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2019 Allocation of Paid Time

Seal of the Broadcast Arbitrator

The Broadcasting Arbitrator

Suite 5300
Toronto-Dominion Bank Tower
Toronto, Ontario
M5K 1E6

Tel.: 416-601-7620
Fax: 416-868-0673
Cell: 647-588-7620


Reasons for Decision

On June 14, 2019, I convened a meeting of the 16 registered parties. The meeting was attended by 14 of the 16 parties. The meeting constituted the annual meeting required to be held under section 343 of the Canada Elections Act to "review the allocation...".

Since the last federal general election in 2015, I have issued four arbitration decisions. On July 13, 2016, my decision allocated broadcasting time to 23 registered parties.  However, by the time of my next decision in 2016, the following four parties had been deregistered:

Accordingly, my decision on October 21, 2016, allocated time to 19 registered parties.

By the time of my next decision in 2017, the following three parties had been deregistered:

As a result, my decision on April 13, 2017, allocated time to 16 registered parties.

By the time of my 2018 decision, two more parties had been deregistered:

Accordingly, my decision on April 30, 2018 allocated time among only 14 registered parties.

Since the time of my 2018 decision, however, two more parties have been registered, bringing the total number of registered parties back up to 16:

In addition, a new party - the United Party of Canada - has become eligible.  Under subsection 339(1) of the Canada Elections Act, it is entitled to no more than six minutes of paid time and this to be rolled into the 390 minutes to be allocated by virtue of subsection 343(2) of the Act.

Prior to 2016, I have used a “one-third modified allocation approach,” under which one third of the available time is allocated equally among the registered parties. The remaining two-thirds of the time is allocated on the basis of the statutory factors set out in section 338 of the Act.

However, in 2016, I decided to move the one-third up to one-half because I considered that all parties needed at least ten minutes of paid time to be able to make a meaningful case to the public, and that given the greater number of parties, the one-third approach did not achieve this goal.

At the meeting on June 14, 2019, I proposed to utilize the same “one-half modified allocation approach” I had first used in 2016.  Using this approach, one half of the available time is allocated equally among the registered parties.  The remaining one-half of the time is allocated on the basis of the statutory factors set out in section 338 of the Act. The resulting time is then rounded to the nearest half minute.

Taking into account the six minutes automatically allocated to the United Party of Canada, the result is as shown in the attached table. Under this approach, every registered party is awarded at least 12 minutes of broadcasting time.

When put to a vote, eleven of the parties present accepted my proposed allocation, using the one-half modified allocation approach. However, a number of parties, while applauding my decision in 2016 to move from one-third to one-half, urged me to move to a scenario where all the broadcasting time would be allocated equally to the registered parties, and the statutory factors would be entirely ignored.  When put to a vote, this was supported by 10 parties.

Having considered the matter, I have decided to stay with the one-half modified allocation approach introduced in 2016.  As noted above, this approach gives each party at least 12 minutes of broadcasting time.  In my decision of July 13, 2016, I referred to a 10 minute threshold as being the minimum amount of time that a party would need to make a meaningful case to the public. I am pleased to see that under the present allocation, all parties would exceed this threshold without having to rely on free time.

At the meeting in 2018, certain parties expressed concern that when scheduling free time, the networks with free time obligations insisted on political messages longer than 30 seconds to fill the time allotted to the parties.  I approached CBC/Radio-Canada to ask that this concern be addressed and the Corporation responded in a letter dated June 7, 2019, which I distributed to all the parties present at the meeting. The letter indicated that CBC/Radio-Canada would accept free time messages of 60 seconds, 90 seconds or 120 seconds and allow them to be aired as repeats on different days. A number of the parties expressed appreciation for this accommodation.

As I mentioned at the meeting, I have acted as the Broadcasting Arbitrator since 1992 but I will not be seeking reappointment when my term expires in 2020. I wish to thank all the parties for their support and cooperation in this process over the years.

Original signed by

Peter S. Grant
The Broadcasting Arbitrator
Toronto, June 28, 2019





Seal of the Broadcast Arbitrator

The Broadcasting Arbitrator

Suite 5300
Toronto-Dominion Bank Tower
Toronto, Ontario
M5K 1E6

Tel.: 416-601-7620
Fax: 416-868-0673
Cell: 647-588-7620


2019 Allocation of paid time

Order

Following a meeting of the registered parties held on June 14, 2019, and pursuant to subsection 337(3) of the Canada Elections Act, I hereby allocate the broadcasting time to be made available under section 335 of the Act on the basis set forth in the Appendix.

June 28, 2019

Original signed by

Peter S. Grant
The Broadcasting Arbitrator


APPENDIX

Allocation of Broadcasting Time to Be Made Available by Every Broadcaster Under Section 335 of the Canada Elections Act for Purchase by Registered Parties, as Determined by the Broadcasting Arbitrator Under Subsection 337(3) of the Act

(Toronto, june 28, 2019)

Political Parties Min:Sec
Liberal Party of Canada 92:00
Conservative Party of Canada 67:00
New Democratic Party 45:00
Green Party of Canada 22:30
Bloc Québécois 20:00
Libertarian Party of Canada 14:00
Marxist-Leninist Party of Canada 13:30
Christian Heritage Party of Canada 13:00
Communist Party of Canada 12:30
Rhinoceros Party 12:30
Alliance of the North 12:00
Animal Protection Party of Canada 12:00
Marijuana Party 12:00
National Citizens Alliance of Canada 12:00
People's Party of Canada 12:00
Progressive Canadian Party 12:00
Total 384:00