CICC-TV, CTV, Yorkton

Bell Media Inc.

StationYearChannelNetwork AffiliateOwner/Info
CICC-TV201110CTVCTV Television Network
CICC-TV198610CTVBaton Broadcasting Inc.
CICC-TV197110CTVYorkton Television Ltd.


Yorkton Television Ltd. (the Skinner family – owner of CKOS-TV) applied for a license to operate a CTV outlet in Yorkton. CKOS-TV and the new station would operate on a twin-stick basis.

The new station – CICC-TV – channel 10 – opened in the Fall.


CICC-TV received approval to operate a transmitter at Arabella on channel 7 with an ERP of 3,900 watts (video), direcitonal. A transmitter was also approved for Hudson Bay to rebroadcast the Arabella signal.


CICC-TV received permission to increase effective radiated video power from 39,240 watts to 56,000 watts. Power increases were also approved for CICC-TV-1 Wynyard – 25,000 watts to 56,000 watts, and CICC-TV-2 Norquay 3,900 watts to 7,800 watts. CICC-TV-3 Hudson Bay would decrease ERP from 420 watts to 410 watts.


CFSS-TV Carlisle Lake was authorized to disaffiliate from CBC network (CKOS-TV rebroadcaster) and become a transmitter of CICC-TV and operate as a CTV affiliate.


CICC-TV received approval to add rebroadcast transmitters at Esterhazy (channel 13 with 5.5 watts) and Humboldt (channel 32 with 6.7 watts).


On August 12, a reorganization of the share structure of Yorkton Television Ltd. was approved by the CRTC. 34.5% of the common shares held jointly by G. S. and R. L. Skinner, and ten common shares held by G. S. Skinner, would be transferred to R. L. Skinner, L. R. Skinner, K. D. South and R. A. Skinner. Indirect control would then change with the transfer of 50% of the voting shares of Skinner Holdings Ltd. from G. S. Skinner to R. L. Skinner. Skinner Holdings held 63% of Yorkton Television. As a result of these transfers, R. L. (Ron) Skinner increased his ownership of Yorkton from 32% to approximately 81%.

Yorkton Television Co. announced the appointment of Wib Westby to general manager and Linus Westberg to assistant general manager.


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

Yorkton Television purchased CKBI-TV and CIPA-TV Prince Albert.


Baton Broadcasting Inc. of Toronto announced plans to make two major purchases in Saskatchewan that would give it domination of the province with only one exception – CJFB-TV Swift Current. Baton already owned CFQC-TV Saskatoon and had now agreed to buy (90%) CKCK-TV Regina from Harvard Developments Ltd. Harvard in turn would purchase 10% of CFQC-TV and would participate in the management of both stations. Baton had owned CFQC-TV (and AM) for 14 years. The deal came only two weeks after Baton agreed to buy Yorkton Television (CKOS-TV/CBC and CICC-TV/CTV Yorkton and CKBI-TV/CBC Prince Albert). Joe Garwood, vice president and managing director of Baton, said the purchases would create a large unit capable of taking on new challenges, such as the recent approval for CanWest Broadcasting to operate new TV stations at Regina and Saskatoon (SaskWest Television Inc.). The CRTC had described CKCK-TV and CFQC-TV as being among the most profitable TV stations in Canada.

A CRTC hearing in April was to hear proposals by Baton to acquire Yorkton Television Co. Ltd. and Prince Albert TV Inc. Prince Albert TV had also applied for a new CTV station at Prince Albert (channel 9 with 27,000 watts video ERP), which if licensed, would be part of the Baton purchase. Included in the deal were some 14 rebroadcast transmitters of the three existing stations. The CKCK-CFQC deal was also to be heard. If approved (Baton 90%, Harvard 10%), both stations would be owned by limited partnerships in each city. The Baton subsidiaries involved in the deals were CFTO-TV Ltd. and Russwood Broadcasting Ltd.

The Baton Saskatchewan deals were approved by the CRTC. This included the application for the new CTV affiliate at Prince Albert. The resulting new twin-stick operation in Prince Albert would employ 15 additional staff. Baton planned to spend $5.6 million to upgrade studio and production facilities, $2.8 million for transmitting facilities, $2.3 million for a 2-way microwave system, and over $1 million for drama production. 44 new jobs were expected to be created. There would be increased regional programming, including a major provincial Mon-Fri 6:30 p.m. newscast, and expanded availability of the CBC network. Baton also undertook provisions to ensure the continued viability of CJFB-TV Swift Current, the only independent TV station left in Saskatchewan.

Baton Broadcasting made the following appointments: R.L. Skinner to president of Shamrock Television Systems Inc., Bruce Cowie to president of CKCK-TV Ltd. and Dennis Fisher to president CFQC Radio. Shamrock was the Baton subsidiary that took ownership of the Prince Albert and Yorkton television stations.


James Fusnak was appointed executive vice president and general manager of Russwood Broadcasting, the company which managed a number of Saskatchewan television stations owned by Baton Broadcasting. In a related move, Ronald Skinner, president of Shamrock Television of Yorkton, was promoted to executive vice president of Russwood.

Changes at Baton Saskatchewan’s Russwood Broadcasting: James Rusnak, executive vice president and general manager; Ronald Skinner, executive VP; Mel Friesen, general manager of CKCK-TV; Howard Cooper, president and general manager of CFQC-TV; Leon Brin, VP and GM of CKBI-TV and CFQC-TV.


Baton Broadcasting’s CKCK-TV Regina, CFQC-TV Saskatoon, CKBI-TV and CIPA-TV Prince Albert and CKOS-TV and CICC-TV Yorkton all had their licenses renewed to June 30, 1996. The stations were owned or controlled by Baton’s Russwood Broadcasting, which had spent a total of $16.1 million on the stations, including construction of a microwave system linking the four broadcast centres


At BBS Saskatchewan: Shirley Stus became sales manager. She had been regional sales rep. Bruce Acton became director of communications while keeping his position as CFQC-TV promotion manager. David Fisher became creative director and CFQC-TV creative services manager. Michael Fulmes became executive producer, working out of CKCK-TV.

CFQC-TV General Manager Howard Cooper and Vice President of programming Bill Stevenson were given early retirement packages. 34 other BBS SK employees were laid off at CKCK-TV (12), CICC-CKOS (12) and CIPA-CKBI (10). A change would see the jobs of reporters and camera operators combined into photo journalists.


Baton eliminated the job of president of its Saskatchewan group of stations, leaving Deryl Ring out of a job after four years in that position. Managers in the province now reported to Fred Filthaut at CFRN-TV Edmonton.


After purchasing the CTV Television Network, Baton Broadcasting Inc. changed its name to CTV Inc. The name change was effective December 21.


Bell Globemedia (Bell Canada Enterprises, Thomson Canada Ltd., and The Woodbridge Co. Ltd.) purchased CTV Inc.

On September 1st, CICC-TV was rebranded as CTV Yorkton.


The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation received CRTC approval to purchase CKOS-TV. CTV Inc. retained CICC-TV.


On July 21, the CRTC approved an application for ownership restructuring by Bell Globemedia (BGM), parent company of CTV, stemming from a deal in December 2005 that saw two new investors added to the company. Thomson family’s Woodbridge Co. Ltd. increased its stake in BGM to 40 per cent from 31.5 per cent, while BCE Inc. reduced its holding to 20 per cent from 68.5 per cent. Two other investors were added to the deal, including Torstar Corp. and Ontario Teachers Pension Plan, each with 20 per cent.

On December 14th, it was announced that effective January 2007, Bell Globemedia would be renamed CTVglobemedia Inc.


On May 15th, the CRTC announced a one-year licence renewal, effective September 1st 2009, for all of CTVglobemedia’s Over-The-Air stations, including CICC-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.”


It was expected that, by summer, CTV Calgary would host master control for most of the Western Canadian CTV stations: four in Saskatchewan, three in Alberta, CTV Vancouver and BC Interior feeds.

On October 7, the CRTC denied an application by CTVglobemedia Inc., on behalf of its wholly owned subsidiary CTV Television Inc., to reduce the overall minimum level of Canadian programming broadcast by its conventional television stations from 60% to 55%.


On March 7, the CRTC approved an application by BCE Inc. on behalf of CTVglobemedia Inc., for authority to change the effective control of CTVgm’s licensed broadcasting subsidiaries to BCE. The Commission concluded that the transaction would be beneficial to the Canadian broadcasting system by ensuring the long-term stability of a significant Canadian television network and advancing the Commission’s objective of providing relevant high-quality Canadian programming to Canadians through conventional and new media distribution channels. BCE was a public corporation and controlled by its board of directors. Before this approval, BCE held 15% of the voting interest in the capital of CTVgm. The other shareholders were 1565117 Ontario Limited (a corporation ultimately controlled by Mr. David Kenneth R. Thomson) (40% of the voting interest), Ontario Teacher’s Plan Board (25% of the voting interest) and Torstar Corporation (20% of the voting interest). Under the transaction agreement dated September 10, 2010, BCE would acquire the remaining 85% of the voting interest in the capital of CTVgm and would therefore exercise effective control.

On March 15, CTV Inc., CTV Corp., CTV Limited and CTVglobemedia Inc. amalgamated to continue as CTV Inc.

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 CRTC 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.

BCE Inc. announced on April 1 that it had completed its acquisition of CTV and that it had launched Bell Media (replacing CTVglobemedia), a new business unit that would make CTV programs and other Bell content available on smartphones and computers as well as traditional television. In addition to CTV and its television stations, Bell Media now also operated 29 specialty channels, 33 radio stations, Dome Productions, a mobile broadcast facilities provider, and dozens of high-traffic news, sports and entertainment websites, including the portal.

The CRTC approved the deletion of the transmitter CIWH-TV-1 Humboldt. The area served by the Humboldt transmitter was covered by the B+32 contour of both CFQC-TV Saskatoon as well as CIWH-TV Wynyard (rebroadcaster of CICC-TV). The transmitter had not been operational for some time and this had not caused any disruption to viewers in the areas served by CICC-TV Yorkton.

On July 27, the CRTC renewed the licence for CICC-TV and its transmitters CICC-TV-2 Norquay, CICC-TV-3 Hudson Bay, CIEW-TV Warmley, and CIWH-TV Wynyard, until August 31, 2016. The Commission noted the licensee’s commitment to broadcast 2.5 hours of local programming per week, averaged over the broadcast year.

The CRTC approved a change to the ownership of Bell Media Inc., from BCE Inc. to Bell Canada. This transaction would not affect effective control of Bell Media Inc. and of its licensed broadcasting subsidiaries, which continued to be exercised by BCE Inc. Bell Media Inc. held, directly and through its licensed broadcasting subsidiaries, various radio and television programming undertakings as well as specialty and pay-per-view television services.


Wade Moffatt, the Vice President & General Manager of CTV Saskatchewan’s four stations (Regina, Saskatoon, Yorkton and Prince Albert), was no longer with Bell Media. Moffatt had been with CTV for 21 years.


David Fisher was the new Vice President/General Manager of CTV Saskatchewan, overseeing the CTV stations in Regina, Saskatoon, Yorkton and Prince Albert. Most recently, he was manager of promotions and advertising for CTV Edmonton and CTV Two Alberta.


When the CICC licence was renewed in May, CICC‐TV‐2 Norquay, CICC‐TV‐3 Hudson Bay, CIEW‐TV Warmley and CIWH‐TV Wynyard were removed from the licence at the request of Bell Media. The existing licence would expire August 31, 2017.

It was announced in June that CTV Yorkton would begin airing a 5:00 p.m. weekday newscast in the fall (simulcast from CTV Regina). This move was being made by all CTV stations not already airing news in this time period.


Rodney Merritt, 67, died on July 15. Merritt was a sales representative with CTV Yorkton for nearly 40 years. Merritt was inducted into the Yorkton Sports Hall of Fame and Canadian Broomball Hall of Fame. He was also a Canadian 9-ball billiards champion.

The story continues elsewhere…
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