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Community TV to stay on air

Frieda Lee, 26th March 2024

The Community Broadcasting Association of Australia (CBAA) welcomes the passing of legislation that guarantees community television will stay on air and gives Channel 31 Melbourne and Geelong and Channel 44 Adelaide greater certainty for the future.

Under previous legislation, community television broadcast transmissions were due to be switched off in June 2024.
With the passing of the Broadcasting Services Amendment (Community Television) Bill 2024, introduced by the Hon Michelle Rowland MP, Minister for Communications, Community TV will stay on-air for the foreseeable future.
The Bill repeals previous legislation, under which both stations’ broadcasting licences were due to expire on 30 June this year. The new provisions ensure that in future there will be consultation with stations when the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) reviews the available spectrum for television broadcasting and, if the ACMA determines there is no available broadcast spectrum for community television, there will be a notice period of at least a year.
President of the Australian Community Television Alliance (ACTA) and General Manager of C31 Shane Dunlop, said:
"After enduring a tumultuous period of detrimental federal policy, the bi-partisan support seen for the CTV Bill signifies a landmark moment in the journey to secure community TV services in Melbourne and Adelaide.”
General Manager of Channel 44 Lauren Hillman, said:
“This bill shows that the Australian Government recognises the vital role played by community TV in not only serving local communities but in the broader media landscape, too, as a platform for cultural diversity and inclusivity, and as a training ground for emerging creators.”
Reece Kinnane, Head of Advocacy and Communications, CBAA, said:
“Community broadcasting plays a vital role in Australia’s media landscape, offering true diversity and meeting the needs of underserved audiences. We are pleased that Channels 31 and 44 can continue to contribute their unique Australian content to their local TV audiences and have greater certainty about their future”.
Community television is available on-demand online at https://ctvplus.org.au/ and the CTV+ app available on Android and iPhone, with plans to launch a streaming service on some smart TVs later this year.

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CTV+ launches as a website, available now via ctvplus.org.au, and has both Android and iOS versions in development for future release in early 2022. The service will enable viewers to watch both stations’ live linear broadcast feeds as well as being able to catch up on over 20 locally produced community TV programs, with plans to double its content offering over the next six months


The Federal Government has kicked off a number of processes to enhance media’s role in producing local information, combating misinformation and strengthening communities. These include the Government’s development of a News Media and Digital Platforms Mandatory Bargaining Code, its media diversity inquiryradiocommunications legislation amendments and more – all with which the CBAA has been actively engaging.


2022 was a big year in advocacy for the CBAA. We have worked hard to ensure that community broadcasting is front of mind in any government process on emergency management, news, and community resilience. We have cemented strong relationships with policy makers across the political spectrum and secured ongoing funding vital to the sector’s ability to stay on air.

Here is a snapshot of our advocacy efforts and impacts over 2022.