CJBRT-DT, Société Radio Canada, Rimouski

Société Radio Canada

StationYearChannelNetwork AffiliateOwner/Info
CJBR-DT20113.1 (45)SRCSociété Radio Canada
CJBRT-TV19773SRCSociété Radio Canada
CJBRT-TV!9543Radio CanadaBrillant Family


St. Lawrence Radio Inc. received approval to operate a television station, using channel 3 with an effective radiated power of 32,500 watts video and 19,500 watts audio. The company was owned by the Brillant family and had licenses for CJBR-AM and FM.


Government and local officials were on hand for the official opening of CJBR-TV. CJBR president Jacques Brillant officially opened the station. He stated that the station would bring TV to 300,000 people within an 80 mile radius of Rimouski. Monsignor Charles Eugene Parent, Archbishop of Rimouski blessed the transmitter. Among those on hand for the opening: Aurele Seguin, the CBC’s Quebec regional supervisor, Gerard Legard, Liberal MP for Rimouski and Jules Brillant, Liberal Member of the Quebec legislative council for the Gulf of St. Lawrence. The station had been conducting on-air tests since November 21. With a power of 60,000 watts, CJBR-TV was now Quebec’s most powerful TV transmitter. The station broadcast from a tower 1,237 feet above sea leavel on Pic Champlain, 15 miles west of Rimouski. CJBR-TV was a CBC affiliate and the “JBR” in the call letters represented founder, Jules. A. Brillant.

In September, studio construction was now complete and antenna work was well underway. Test Pattern was set to air in mid-October with the grand opening planned for early November.

CJBR-TV signed on the air November 21. The station operated as an affiliate of the CBC. The “JBR” in the calls – for founder Jules. A. Brillant.


Slogan: The only TV station covering Eastern Quebec.

Sample programs at this time: Regional News, Homemaker Show, Sports Column, Saturday Night Jamboree, Harbour Club, Jeannot & Jeanette (children’s show).

CJBR Radio & TV employed 60 people. When the radio station went on the air in 1937, there was a staff of 10.
Slogans: CJBR-TV – The most powerful TV station in the Province of Quebec… 60,000 watts…The only TV station covering Eastern Quebec. / CJBR Television channel 3 Rimouski – Top Shows! Top Talent!

Andre Lecomte was manager at CJBR-TV.

CJBR-TV moved into a new building. The enlarged quarters facilitated live programming at the station.

CJBR-TV was planning to have about 10 hours of live programming each week as of the fall.


CJBR-TV requested to be leased to Central Public Service Corp. Ltd. The CBC Board recommended this for approval as the company was the parent corporation of the licensee.


CJBR-TV linked to Radio-Canada’s microwave network on August 7.
By this time, CJBR-TV operated with 34,000 watts video and 19,400 watts audio. Ownership of Lower St. Lawrence Radio Inc.: Jacques Brillant 0.1%, Aubert Brillant 0.1%, Carol Brillant 0.1%, Central Public Service Corp. Ltd. 99.7%. Ownership of CPSCL: T. A. Bernier 0.02%, Jacques Brillant 19.98%, Aubert Brillant 19.98%, Carol Brillant 20.00%, N. Gendreau 0.02%, Suzanne Brillant 20.00%, and Madeleine Brillant 20.00%. Jacques Brillant was president of the company. Andre Lacombe was manager, operations manager and commercial manager.

By the end of the year, CJBR-TV was listed with an effective radiated power of 60,600 watts video and 34,550 watts audio.


Ad slogan: The fast growing market of “Le bas-St-Laurent” thoroughly covered by Radio CJBR Rimouski / Rimouski CJBR-TV 3.

CJBR-TV received permission to increase effective radiated power from 34,000 watts video and 19,400 watts audio to 49,300 watts video and 28,000 watts audio, and to increase antenna height (above average terrain) from 952 to 986 feet. The CBC Board of Governors said the increase would improve television service to the area.


Ads: CJBR has added a new separate FM radio service to the already existing, CJBR Radio & Television facilities. 101.5 MHz – 20 kW. / The coverage of “Le Bas St-Laurent” is better than ever. Radio CJBR Rimouski – 10,000 watts 900 kcs. CJBR-FM 101.5 Megacycles/sec. 20,000 watts. Rimouski, CJBR-TV 3 100,000 watts channel 3.

A microwave network of seven stations from Rimouski, QC to Campbellton, NB, was now bringing television programs to the Gaspe Peninsula and the Campbellton area. Designed and built by RCA, the network was operated jointly by CP Telegraphs and CN Telegraphs. It was designed to transmit TV programs from the CBC through the control centre at Rimouski. Expansion to Moncton was expected in January of 1961.


On April 1, CJBR opened a rebroadcast transmitter at Edmundston, New Brunswick.


CJBR-TV now had an effective radiated power of 49,300 watts video and 28,000 watts audio. Owner was listed as La Radio de Bas St-Laurent Inc. CJBR-TV had the following rebroadcast transmitters: CJEX-TV Estcourt (channel 70), CFCV-TV Clermont (channel 75) and CJBR-TV-1 Edmunston, N. B. (channel 13).

CJBR-TV was authorized to change effective radiated power for CJBR-TV-1 Edmunston, N.B. to 1,430 watts video and 714 watts audio. The station was also authorized to add a transmitter at Outardes.


CJBR-TV applied to operate a transmitter at Grand Falls, New Brunswick, operating on channel 4 with effective radiated power of 100,000 watts video and 20,000 watts audio. Antenna height would be 240 feet and an omni-directional antenna would be used. The transmitter would receive its programming from CJBR-TV-1 at Edmundston. The application was denied by the BBG.


Telemedia purchased CJBR-AM-FM-TV.


In September, CJBR-TV was authorized to air 30 minutes per week,  programs from CBAFT-TV Moncton.


The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation was given approval to purchase CJBR Radio and Television. CJBR-AM-FM and CJBM Causapscal were acquired from CJBR Radio Ltee while CJBR-TV (and CJBR-TV-1 Edmundston, N.B.) was purchased from CJBR-TV Ltee. All were part of Telemedia Communications. The program source for Edmundston would be changed to CKRT-TV Riviere-du-Loup, via off air pick-up, to provide a better signal. This was to be replaced by microwave reception from Moncton, N.B., by the end of the year. The television call letters changed to CJBRT-TV, but the station would still be known as CJBR-TV.


CJBR-TV-1 was opened at Latour on June 1.


On January 11, the CRTC renewed CJBR-TV’s licence until September 30, 1985.

On March 12, CJBRT moved from channel 3 to channel 2.


Because of budget cuts at the CBC, CBGAT Matane, CJBR-TV Rimouski and CBST Sept-Îles became rebroadcasters of CBVT Quebec City. The CBC said it intended to retain the capability to feed separate station identification, public service announcements and commercial messages to these stations from CBVT.


CJBRT became a rebroadcaster of CBVT Quebec City.


On March 19, the CRTC approved an application by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation to operate a new regional television station in Rimouski. CJBR-TV Rimouski would broadcast a minimum of five hours of local and regional programming. At the CBC’s request, a short-term licence would be issued to the new station so that the licence renewal coincides with the licence renewal for the CBC’s French-language television network. Accordingly, the licence would expire on 31 August 2010. The Commission also approved an application by the CBC to amend the broadcasting licence for station CBVT Québec in order to transfer the following transmitters to the new regional television station CJBR-TV Rimouski:

CBGAT Matane, CBGAT-1 Mont-Climont, CBGAT-2 Murdochville, CBGAT-3 Grande-Vallée, CBGAT-4 Mont-Louis, CBGAT-5 Causapscal, CBGAT-6 Cap-Chat, CBGAT-7 Saint-René-de-Matane, CBGAT-8 Marsoui, CBGAT-9 Gros-Morne, CBGAT-10 Mont-Louis-en-Haut, CBGAT-11 Sainte-Anne-des-Monts, CBGAT-13 Rivière-à-Claude, CBGAT-14 Carleton, CBGAT-15 Chandler, CBGAT-16 Cloridorme, CBGAT-17 Gaspé, CBGAT-18 L’Anse-à-Valleau, CBGAT-19 Lac-Humqui, CBGAT-20 Percé, CBGAT-21 Port-Daniel-Gascons, CBGAT-22 Rivière-au-Renard, CBGAT-23 Les Méchins, CBST Sept-Îles, CJBR-TV-1 Latour, CBST-1 Havre-Saint-Pierre, CBST-6 Rivière-au-Tonnerre, CBST-7 Aguanish-Natashquan, CBST-8 Baie-Johan-Beetz, CBST-9 Gethsémani/La Romaine, CBST-11 Harrington Harbour, CBST-12 Tête-à-la-Baleine, CBST-13 La Tabatière, CBST-14 Saint-Augustin (Saguenay), CBST-15 Old Fort Bay, CBST-16 Rivière-Saint-Paul, CBST-17 Blanc-Sablon, CBST-18 Longue-Pointe-de-Mingan and CBST-19 Baie-Comeau. The CBC stated that its application to amend CBVT Québec’s licence was conditional on approval of the CBC’s application for a broadcasting licence to operate a new regional television station in Rimouski. The licensee indicated that until 1991, it operated regional television stations in eastern Quebec, namely stations CBGAT Matane, CJBR-TV Rimouski and CBST Sept-Îles. Those stations were closed at the licensee’s request and converted to rebroadcasting transmitters for CBVT Québec. The closing of those stations significantly reduced access to local and regional programming for residents of eastern Quebec. The CBC requested the conversion of transmitter CJBR-TV to a regional station in order to continue serving residents of eastern Quebec. The CBC stated that it was planning to increase its commitments with respect to the production of local and regional programming for that region. In addition, the CBC requested authorization to solicit local advertising in the area served by the regional station and its transmitters. It stated that revenue from the sale of local advertising would enable it not only to continue broadcasting the newscast Le Téléjournal Est-du-Québec, but also to convert CJBR-TV Rimouski’s transmitter to digital. Finally, according to the CBC, approval of its application for a new regional station would contribute to the fulfillment of the Commission’s objectives regarding local news and diversity of voices. In addition, the Québec and eastern Quebec regions would benefit from an increase in the CBC’s overall commitment to local and regional programming.

On August 9, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence of CJBR-TV and its transmitters to March 31, 2011.


On March 29, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence for CJBR-TV until August 31, 2012. The Commission noted that it did not intend to renew authorizations for full-power analog transmitters operating in the mandatory markets or on channels 52 to 69 outside the mandatory markets beyond August 31, 2011. By that time, the Commission expected licensees to have the necessary authority to broadcast in digital. In addition, the Commission imposed the following condition of licence on stations that operated in mandatory markets or on channels 52 to 69 outside the mandatory markets: Unless otherwise authorized by the Commission, the licensee shall not transmit analog television signals after 31 August 2011 in mandatory markets designated as such by the Commission in Broadcasting Regulatory Policy 2011-184 or transmit television signals on channels 52 to 69. The CRTC also noted that pursuant to Broadcasting Regulatory Policy 2010-69, it did not intend to renew authorizations to operate transitional digital transmitters included in these licences, beyond August 31, 2011.

On September 1, the CRTC approved an application by the CBC to amend the broadcasting licence for CJBR-TV in order to add a post-transition digital transmitter in Rimouski. The new transmitter CJBR-DT would operate on channel 45 with an average effective radiated power of 110,220 watts (maximum ERP of 167,540 watts with an effective height of antenna above average terrain of 283.4 meters).

The deadline for stations in mandatory markets to switch from analog to digital was August 31. CJBR-TV channel 2 was expected to switch to digital (CJBR-DT) using channel 45 (virtual 2.1) on that date even though the above CRTC approval was not published until September 1.


On July 17, the CRTC approved the request to amend the licences for 23 English- and French-language television stations operated by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in order that reference to all analog transmitters be deleted. The CBC planned to cease operation of all these transmitters on 31 July 2012. The licences for the following transmitters were removed from the CJBR-DT licence:

CBST-7 Aguanish-Natashquan, CBST-19 Baie-Comeau, CBST-8 Baie-Johan-Beetz, CBST-17 Blanc Sablon, CBGAT-6 Cap-Chat, CBGAT-14 Carleton, CBGAT-5 Causapscal, CBGAT-15 Chandler, CBGAT-16 Cloridorme, CBGAT-17 Gaspé, CBST-9 Gethsémani/La Romaine, CBGAT-3 Grande-Vallée, CBGAT-9 Gros-Morne, CBST-11 Harrington Harbour, CBST-1 Havre-St-Pierre, CBST-13 La Tabatière, CBGAT-19 Lac-Humqui, CBGAT-18 L’Anse-à-Valleau, CJBR-TV-1 Latour, CBGAT-23 Les Méchins, CBST-18 Longue-Pointe-de-Mingan, CBGAT-8 Marsoui, CBGAT Matane, CBGAT-1 Mont-Climont, CBGAT-4 Mont-Louis, CBGAT-10 Mont-Louis-en-Haut, CBGAT-2 Murdochville, CBST-15 Old Fort Bay, CBGAT-20 Percé, CBGAT-21 Port-Daniel (partie est), CBGAT-13 Rivière-à-Claude, CBGAT-22 Rivière-au-Renard, CBST-6 Rivière-au-Tonnerre, CBST-16 Rivière-Saint-Paul, CBST-14 Saint-Augustin (Saguenay), CBGAT-11 Sainte-Anne-des-Monts, CBGAT-7 Saint-René-de-Matane, CBST Sept-Îles, and CBST-12 Tête-à-la-Baleine.

On August 9, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence of CJBR-DT until August 31, 2013.


On May 28, the CRTC renewed CJBR-DT’s licence for a five year term, to August 31, 2018.

The story continues elsewhere…
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