The Broadcasting Commission of Jamaica is the statutory body established by the Broadcasting and Radio Re-Diffusion Amendment Act of 1986 to monitor and regulate the electronic media in Jamaica. This includes free-to-air radio and television, as well as subscriber television (STV) or Cable.
The Commission provides the following services:
Administration of the Act
The Commission administers the Broadcasting and Radio Re-Diffusion Act, 1995 and the Television and Sound Broadcasting Regulations, 1996, ensuring that they give structure and direction to the media the Commission oversees.
The Act and Regulations govern the Commission’s discharge of its mandate by defining the body’s administrative structure, role and authority.
Recommendations for Licences
One of the Commission’s main functions is to recommend to the Minister of Information which applicants should receive licences for radio, television and subscriber television (STV) services. It also recommends the terms and conditions under which those licences should be granted and renewed. Applicants for licences are expected to meet certain programming, technical, and financial standards and be able to provide a satisfactory level of service.
Maintenance of Standards
The Commission is required to see that the operations and programming of the licensees it regulates meet the standards set out in law.
The Commission also monitors licensees to see whether they are meeting the required technical standards set out in the Regulations.
Advice to Policy Makers
While the Commission does not formulate media regulatory policy, it does contribute to the discussions out of which policy comes, through the submission of information to the policy makers, which is the Information Division of the Office of the Prime Minister.
The Commission has the mandate to carry out or commission research on all areas relating to the electronic media in Jamaica. Such information guides the Commission when proposing policy changes, and formulation of standards for licensees’ operations.
Chairman - Professor Hopeton Dunn, director, Telecommunications Policy + Management Programme at the Mona School of Business, UWI
Elaine Foster-Allen, educator
Neville James, communications consultant
Sheena Johnson-Brown, lecturer in Communications at UTECH
Hycainth Lindsay, attorney-at-law
Reverened Canon Peter Mullings, cleric
Maxim Rochester, chartered accountant
Rosemarie Vernon, educator
Dr. Elaine Wallace, communications lecturer and administrator
*Appointed effective November 1, 2011 for 5 years