Conroy to loosen rules on local radio stations resources after ownership changes

Local radio stations will be able to more easily cut resources after ownership changes, media minster Stephen Conroy has indicated.

Speaking at the National Radio Conference, Conroy told the industry that he was minded to reduce the protections in the Broadcasting Services Act of 1992.  

The act was created to protect local stations if they changed ownership including through sale or family inheritance.

Conroy said: “I know the commercial radio industry has long desired legislative amendments to these provisions. My Department has, in fact, undertaken a review of these provisions. As a result of the review and discussion with industry, I am shortly bringing forward legislative amendments for Parliament to consider.”

He claimed: “These amendments will reduce red tape while maintaining a commitment to local content for regional areas.”

The commercial radio industry has been unhappy that once a station changed hands the rules state that its resources – for instance the number of studios, must always remain the same.

However, stations will still face rules about the amount of local content that they broadcast.


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