CFSK-DT, Global, Saskatoon
|Global Television Network
|Global Television Network
SaskWest Television Inc. (CanWest Broadcasting Ltd.) filed an application for a new TV station to cover the Regina/Moose Jaw area. Later in the year the CRTC called for new television applications for both Regina and Saskatoon. Two other companies filed applications – Harvard Developments and Allarcom Ltd.
All three applicants had planned to use channel 13 in Regina, which the CBC planned to relinquish when it had built a new transmitter site at Belle Plaine. However, in January of 1985, the CBC postponed that project due to financial restraints making channel 13 unavailable. As a result, revised applications were filed and the CRTC held a public hearing in Regina in June.
The broadcast regulator announced the approval of the SaskWest application. The company would use channel 11 at Regina (effective radiated power of 159,000 watts) and channel 4 at Saskatoon (ERP of 57,000 watts). It was expected the new stations would launch in September of 1986. Don Brinton said the company would spend $6 million to establish the two stations which would operate 24 hours a day and employ about 120 people. It was estimated the two stations would reach 500,000 viewers in the province. Allarcom and Harvard had proposed relaying the signal of CITV Edmonton via satellite, adding local programs and ads for distribution on cable TV. Allarcom would run the Saskatoon operation while Harvard would participate and supply studio facilities in Regina. Only the SaskWest application called for the use of over-the-air transmitters.
Harvard and Allarcom appealed the decision to both the Federal Court of Appeal and the Federal Cabinet. The Cabinet instructed the CRTC to reconsider its SaskWest decision – a first in CRTC history.
The CRTC held a two-day hearing in Regina to reconsider its decision and re-hear arguments.
After appropriate reconsideration, the CRTC again approved the application by SaskWest Television Inc.
Over the next 16 months, a team of CanWest/SaskWest technical, operational and programming personnel, headed by President Don Brinton, built two new Television stations, with all-new production, news, administration and transmitting facilities in Regina and Saskatoon. The studios and offices were identical in both cities. They were officially named in the broadcast licences as CFSK-TV Saskatoon and CFRE-TV Regina.
Rick Friesen, formerly assistant manager at CKBI-TV Prince Albert, and SaskWest’s project co-ordinator, was named station manager of STV Saskatoon. Fred Filthaut, previously assistant manager of CFAC-TV Lethbridge, was appointed station and operations manager of STV Regina. Both stations were scheduled to go on the air September 6, 1987.
On September 6th at 7:00 pm, both stations were officially opened simultaneously by Chairman/Owner I. H. Asper.
A half-hour news magazine – Eyes West – was now airing on STV Regina and Saskatoon. The bi-weekly show, a tri-production of two STV stations as well as co-owned CKND-TV Winnipeg, dealt with topics of concern to western Canadians.
Promoted on the air initially as SK Regina and SK Saskatoon and then changed a few years later to “Global Regina” and “Global Saskatoon”.
Rick Friesen was CFSK-TV’s station manager. Steve Legault was news director. He had been with CKRD-TV Red Deer.
The National Edition of Global News – renamed The World Tongiht – was now airing on STV.
Peter Liba became president of Sask West Television and Winnipeg’s CKND-TV.
Stan Thomas was appointed vice-president of programming for Sask-West Television and for Winnipeg’s CKND-TV.
Don Brinton was named president and CEO of CanWest Broadcasting, CanWest Pacific Television Inc., and Western Approaches Ltd. Peter M. Liba, executive vice president, succeeded Brinton as president of SaskWest TV and CKND-TV.
Bernie Sutton was named news anchor of the 6:00 and 10:30 p.m. newscasts. She had been assignment editor and 12:30 p.m. news anchor for CFSK-TV.
Linda Walker was appointed sports reporter and weekend sports anchor at STV Saskatoon.
STV Saskatoon moved Roger Millions to the sports director post. He succeeds Wray Morrison who became an account executive.
Rick Friesen was general manager of STV Saskatoon.
On March 10, the CRTC announced an amendment for CFSK-TV concerning the airing of infomercials. In addition to the 12 minutes of advertising material permitted by subsection 11(1) of the Television Broadcasting Regulations, 1987, the licensee may broadcast more than 12 minutes of advertising material in any clock hour in a broadcast day, in order to broadcast infomercials as defined in Public Notice CRTC 1994-139 and in accordance with the criteria contained in that public notice, as amended.
Peter Liba, CanWest Global Communications executive vice president and executive director, became Manitoba’s newest Lieutenant-Governor, effective in February. Liba was honored in 1998 as the Western Association of Broadcasters Broadcaster of the Decade and by the Canadian Association of Broadcasters in November when he was inducted into the Canadian Broadcast Hall of Fame.
At Global Saskatoon, Chris Harris, formerly of the Prince Albert Daily Herald, was the station’s new sports reporter and anchor. David Bastl, formerly with Global Alberta, was also a new sports reporter/anchor at CFSK-TV.
Approval was granted for the transfer of ownership of CanWest MediaWorks Inc. through the transfer of the beneficial ownership of CanWest Global Communications Corp., the parent corporation of CMI, from Mrs. Ruth Asper to David, Gail and Leonard Asper, holding together, through their personal holdings, 88.95% of the voting rights of CGCC.
In April Station Manager/Sales Manager Brian Main left Global Saskatoon for a position with Cameco. In May Wayne Rorke was named to fill the position.
On May 15th, the CRTC announced a one-year licence renewal, effective September 1st 2009, for all of CanWest’s Over-The-Air stations, including CFSK-TV, “….to give these broadcasters some flexibility during the current period of economic uncertainty.” Group-based licence renewals would then be addressed in the spring of 2010. The Commission also stated that it recognized the impracticability of imposing any conditions relative to 1-1 ratios between Canadian and non-Canadian programming in the ensuing year, given the programming commitments that were already in place.
The Commission would however continue to explore various regulatory measures “…to ensure that English-language television broadcasters devote an appropriate proportion of their expenditures to Canadian programming.”
On October 22, the CRTC approved an application by Shaw Communications Inc., on behalf of Canwest Global Communications Corp., for authority to change the effective control of Canwest Global’s licensed broadcasting subsidiaries, which will henceforth be exerciced by Shaw. This change would be effected through a wholly-owned subsidiary of Shaw known as 7316712 Canada Inc. Upon the closing of the proposed transaction, Shaw, through its wholly-owned subsidiary 7316712 Canada, would become the sole owner of Restructured Canwest and of CWI, and would acquire control of all broadcasting undertakings currently controlled by Canwest Global. Shaw ascribed a total value of $2.005 billion for the acquisition of all broadcasting assets controlled by Canwest Global and initially proposed a tangible benefits package in the amount of $23 million.
Events leading up to the October 22, 2010 decision: On October 6, 2009, Canwest Global, along with its operating subsidiary Canwest Media Inc. and certain other subsidiaries, filed for creditor protection under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act, R.S.C. 1985 c. C-36, as amended. At the beginning of November, Canwest Global, with the assistance of RBC Capital Markets, initiated an equity solicitation process to identify potential new Canadian investors. On February 19, 2010, after arm’s length negotiations between Shaw, Canwest Global and the Ad Hoc Committee (comprised of holders of over 70% of the 8% senior subordinated notes issued by Canwest Investments Co., due 2012), Canwest Global’s board approved Shaw’s offer. On March 31, Shaw filed an application with the CRTC for approval of its acquisition of effective control of the conventional and specialty television undertakings indirectly owned by Canwest Global. Under that original offer, Shaw was to subscribe for Class A Voting shares representing a 20% equity and 80% voting interest in Restructured Canwest for a minimum $95 million in the aggregate. On May 3, Shaw scquired from Goldman Sachs & Co. affiliates 29.9% of the voting shares and 49.9% of the common non-voting shares in the capital of CWI. On May 4, Shaw advised the CRTC that, pursuant to an amendment to the March 31 application, Shaw’s indirect equity interest would be 100% of Restructured Canwest. Shaw also advised that, in addition to acquiring the shares of CWI indirectly held by Canwest Global, it would acquire, by way of an option, the remaining shares in the capital of CWI, held by Goldman Sachs entities, immediately following Commission approval of the application. On May 18, Canwest Global filed an application for authority to effect a multi-step corporate reorganization for restructuring purposes, as contemplated in the document entitled “Plan of Compromise, Arrangement and Reorganization”, of the Canwest Global licensed broadcasting subsidiaries pursuant to the CCAA, resulting in the issuance of new broadcasting licences. On July 28, at the end of the CCAA Proceedings, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice rendered an Order approving the Plan.
On October 27, Shaw Communications announced it had reached the final stage in its purchase of Canwest’s television operations. There would be a gradual shift of branding to Shaw Media, and the company would gradually retire the Canwest name. Shaw would also close the Canwest corporate headquarters in Winnipeg. Shaw announced a new management team for the broadcasting division. It would be headed by Paul Robertson, who previously served as president of Shaw-controlled Corus Entertainment’s television division and oversaw the purchase of the Canwest assets.
Ian Haysom was now regional director of news for Global Saskatchewan and British Columbia, based in Vancouver where he had been news director for the last nine years. News anchor Danelle Boivin left Global Saskatoon to become 6:00 p.m. co-anchor at CTV Regina.
Esther Madziya left Global Saskatoon to become morning news anchor at CJOC-FM Lethbridge.
The CRTC approved an amendment to the licence of conventional television station CFSK-TV to add a post-transition digital television transmitter on channel 42 with a maximum effective radiated power of 30,000 watts (average ERP of 17,800 watts). A directional antenna would be use with an effective height above average terrain of 200.5 metres from the existing CBC tower. Programming would be fed to the transmitter by microwave.
On March 29, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence for a number of conventional television and transitional digital television stations until August 31, 2011. The Commission said it would consider the applications for renewal of the broadcasting licences for the major English-language private conventional television ownership groups, by taking into account the determinations set out in Broadcasting Regulatory Policy 2010-167. These applications were announced in Broadcasting Notice of Consultation 2010-952 and would be heard at a public hearing to be held on 4 April 2011 in Gatineau, Quebec. Shaw Television G.P. Inc. (the general partner) and Shaw Media Global Inc.(the limited partner), carrying on business as Shaw Television Limited Partnership (The limited partner changed name on 3 December 2010 from 7509014 Canada Inc. to Shaw Media Global Inc.). The CRTC noted that it does 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 the stations that operate 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 Commission also noted that, pursuant to Broadcasting Regulatory Policy 2010-69, it does not intend to renew, beyond 31 August 2011, authorizations for the transitional digital transmitters included in the broadcasting licences of the licensees set out in the appendix to this decision.
On July 27, the CRTC renewed the licence for CFSK-DT until August 31, 2016.
CFSK-DT channel 42 (virtual channel 4.1) signed on the air April 15. August 31 was the deadline for the conversion of analog to digital for television stations in mandatory markets. CFSK-TV channel 4 (analog) was shut down on that date and broadcasting continued on digital channel 42.
Jack Haskins, formerly of Newcap TV Loydminister, was now a Sports Anchor/ Reporter at Global Saskatoon. He’s the son of Jim Haskins who runs the CBC Alberta sales team from his base in Edmonton.
Rena Montgomerie was elevated to the role of Assignment Editor at Global Saskatoon. She’d been a reporter there the past 22 years.
In April Wayne Rorke stepped down as Station Manager and News Director Lisa Frod succeeded him.
Global Regina and Global Saskatoon celebrated their 25th anniversaries. They began life as STV Regina and STV Saskatoon on September 6, 1987. It was the first time that a Canadian broadcaster put out two simultaneous over-the-air signals in two different cities. In 1990, both stations joined CanWest Global and in 1997 were rebranded as Global Regina and Global Saskatoon. The Global network was acquired by Shaw in 2010.
Senior Global News team changes: Boston Kenton, the Senior Director, National News and Global Vancouver Station Manager, was promoted to VP, BC and National News; Mike Omelus, the Eastern Regional Director responsible for Global Maritimes, Global Montreal and Global Winnipeg, was promoted to Senior Director, Southern Alberta; Tim Spelliscy, the Regional Director, News, AB and Station Manager at Global Edmonton, was promoted to Senior Director, Edmonton and Prairie Region; and Ward Smith was promoted from News Director/Station Manager at Global Toronto to Senior Director, Eastern Region. Boston continued responsibility for all national and foreign news operations, including the Ottawa Bureau and The West Block, as well as all BC news operations, including CHBC/Global Okanagan; Omelus moved to Calgary and was responsible for all Global News operations in Calgary and Lethbridge, and would work with Shaw on community engagement strategies and develop models for delivering Global News to new markets; Spelliscy continued to oversee operations at the Edmonton production centre, and had new responsibilities for Global Saskatoon, Global Regina and Global Winnipeg; and Smith remained in charge of Global Toronto as well as Global Montreal and Global Maritimes, as well as the Network Resource Centre based in Toronto. Moving to Vancouver and reporting to Boston was Jeff Bollenbach, the Station Manager/News Director at Global Calgary. He would work preparing the new BC regional 24/7 news channel (BC-1) for its anticipated launch on March 1.
Rena Montgomerie, in another promotion, was upped to managing editor at Global Saskatoon. Seven months ago, she was promoted to assignment editor after 22-years as a reporter at the station.
On March 23, the CRTC approved an application by Shaw Communications Inc. on behalf of Shaw Media Inc. and its licensed subsidiaries, for authority to effect a multi-step corporate reorganization by transferring all of Shaw Communications’ shares in Shaw Media to Corus Entertainment Inc. or one of its subsidiaries. Since the creation of Corus in 1999, the Commission had regarded the two companies to be effectively controlled by J.R. Shaw and this reorganization wouldn’t change that. The deal was expected to close on April 1. In early April, Corus Entertainment completed its $2.65 billion acquisition of Shaw Media. Corus now had 45 specialty TV services, 15 conventional TV channels, 39 radio stations, a global content business, and a portfolio of digital assets.
In September, Lisa Ford announced her retirement from Global Saskatoon (as of December 15), after more than 30 years with the station. Lisa was part of the original on-air team when the station launched as STV in 1987.
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.