CRTC (Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission/Conseil de la radiodiffusion et des télécommunications canadiennes). Established by the Broadcasting Act in 1968 it is an independent agency that regulates and supervises all sectors of the Canadian broadcasting system, including AM and FM radio, television, cable, pay-TV and specialty services. The CRTC grants, amends, or renews licences, monitors the performance of licensees and establishes broadcasting regulations and policies. In 1975 the CRTC Act also assigned to the CRTC responsibility for the regulation of the activities of telecommunications companies (eg, telephone companies) within federal jurisdiction. The CRTC is the successor of the Board of Broadcast Governors (1958-68).

Pursuant to legislation establishing a new Broadcasting Act and amending the CRTC Act the commission's composition (originally 9 full-time and 10 part-time members) was changed in June 1991 to a maximum of 13 full time and 5 part time members appointed for terms not exceeding 5 years. The CRTC's chairmen have been Pierre Juneau 1968-75, Harry Boyle 1975-7, Pierre Camu 1977-9, John Meisel 1980-3, and André Bureau 1983-9, succeedeed by Keith Spicer 1989 While Spicer was absent to head the Citizens' Forum on National Unity, David Colville was chairman 1990-1.

The CRTC at first reported to Parliament through the secretary of state, but early in the 1970s it began reporting through the minister of communications. During the 1970s and 1980s the agency had a significant influence on the expansion of the music industry, especially through its regulations governing Canadian content in radio music programming (a mandatory 30 per cent for AM stations and from 10 to 30 per cent for FM stations). An excerpt from the Radio Regulations, 1986 (as amended August 1991) that govern both AM and FM broadcasting, and in section 2.2, 'Canadian Content,' provides that:

(2) A Canadian musical selection is a selection that

(a) meets at least two of the following conditions, namely,

(i) the music or lyrics are performed principally by a Canadian,

(ii) the music is composed by a Canadian,

(iii) the lyrics are written by a Canadian, and

(iv) the musical selection consists of a live performance that is

(A) recorded wholly in Canada, or

(B) performed wholly in and broadcast live in Canada;

(b) is an instrumental performance of a musical composition that meets the conditions of subparagraph (a)(ii) or (iii); or

(c) is a performance of a musical composition that a Canadian has composed for instruments only.

(3) Except as otherwise provided pursuant to a condition of its license, an AM. or FM. licensee shall, each broadcast week, devote 30 per cent or more of the licensee's musical selections from content category 2 [general popular music] and 10 per cent or more of the licensee's musical selections from content category 3 [traditional and special interest music] to Canadian Selections and schedule those selections in a reasonable manner throughout each broadcast day. (Canada. Broadcasting Act. Radio Regulations, 1986, amendment. Canada Gazette Part II, vol 125, no. 19, 11 Sep 1991)

For the purpose of the Regulations, 'Canadian' means

(a) a Canadian citizen,

(b) a permanent resident, as defined in the Immigration Act, 1976,

(c) a person whose ordinary place of residence was in Canada throughout the six months immediately prededing that person's contribution to a musical composition, performance or concert or to the production of a foreground segment, as defined in Part III, or

(d) a licensee.

(Canada. Broadcasting Act. Radio Regulations, 1986. Canada Gazette, 1 Oct 1986).

See also Broadcasting; Canadian Talent Library Trust; RPM.