CRTC approves purchase of CJMS 1040 AM


CJMS 1040 AM St-Constant, Montreal’s French-language country music station, has been given the go-ahead for a new life.

On Thursday, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission approved a change in ownership of the station, from 3553230 Canada inc., a company owned by Alexandre Azoulay, to Groupe Médias Pam inc., owned by Jean Ernest Pierre. The latter also owns Montreal Haitian station CJWI 1410 AM, CPAM Radio Union.

The sals is for $15,000 plus an hour’s worth of advertising airtime a week for a year (52 hours total). Because it’s a purchase of a station that was losing money, and will require investments to bring it into compliance with its obligations, the CRTC did not impose additional tangible benefits on the transaction.

Much of what the station will look like under the new owners has already become evident. It launched new branding and a new website, and is simulcasting a news show from CJWI during rush hours (6-9am and 4-6pm weekdays). The new owners promise that the rest of the schedule will be unique to CJMS, that it will not air ethnic programming, and that it will continue to serve the community of St-Constant.

The new owner also told the commission that the plan is to modernize the music at CJMS and bring in more contemporary country.

The sale follows a bizarre hearing last year in which Azoulay blamed serious and repeated failures to comply with CRTC licence obligations on his father’s dementia, a statement that left commissioners dumbfounded.

The commission responded by imposing mandatory orders on CJMS requiring it to come into compliance with its licence, with the threat of contempt-of-court charges if they don’t. Those orders have been maintained under the new owner.

The change in ownership comes with a new licence and de facto renewal until Aug. 31, 2017. The three-year licence term reflects the fact that CJMS has repeatedly failed to meet its regulatory obligations.

9 thoughts on “CRTC approves purchase of CJMS 1040 AM

  1. Sheldon Harvey

    I still fail to understand the relevance in the main target area of the station to rebroadcast the CJWI morning and afternoon drive shows. Also bizarre is the broadcasting of Laval Predateurs hockey broadcasts. One would think that you might want to serve your target audience during the peak times of the day with programming from the region. Instead they put the Haitian station’s morning show on and relegate what they call local programming to other times of the day. It is all very strange; not to mention the bargain basement price of $15,000.

    1. Brett Morris

      I would think they would have more local morning and afternoon programming rather then reproadcast programming from CJWI.

  2. mike mathieu

    the CRTC is dum in approving the cjms pam application as i am the person who originally got cjms back on the air in 1999 and gat screewed by the azoulay and as i was present at the hearing in nov 2013 1) i fuuly agree with Sheldon Harvey s comment and i state that the azoulay are still invalved in cjms as this is a (private) arrangement between the Azoulay s and Jean Ernest Pierre to witch i have doubts about honesty. MIKE MATHIEU broadcast consultant founding president of cjms country in 1999.

  3. Mimo

    How is having Laval Predateurs hockey games not serving the local audience? CJMS is still a local station to Laval. Every time I’ve stayed in Laval, the signal has been great, day and night. Better than some of the other locals.

    1. Fagstein Post author

      CJMS is still a local station to Laval.

      It’s not. CJMS is licensed to serve St-Constant, on the South Shore, where its transmitter is located. It’s expected to have programming targetting that community.

    2. Brett Morris

      It’s not ment to have programming for stuff outside of its licence community. It’s supposed to be a local station for St-Constant. They could have aired games from Ligue Hockey Adulte Isatis which is local hockey, instead of Laval Hockey.

    3. Sheldon Harvey

      Perhaps it would make more sense for the 1570 AM station in Laval to carry the Laval hockey games, wouldn’t you think? Lots of stations can be heard outside of areas they are licensed to serve. The issue with CJMS 1040 is that its reason for being is to serve the community they are licensed to serve. How carrying the Haitian station’s morning and afternoon drive shows makes any sense is beyond me. To my knowledge there is no substantial Haitian community in south-western Quebec. CJWI moved their transmitter site to St-Constant and put a lot of money and work into building the transmitter site there. The connection between the two stations has always seemed somewhat strange. Now it has become stranger.

      1. Mimo

        I can totally agree with you, Sheldon, the games should for all intents and purposes be on 1570. I also agree with the CJWI simulcast being beyond redundant. 2 stations from the same tower with the same programming during drive time is overkill.
        I consider the south shore to be the Montreal Market and Laval to be the Montreal Market as well, and that was what I meant by local service. 2 ends of the same market. Yes there should definitely be more programming towards the south shore. I have read that some Haitians have moved to the south shore area, and that might explain 1410, but 2 stations serving a small population, where the vast majority live in the city of Montreal proper is an odd situation.

        1. Sheldon Harvey

          CJWI applied and was awarded the 1410 frequency in order to better reach their listening audience, which the new frequency and transmitter site achieved, so why would they need to have their morning and afternoon shows on another transmitter (1040) when their 1410 signal can easily be heard in the area and beyond? This whole situation seems very strange and, given the strikes against CJMS with the CRTC, it’s even more strange that all of this is being done with the CRTC’s approval.


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