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Budget 2005: $4.4M for community TV and radio

3 May 2005 Media Statement

Budget 2005: $4.4M for community TV and radio

$4.4 million will be invested in non-commercial radio and regional television over the next four years as part of Budget 2005, Broadcasting Minister Steve Maharey announced today.

Nearly $900,000 will be allocated for non-commercial radio while $3.5 million will be invested in the first-ever government funding of regional television.

Making the announcement on-air at Wellington Access Radio – New Zealand's first access radio station – Steve Maharey said the funding recognised the important role of community and regional broadcasters.

"Regional broadcasters serve their local communities in ways no other media outlets can," Steve Maharey said. "They provide forums for local and minority voices.

"Running a community radio or television station is tough work – stations are often reliant on dedicated volunteers and part-time programmers. This new funding will ensure local broadcasters can continue to provide quality programming to their communities.

"Over the past few years the government has been working hard to develop public broadcasting at the national level with the Radio NZ and TVNZ Charters and Maori TV. This funding will allow us to promote public broadcasting at a grass-roots level."

The budget allocation will be made to NZ On Air, who will talk with local broadcasters about the development of a funding framework.

NOTE TO EDITORS: Steve Maharey will make the announcement at Wellington Access Radio at 1 pm Tuesday. Programmers from Wellington's ethnic communities will be on hand to meet the Minister and talk to the media.

Reporters and photographers are welcome to attend.

Where: Wellington Access Radio, 35 Ghuznee Street, Wellington
When: 1 pm, Tuesday, 3 May


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