Regional commercial radio stations will be able to apply for funding to assist with the cost of hiring journalism cadets under the Federal Government’s Regional and Small Publishers Cadetships Program.
The program will provide a wage subsidy or grant of up to $40,000 per journalism cadet, to help boost employment opportunities in regional media and support regional news outlets to better compete with global internet giants.
Joan Warner, chief executive officer of peak industry body Commercial Radio Australia, welcomed the inclusion of radio in the program.
“Given local content requirements and the central role of regional radio in providing news, community service announcements and emergency information, it will be pleasing see local broadcasters’ contribution assisted in this way,” Ms Warner said.
“In some regional areas, including Mudgee, Taree, Innisfail, Griffith, Sale and Wangaratta, there is no daily local print media outlet, so radio holds a particularly important role in providing the community with live daily local news.”
Research by the Australian Communication and Media Authority into local content in regional Australia in 2017 found that 73% of respondents reported that commercial radio is the most common source of local content and 72% said commercial radio provides local news where they live.
The Government program will support 200 cadetships over two years. One hundred cadetships will be offered in the first round, with applications open now until 27 July 2018. Employing organisations are expected to provide matched funding. More information and eligibility guidelines are available at www.communications.gov.au/regional-innovation