ACMA investigates 2LT news provisions

Lithgow based radio station 2LT is in trouble with the ACMA after breaching a condition of its broadcasting licence.

It was a complaint from a listener that prompted the ACMA investigation. They’d claimed the Midwest Radio Network station didn’t broadcast any local news on several days in January and February of this year.

Under its regional radio content obligations, 2LT is obliged to:

  • Meet minimum services standards by broadcasting at least 35 local news bulletins per week
  • Take all reasonable steps to comply with its approved local content plan, which also contemplated the broadcast of at least 35 local news bulletins per week.

2LT accepted it had failed on both counts due to resourcing and administrative ‘challenges’ and that local news bulletins resumed in March. Midwest Radio Network says its implemented measures to avoid future non-compliance.

“Local news bulletins are a vital source of information for Lithgow residents. They must be a priority for regional radio licensees,” says ACMA Chair Nerida O’Loughlin.

“This is the first breach of a licence condition by Midwest Radio Network. The ACMA is confident that the actions the network has taken will ensure it delivers the right amount of local news bulletins in the future.”

For the record, the ACMA’s enforcement powers for breaches of licences conditions relating regional radio news and information include enforceable undertakings, remedial direction or suspension/cancellation of the licence.

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