Rudd Government funds improve ABC services in Illawarra

IMG_1408.JPGMinister for Regional Communications, Sharon Bird and Member for Throsby, Stephen Jones today announced the launch of ABC NewsRadio in Illawarra, broadcast on 90.9FM.

“The Government is proud to support ABC NewsRadio - Australia’s only national, continuous news network, delivering independent news coverage 24 hours a day, seven days a week,” Ms Bird said.

The new service will reach approximately 1.2 million people in the wider Illawarra region and is one of the largest single radio projects ever undertaken in Australia, with 71 new services launched since 2007.

In addition, the ABC in Wollongong will also receive funding of $205,000 to improve the production of local news services.

“ABC Wollongong will benefit from the $10 million ABC News Initiative announced in February 2013 with a new camera operator, new camera kits and live-linking equipment,” Ms Bird said.

ABC Wollongong news and local radio staff will be trained in the use of the lightweight camera gear and laptop-based linking equipment that will enable local interviews and live television crosses from ABC locations around the country.

Mr Jones said while the ABC has an extensive network of regional bureaus, this new equipment will increase the flow of video regional news content to local, national and state audiences across all its platforms, including online.

“The initiative demonstrates our commitment to the Illawarra,” Mr Jones said.

“At a time when commercial radio and television outlets are increasingly ‘hubbing’ or networking out of capital city newsrooms, the Government and the ABC remain committed to local programming and supporting local news coverage.”

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