Council doesn’t support Bell purchase of EZ Rock

City council declines to support Bell buyout of Astral Media, which includes Revelstoke's EZ Rock radio station

A few years ago, you could have watched the council debate on the local cable channel, or heard about it from the Revelstoke EZ Rock radio reporter. Neither cover city council meetings anymore — and that’s the point, said city councillors.

At their Aug. 14 meeting, city council gave the thumbs down to a written request from Astral Radio morning host Jeff M. Reisen for support for Bell Canada’s purchase of Astral Media.

Bell Canada proposed a $3.4-billion purchase of the Montreal-based Astral Media in March. The purchase includes 24 TV channels and 84 radio stations across the country — including Revelstoke’s EZ Rock.

Competitors and other opponents of media ownership concentration have decried the purchase and asked the CRTC to intervene.

Revelstoke city council’s concerns were more local.

City councillor and former radio jock Steve Bender said the takeover was not good news for smaller markets like Revelstoke. “It is just not of any kind of potential advantage or any kind of real advantage … if they reflected their local markets more, especially markets our size,” Bender said. “And a big consolidation like this, that all totally goes out the window, and it has for the last 20 to 25 years. So I can’t support it.”

Coun. Chris Johnston said the takeover amounted to “a growing monopoly” for Bell: “I don’t know if that’s right or not, but that’s what I see.”

Coun. Phil Welock likened the change to a buyout of Revelstoke Cable a couple years ago by a Saskatoon-based cable and internet provider YourLink Inc. “Things got worse then, so I think the same thing can happen here with this,” Welock said.

Council voted unanimously against writing a letter to support the buyout.

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19: Ups and downs of businesses reopening in Revelstoke

Continued pandemic restrictions changing dynamics in Revelstoke

Fatality after early morning crash on Highway 1 near Revelstoke

The incident was between a semi truck and passenger vehicle

Roots and Blues festival to kick off virtually on Friday

Watch the festival on Black Press Media website platforms, for free

UPDATE: Highway 1 reopened west of Revelstoke after fatal incident

The highway was closed before 6 a.m. Aug. 13

City purchases new snowblower for $44,000 under budget

Revelstoke replacing 2009 loader attachment with a new one

Video: SUV burns alongside the highway near Salmon Arm

Footage of the burning vehicle was posted to Youtube.

COVID-19: Ups and downs of businesses reopening in Revelstoke

Continued pandemic restrictions changing dynamics in Revelstoke

Summerland working to reopen recreation facilities

Arena and pool are opening, but ball season will not proceed

Surrey man found guilty in West Kelowna killing of common-law spouse

Tejwant Danjou was convicted of second-degree murder in the July 2018 death of Rama Gauravarapu in West Kelowna

Watchdog clears Okanagan RCMP in death of man after arrest over alleged stolen pizzas

The man died in hospital after having difficulty breathing and broken ribs

Have you seen Berleen? B.C. pig destined for sanctuary goes missing

Berleen was less than two weeks from travelling to Manitoba when she vanished

Algae bloom highlights nutrient concerns in Shuswap water quality report

Shuswap Watershed Council releases 2019 water quality report

Health Canada says several kids hospitalized after eating edible pot products

People warned not to store cannabis products where children can find them

‘It’s not just about me’: McKenna cites need to protect politicians from threats

Police investigation was launched after someone yelled obscenities at a member of McKenna’s staff

Most Read