM unanimously accepted the board’s report which said “the County has a legitimate need for a radio station. We intend to actively pursue our license and will expect the relevant authorities (Industry Canada and/or the CRTC) to resolve any issue regarding frequency allocation. At the same time, we will do this in a cooperative way since we do not wish to inflame passions and damage ongoing relationships between the County and Tyendinaga communities.”

The Prince Edward County Radio Corporation (92.3 County FM) is incorporated as a not-for-profit to fund and operate a community owned and operated radio station that reflects and enhances the richness, diversity and economic vitality of Prince Edward County. The Corporation is supported by more than 270 people in the County who have joined as members.

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