CJET-FM, Jack FM, Smiths Falls

Rogers Media

CJET-FM200092.310,000Rogers Broadcasting Ltd.
CJET-AM199963010,000Rogers Broadcasting Ltd.
CJET-AM198463010,000Rideau Broadcasting Inc. (CHEZ-FM Inc.)
CJET-AM196563010,000Rideau Broadcasting Ltd.
CJET-AM19586301,000Rideau Broadcasting Ltd.
CJET-AM195610701,000Rideau Broadcasting Ltd.
CJET-AM19551070250 dayRideau Broadcasting Ltd. (Jack Polley)


A.E. Dobbie applied to operate an AM station in Smiths Falls. The CBC deferred the application, heard it again in May and put it on hold yet again. There was a competing applicant at the May hearing – C.W. and C.B. Warner, with J. Pollie, A. Cullen and B. Coy. Their application was recommended for denial. The CBC heard both applications again in June – both for 1240 kHz with power of 250 watts. Again, both were turned down. The CBC Board of Governors was not convinced the community could support a reasonably good broadcasting service. 


CKGB Timmins manager John Pollie applied for an AM station at Smiths Falls, operating on 1070 kHz with 1,000 watts of power. The CBC Board of Governors denied the application, stating it did not believe that granting of the application would be justified in light of broadcasting conditions and service in the area. Later in the year, John William Pollie (OBCI) again applied for a Smiths Falls AM station – 1070 kHz with power of 250 watts. This time the CBC recommended the application for approval over the protests of Ottawa’s Frank Ryan who was upset by comments from applicant that Ryan’s CFRA didn’t serve the Smiths Falls area adequately. 

The new station was to have been known as CFRL – with the “RL” representing the Rideau Lakes, the area to be served by the station. Opening date was set for October 1. Jack Pollie was president and general manager. He started his radio career at CKCO Ottawa in 1944. RCA was installing transmitter equipment and McCurdy was handling studio equipment.

The station would now use CJET for call letters rather than CFRL. Jack Pollie said the new calls were selected as distinctive (“cJET”) and would symbolize a new sound in Eastern Ontario (slogan from an ad: CJET 250 watt 1070 kcs Smiths Falls, Ont. is breaking the Sound Barrier in Eastern Ontario.) The company now had a name – Rideau Broadcasting Ltd. CJET became a member of CARTB (CAB).

Bill Falkner was named program director. He had worked in the past as a newsman at Toronto’s CKFH and in sales at Ottawa’s CKOY.

CJET began broadcasting on October 22, and was on the air during daytime hours only. The single 304 foot tower was located on Lot 30, Concession 6, Montague Township.


CJET 1070 increased power to 1,000 watts on August 3. It continued to be a daytime only station.


CJET was an independent station with no network affiliation. Ownership of Rideau Broadcasting Limited: J. W. Pollie 20.0%, E. W. Hoffatetter 20.0%, H. F. Gibson 10.0%, C. W. Warner 7.5%, C. B. Warner 7.5%, J. W. Powers 5.0%, 17 other shareholders 30.0%.

Jack Pollie was president of the company and manager of CJET. Bill Falkner was program director.

RCA recording artist Bob King (with the Country Kings) originated his show live from CJET


Robert “Mac” MacGowan, former commercial manager at CFPA, became district sales manager of CJET. 

CJET was now broadcasting on 630 kHz. Slogan: Now the new Radio-63. More coverage. More homes. More sales. CJET Smiths Falls 1000 watts 630 kcs. 


Don Autry was news editor.


CJET increased power to 10,000 watts full-time (two directional patterns) on 630 kHz, October 21. Five towers were used at Lot 30, Concession D., Wolford Township, Grenville County.

CJET was now a CBC affiliate. J. W. Pollie was president of the company and manager of CJET. Hal Botham was assistant manager and commercial manager. Jim Casidy was program and news director and Jack Thompson was morning man.

On November 14, CJET began broadcasting from new studios located at the transmitter site. 


CJET received approval to operate an FM station.


Roger Easton was chief engineer.


Rideau Broadcasting Ltd. launched CJET-FM on January 19.




On April 23, Eastern Broadcasting Co. Ltd. failed in its bid to acquire 78% of Rideau Broadcasting Ltd. from J.W. Pollie Ltd., J.W. Pollie, J. Sands and C. Simpson.

Andre Bonneau left CJET for CJRC Ottawa where he became chief engineer. He was replaced at CJET by Dennis Disque. 


Jack Pollie, President, GM & founder of CJET died.


CJET’s licence was renewed to June 30 to allow the CRTC time to consider an application to transfer control from J. W. Pollie Ltd. to the executor of Mr. Pollie’s estate, Royal Trust Co.

On June 5, the CRTC denied the transfer of effective control of J. W. Pollie Ltd., majority shareholder (77.9%) of Rideau Broadcasting Ltd., from the estate of J. W. Pollie to The Royal Trust Co. (sole executor of the estate). Royal would hold control in excess of five years, until John Hugh Cotton, nephew and sole beneficiery of J. W. Pollie reached the age of 22.


On June 11, the CRTC approved the transfer of control of J. W. Pollie Ltd. (77.9% owner of Rideau Broadcasting Ltd.) from the estate of J. W. Pollie to The Royal Trust Co., sole executor of the estate. The further transfer of a minority interest in Rideau Broadcasting Ltd. from J. W. Pollie Ltd. to Patrick Watson, Hal Botham and Clifford Simpson (proposed Rideau directors) was also approved. There would be a shareholder agreement between JWPL, Watson, Botham and Simpson with respect to control and management of RBL for the period of Royal’s tenure as executor of the Pollie estate (until John Cotton reaches age 22).


At a public hearing in October, 1983, the CRTC considered an application for authority to transfer effective control of Rideau Broadcasting Limited (CJET and CKUE-FM), through the transfer of all issued and outstanding common shares from the existing shareholders to CHEZ-FM Inc. (CHEZ-FM Ottawa), which company was controlled by Harvey Glatt of Ottawa. The Commission considered it vital that the distinct local and regional service provided by CJET and CKUE-FM to this region of the Ottawa Valley not be jeopardized and that this orientation be maintained. In this regard, CHEZ-FM Inc. described the area served by the stations “as something that we would intend to serve as a distinct market place, adjacent to, but intrinsically part of the Ottawa Valley, and the programming would set it apart from Ottawa-based stations.” It also stated that “we feel that we have a positive contribution to make to the Golden Triangle in the Ottawa Valley, and that this contribution is certainly within our capabilities.” In addressing the concerns of the Commission and various interveners that these stations might become Ottawa-oriented stations to the potential detriment of the Smiths Falls area, CHEZ-FM Inc. stated: …, we offer the following guarantees to the Commission, in addition to our plain good faith, to be enforced by conditions of licence: First, the studios of CJET and CKUE-FM shall remain in Smiths Falls; Second, CJET and CKUE-FM shall continue to be operated out of Smiths Falls with a local management team and sales force; Third, CJET and CKUE-FM shall offer predominantly local and regional news, information backgrounding and community services; There shall be no shared personnel and facilities between CHEZ-FM and CJET and/or CKUE-FM; There shall be no joint rate card and sales packaging between CHEZ-FM and CJET and/or CKUE-FM. The Commission further noted that CHEZ-FM Inc. had allocated a substantial budget for the provision of new studio facilities and technical equipment both for CJET and CKUE-FM. Chuck Azzarello, general manager of CHEZ, said the new owners would seek a power increase for CKUE-FM, and would retain the present program formats – country for CJET and ‘mellow rock’ for CKUE. In the context of these applications, the licensee submitted revised Promises of Performance for CJET and CKUE-FM contingent upon the deletion of the condition of licence that CJET operate as a CBC affiliate. The Commission was not prepared to consider such amendments until the licensee had concluded an appropriate agreement with the CBC and, therefore, denied the proposed revisions. The Commission expected the licensee to file new Promises of Performance and seek the approval of the Commission at such time as an agreement was reached with the CBC. The transfer of ownership of CJET/CKUE was approved January 17, 1984. On February 13, the CRTC approved the application by Telemedia Communications Inc. for a licence for an English-language radio network that included CJET, for the purpose of broadcasting the hockey games of the Toronto Maple Leafs during the 1983-84 season of the National Hockey League. 


Craig Steenburgh became news director at CJET/Q-101. He had been assistant news director at CFGO Ottawa.


CKUE-FM became CHEQ.

CJET was among a number of stations in Ontario and Quebec on the regulatory carpet for failure to provide logger tapes. CRTC chairman Andre Bureau warned the C.A.B. about the frequent equipment failures and accidental tape erasures commonly alleged by stations. He said proper equipment is not a discretionary expenditure, and if a licensee cannot or will not assume it, the licensee is not entitled to operate a station.


Brian Perkin was program director for CJET and Q101 FM.


On November 9, CJET had its licence renewed to August 31, 1994. It was also given approval to disaffiliate from the CBC Radio Network once CBO Ottawa completed its conversion to the FM band. (CBO’s conversion took place January 7, 1991).


CHEQ-FM became CFMO-FM. 


Hal Botham died a day before his 61st birthday. Hal was known as the voice of the Ottawa Valley and was in the Ottawa Valley Country Music Hall of Fame. He started at CJET and then moved on to jobs in Montreal, Cornwall and Ottawa. He had returned to CJET/CFMO and had been the morning host at CFMO-FM at the time of his death.


Thought to be the first deal under the CRTC’s new ownership rules, Rogers Broadcasting announced the purchase of Harvey Glatt’s CHEZ-FM Ottawa and CFMO-FM/CJET Smith’s Falls. Rogers already owned CKBY-FM/CIWW in Ottawa. Glatt, who launched CHEZ 21 years ago, was expected to be named director of Canadian music development at Rogers Broadcasting and be appointed to the board of Rogers Media Inc.


Rogers Broadcasting Limited acquired CHEZ-FM Inc., licensee of CHEZ-FM Ottawa and CJET / CFMO-FM.



On March 21, approval was given for the conversion of  CJET from AM to FM. The new station would continue to provide a traditional country music service on 92.3 MHz with an effective radiated power of 9,300 watts. CJET-FM “Country 92” began testing on October 14 and began regular broadcasting on October 27. With the signal now running on FM, CJET 630 left the air forever in November.


On January 9 at 12 noon, CJET-FM with a country format became 92.3 Jack-FM with a classic rock format.


Early on the morning of December 2nd, Ted Rogers, founder and former Chief Executive of Rogers Communications, owners of CJET-FM, died at his home in Toronto, after having suffered from congestive heart failure for some time.


On August 8, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence for CJET-FM until August 31, 2013. 

92.3 JACK FM/Y101 Station Manager/Program Director Doug Anderson retired July 31. He’d been in radio since 1971 and worked with Rogers Radio Ottawa for the past 38 years.


Danny Kingsbury, General Manager for the Rogers Radio stations in Kingston and the Maritimes, added GM responsibilities for the Ottawa cluster in November. This was upon the retirement of Vice President/GM Scott Parsons, a 36-year Rogers vet whose position at retirement was EVP, national capital region, Ontario north and Atlantic Canada. Parsons had been with the Ottawa stations since 1995. Kingsbury, now based in Kingston, would move to Ottawa.


In September, CJET changed from Oldies to a more Contemporary sound, keeping the JACK FM name.

Wayne Cavanagh, after 46 years in broadcasting, most recently as morning host at 92.3 JACK FM, announced his retirement effective December 24. He started his radio career at CKWS Kingston, moved to CKBY Ottawa, returned to CKWS, then to Halifax and back to Ottawa. In 1995, he returned to hometown Smiths Falls.


Doug Anderson (64) died on July 24. His radio career spanned 35 years. Anderson was most recently program director at Country 101.1 and 92.3 Jack FM until his retirement in 2012. Anderson was inducted into the Ottawa Valley Country Music Hall of Fame in 2010.


Gerald Clifford died at age 71 on October 4. Clifford began his broadcasting career at CJET in Smiths Falls, followed by CHOW Welland, and then Mid-Canada Communications in Sudbury and Pembroke. He also spent some time in Sault Ste. Marie.

The story continues elsewhere…
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