CIVH-AM, Valley Country, Vanderhoof/Cariboo

Vista Broadcast Group Inc.

CIVH-AM200513401,000/500Vista Broadcast Group Inc.
CIVH-AM197313401,000/250Central Interior Radio Inc.
CIVH-AM197313401000/250Central Interior Radio Inc.


Prince George Broadcasting Ltd. (owner of CJCI) received a licence for a new AM station at Vanderhoof on July 27.
CIVH began broadcasting in November, operating on 1340 kHz with a power of 1,000 watts day and 250 watts night.


On September 27, CIVH was authorized to operate a rebroadcast transmitter at Fort St. James, on 1480 kHz with power of 50 watts (non directional).


The corporate name changed to Central Interior Radio Inc.


Central Interior Radio Inc. became Cariboo Central Interior Radio Inc.


On February 13, the CRTC approved the application to amend the licence for the AM radio network consisting of CJCI Prince George, CIVH Vanderhoof, CFLD Burns Lake, CFBV Smithers, CIFJ Fort St. James, CIFL Fraser Lake, CHBV Houston, CHLD Granisle and CKBV New Hazelton, by increasing the amount of network service originating at Prince George, within the 6:00 AM to midnight period, from 10.5 hours per week to a maximum of 75 hours per week. As a result of this approval, the new hours of network operation during the 6:00 AM to midnight period would be: – from 6:00 AM to 7:00 AM daily, – from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM and from 6:00 PM to midnight Monday through Friday, – from 1:00 PM to midnight on Saturdays, and from noon to midnight on Sundays. The licensee based its proposal on the need for greater economies and operational efficiencies in order to improve the quality of its regional service. 


By this time, CIVH had increased night-time power to 500 watts.


On October 19, CIVH was authorized to replace CIFJ-AM Fort St. James with a new FM station, operating on 92.7 MHz with an effective radiated power of 42 watts. 


On June 28, the CRTC renewed the licenses for Cariboo Central Interior Radio’s CIVH (and its transmitters CIFL Fraser Lake and CIFJ Fort St. James), until August 31, 2011.


In early August it was announced that Cariboo Central Interior Radio Inc., owners of CKBX 100 Mile House, CFLD Burns Lake, CJCI-FM and CIRX-FM Prince George, CKCQ-FM Quesnel, CFBV Smithers, CIVH Vanderhoof, CKWL and CFFM-FM Williams Lake and numerous re-broadcast stations in northern B.C. had been purchased by a Calgary group, headed by Margot Micallef.  On September 1, The CRTC announced approval of the sale to 1126144 Alberta Ltd., a company affiliated with Vista Broadcast Group Inc. 


On March 20, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence for CIVH Vanderhoof and its transmitters CIFL Fraser Lake and CIFJ Fort St. James to August 31, 2012.

It was announced that Vista President Terry Coles would move into retirement at the end of 2012 and immediately into a consulting role with the company. His successor would be CEO Margot Micallef who would handle the dual roles of President/CEO. Bryan Edwards moves to Senior VP of Business Development. Vista Kelowna General Manager/General Sales Manager Ross Hawse would become the Director Western Operations. Gary Russell, Vista’s Director of Systems and GM of Vista Prince George, would integrate Haliburton and Vista in Ontario as the Director of Integration and Operations, Vista East. Co-Founder/Executive VP Paul Mann would add Senior VP of Sales and Training and Development to his duties. Assisting him would be Tracey Gard, the GM/GSM of the Cariboo Group of Vista stations, as Director Vista Sales, West and based in Courtenay. The former finance executive at Corus and Telemedia, Chris Lecomte joined Vista as Senior VP/CFO, based in Toronto. 

On August 28, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence of CIVH Vanderhoof and its transmitters CIFL Fraser Lake and CIFJ Fort St. James to December 31, 2012.

The CRTC approved a change to the effective control of Vista Radio Ltd. from a control exercised by its board of directors to a control exercised by Westerkirk Capital Inc., a corporation controlled by Thomson Investments Limited. Vista Radio Ltd. was the licensee of radio programming undertakings located in British Columbia, Alberta and the Northwest Territories.

On December 21, the CRTC renewed the licence of CIVH Vanderhoof and its transmitters CIFL Fraser Lake and CIFJ Fort St. James to August 31, 2018.


In January, Vista Radio voluntarily surrendered the licenses for CIFJ 1480 Fort St. James and CIFL 1450 Fraser Lake. Vista stated that the transmitting equipment for these facilities was in a state of disrepair and it would not be economically viable to replace them. These transmitters were rebroadcasters of CIVH.


In March, Valley Country AM’s tower crashed to the ground following an accident. Snow removal contractors made contact with the guy wire, which caused the tower to collapse. Valley Country was broadcast on sister station, 95.9 the GOAT, until repairs could be made.

Vista Radio surrendered the licence for Valley Country 1340 after its transmission tower was damaged and collapsed in March. It was deemed too expensive to repair. Vista committed to increasing the level of local programming on CIRX-FM Vanderhoof from 3.5 to 126 hours per week. The CRTC approved the licence revocation on August 15.

The story continues elsewhere…
Effective September 1st 2019, we will only be adding new material to these station histories in exceptional circumstances. Our intent to chronicle the early days of these radio and television stations has been achieved, and many new sources and technologies, from the CRTC website to Wikipedia, and others, are now regularly providing new information in these areas.

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