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Two new regional television licences granted

Two new regional television licences granted

The people of the East Coast and Pahiatua are to get new local television services.

Broadcasting Minister Steve Maharey said he has granted non-commercial television licences to the East Coast Television Trust (which operates out of Gisborne) and the Tararua Television Charitable Trust (which operates out of Pahiatua). The stations will broadcast a combination of locally-made and internationally-sourced programmes.

Steve Maharey said the proposals submitted by both trusts indicate that they intend reflecting their local communities.

“Both these new television services aim to put local people and local issues on air. In an increasingly globalised world New Zealanders want to see themselves on their tv secreens – these stations will fill an important gap.

“With non-commercial UHF licences now approved both trusts can now get on with setting up their infrastructure and their planning to go to air.

“East Coast TV intends operating a 24-hour 7-day service showcasing the uniqueness and diversity of East Coast life. It plans to broadcast original material for an averge of 6.5 hours daily and will devote the remainder of its schedule to special interest programes that are not screened on the major networks.

“Tararua Television intends broadcasting Christian-based programming and promotional matertial on the Tararua region. It will also provide facilities for the Tararua College Video Training Group to make programmes which it intends screening.

“The allocation of these two frequencies follows consideration of expressions of interest in them which the government called for in December 2001. As non-commercial broadcasters East Coast TV and Tararua Television were required to present a business plan demonstrating that they are viable within the agreed restriction on advertising revenue and without having to seek funding from government and NZ on Air,” Steve Maharey said.

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