AN UPDATE FROM CKGI, GABRIOLA CO-OP RADIO
We’d like to bring you up to speed on our efforts to secure a tower location, so that we might begin broadcasting
If Gabriola is to have a community radio station, there is only one viable location for its transmission tower, and that’s the site known as Stoney Ridge. Because of Gabriola’s geography, it is the only location capable of reaching most of the island; any other location would exclude large parts of Gabriola. Besides the fact that a radio station that did not reach large parts of our community would not really be a community radio station, such coverage would be particularly inadequate in the event of an emergency, such as an earthquake, forest fire, or extended power outage. It is because the tower proposed for Stoney Ridge would minimize gaps in coverage, and provide much better coverage than currently exists, that the Fire Chief has written a letter in support of our proposal.
You may remember that in 2013 the Islands Trust declined to concur with our request to locate a tower at Stoney Ridge, and asked for additional information. Beginning in October of that year, and continuing through 2014, we worked to provide the Trust with the additional information it required, staying in close communication with them throughout to ensure that we satisfied all their requests.
In November of last year, they declined to concur again.
Their reasons for non-concurrence contained many of the same factual errors as their first decision. In fact, it was not clear to us that the additional materials and information we had provided meantime were taken into account in reaching that second decision. We sought clarification in a letter in December, asking for further information and pointing again to errors in the reasons given for their decision. They have declined to reply to our letter.
For that reason, we have submitted an impasse request to Industry Canada, which has final authority in the matter. Industry Canada will now gather information from both parties, and issue a decision.
We would prefer a solution made on Gabriola, but that is not possible if the Trust won’t respond to our requests for information, as we responded to theirs. We expect Industry Canada’s decision in mid-year. The CRTC has given us an extended deadline of Nov. 2, 2015 to begin broadcasting. After that, the licence will be lost.
However, we remain optimistic that we will be able to flip the broadcast switch before then. In that spirit of optimism, we invite you to consider the “20 Points of Love for Gabriola Radio CKGI”on our website, which will provide you with further details regarding our tower proposal, and all the reasons we think CKGI would be very good for Gabriola. You’ll find them at the link below.
If you have any questions or comments, we welcome them at firstname.lastname@example.org.