Residents in the Sapphire Gemfields won’t miss out on their favourite television shows thanks to a decision at last week’s Communities Standing Committee meeting for council to continue to provide self-help television re-transmission services in the Sapphire Gemfields area.
The Central Highlands Regional Council owns and operates three re-transmission sites that are maintained by transmission consultants and maintenance contractors N-Com.
These sites were originally developed to transmit the analogue television signal to the local communities.
Council upgraded the facilities for digital switchover, but over the past couple of years there has been changes to broadcast frequencies and some equipment failure that resulted in increased costs to provide the service.
Councillors on the Committee were advised that although this is not core council business, if the service was not provided, people in these areas would need to purchase a satellite set top box and dish antenna to connect to the VAST (Viewer Access Satellite Television) network—a cost of about $280.
After considering the alternatives, councillors unanimously decided to retain the service because it is important to tourism and the lifestyle of the people living in the area.