Community radio secures $6.1 million in funding
The Australian Federal Government will increase funding for the community radio sector by $6.1 million over the next two years.
In an interview on Melbourne community radio station 89.9 LightFM last week, minister for communications Mitch Fifield announced additional targeted funding for digital radio worth $3.9 million, and a further $2.2 million focused on support for stations affected by the reorganisation of the 803-960 MHz radio frequency band.
Regional and rural community stations, in particular, have faced increasing financial pressure since the AMCA made the decision to restructure the frequency band in January. The funding will greatly benefit these stations in covering the hard costs associated with making the transition.
Community Broadcasting Association of Australia CEO Jon Bisset said, “For 40 years, Australian governments have been committed to community radio standing alongside commercial and national radio services on available free-to-air broadcast platforms.”
“We want to take this opportunity to thank all of those involved in helping us keep the community in your radio.”
The announcement comes off the back of record national listenership numbers for community radio in 2017. 5.3 million – or 1 in 4 Australians – have tuned in to 450+ community radio services across the country this year.