CBC Gets Boost In New Canadian Federal Budget
March 22, 2016 at 5:06 PM (PT)
The CBC/RADIO-CANADA got a boost from the new federal budget announced TODAY, with C$675 million over the next five years representing a C$225 million increase (C$75 million this year, $150 million over the next four years). In a statement, the network said it was "grateful for the Government of CANADA’s important reinvestment in CANADA’s public broadcaster."
“This is great news for CBC/RADIO-CANADA, and for Canadians who support public broadcasting,” said CBC/RADIO-CANADA Pres./CEO HUBERT T. LACROIX. “This reinvestment is a vote of confidence by government and by Canadians in our programs, our people, and our vision for the future ... We are humbled by this important support. We look forward to showing Canadians what we can do for them with this reinvestment.“
The statement added, "CBC/RADIO-CANADA will use these funds to create new content and strengthen our transformation to the digital environment. We will reinvest in key areas important to Canadians, and in new digital jobs. We will have more information to share about this reinvestment in the weeks ahead."
Union: Okay, Now End The Cuts And Restore Home-Grown Programming
The CANADIAN MEDIA GUILD wasted no time in applauding the budget increase and holding the network to its previous assertions that its spending cuts had only been because of cuts to its budget by the previous government. "We hope the addition of $75 million this fiscal year and $150 million a year until 2021, will allow the CBC to stop the cuts that have crippled its ability to provide quality local news and original programming," said CMG CBC Branch President MARC-PHILIPPE LAURIN. He added that LACROIX "has said he was shackled by Conservative budget cuts -- now the shackles are off. The CMG calls on LACROIX to freeze further planned job cuts and the sale of CBC buildings and assets until a new plan -- and a new vision -- are in place."
CMG National Pres. CARMEL SMYTH said, "With the new funding, the focus needs to be on ensuring CBC's continues to produce quality original programming for all platforms – radio, television, and digital -- instead of purchasing outside content. The concern that the CBC will no longer be able to create Canadian programs is one of the reasons the CBC's two largest unions are calling for an independently appointed leadership that would be focused on ensuring the public broadcaster is run as a public trust for the public good."