CFLZ-FM was first licensed by the CRTC on May 29. For the first few years, the station would apply for short-term licenses to operate at certain times of the year, such as during the Winter Festival of Lights and during the summer tourist season. CFLZ was originally licensed to operate on 91.9 MHz with an effective radiated power of 8 watts, and to broadcast non-commercial, tourist information programming originating from studios in Niagara Falls. The programming consisted of weather, traffic, parking, and bridge conditions, and information relating to events of interest to tourists. The information was repeated several times each hour, and updated regularly.
David Dancy, along with his wife Audrey, started CFLZ. At the start, financial support was provided by the Niagara Parks Commission, the Niagara Falls Bridge Commission and Casino Niagara. CFLZ-FM operated from the studios of CJRN 710 which was owned by David's father Keith J. Dancy.
On June 30, the CRTC approved the application to change the frequency of CFLZ-FM from 91.9 MHz to 105.1 MHz and to increase the effective radiated power from 8 watts to 406 watts. This change was required due to the recent granting of the adjacent 91.7 MHz frequency to CHOW-AM in Welland for its conversion to the FM band.
CFLZ 91.9 began simulcasting on its new 105.1 MHz frequency in December.
On December 2, the CRTC approved applications to amend the licences for CJRN and CFLZ-FM, to allow the two stations exchange programming formats. The licensees of both stations were controlled by members of the family of the late Keith Dancy. CJRN was a commercial AM station owned by CJRN 710 Inc., and had an oldies music format on 710 kHz. CFLZ-FM was a non-commercial tourist information station owned by 788813 Ontario Inc., and operated on 105.1 MHz.
In September, adult contemporary CKEY 101.1 disappeared and was replaced by a synthesized voice doing a strange countdown. Concerned citizens called Niagara Regional Police to find out what was going on as the station gave no explanation. It was a stunt. CKEY's "The River" and its adult contemporary format moved to CJRN's 710 frequency as "The River 710" for a brief time. On September 6, at 6:00 a.m., CKEY 101.1 "The River" officially moved to 105.1 MHz, the former home of CFLZ - the tourist information station - and kept the CFLZ call letters. The adult contemporary format was retained. The 105.1 frequency began broadcasting in stereo with the arrival of the music format. Urban (dance / contemporary hits) formated "Wild 101.1" officially launched on CKEY's 105.1 frequency. It kept the CKEY calls. Tourist information station CFLZ 105.1 officially moved to CJRN 710 and the CJRN calls were retained on 710. In the early going of "Wild 101" (Citadel Communications of Buffalo which had purchased Mercury Broadcasting, programs the station and handles U.S. sales) drew listener complaints (mostly from the American side) about its playing of unedited rap songs...lots of vulgarity.
On June 9, CFLZ was authorized to increase effective radiated power from 406 watts to 7,200 watts.
On December 19, the CRTC approved the transfer of ownership and control of CJRN 710 Inc. (CJRN Niagara Falls, CKEY-FM Fort Erie and CKEY-FM-1 St. Catharines) from Niagara Broadcasting Corp. (controlled by David Dancy) to Northguard Capital Corp. (owned and controlled by Andrew Ferri). This approval also covered the transfer to Northguard of 788813 Ontario Inc. (CFLZ-FM Niagara Falls), once it became a wholly owned subsidiary of CJRN 710 Inc. Northguard would then amalgamate both entities to continue the operation of the undertakings under the name of CJRN 710 Inc.
These applications had already been approved by the CRTC by letter of authority on February 1, 2001, but the authority was never acted upon. It should be noted that although Mr. Ferri would now control all three stations, David Dancy would retain a minority interest and continue on a president.
The amalgamation approved in 2005 was completed in February. David Dancy continued on as president.
On July 11, CFLZ was authorized to decrease average effective radiated power from 7,200 watts to 4,000 watts, decrease antenna height and to relocate the transmitter.
On May 1 the CRTC approved the application by Niagara Radio Group Inc. for authority to acquire (corporate reorganization) from CJRN 710 Inc., the assets of CFLZ-FM Niagara Falls, CKEY-FM Fort Erie and CKEY-FM-1 St. Catharines. Niagara Radio was wholly-owned and controlled by Niagara Media Group Inc., a corporation controlled by Northguard Capital Corp. which in turn was controlled by Andrew Ferri.
On June 8, the CRTC approved the application by Haliburton Broadcasting Group Inc. for authority to acquire from Niagara Radio Group Inc. the assets of CFLZ-FM Niagara Falls and CKEY-FM Fort Erie and its transmitter CKEY-FM-1 St. Catharines. The Commission directed Haliburton to fulfill the shortfalls in CFLZ-FM's and CKEY-FM's Canadian content and talent development contributions for previous broadcast years up to and including the 2009-2010 broadcast year by 31 August 2011. Haliburton was controlled by Christopher Grossman through his ownership and control of Beaumaris Group Inc., Haliburton's controlling shareholder. In accordance with revised approach to non-compliance by radio stations, Broadcasting Information Bulletin CRTC 2011-347, 26 May 2011, the Commission considered that a short-term licence period for CFLZ-FM and CKEY-FM would be appropriate. This short-term licence period would enable the Commission to review the licensee's compliance with the Regulations and its conditions of licence. Accordingly, the licences will expire August 31, 2015, which coincided with the expiry date of the existing licences.
On August 24, CFLZ switched from a Triple A format as the "River" to adult hits as "105.1 Ed FM." New air staff included Kim Rossi and Rob White (mornings), and JT Edwards (afternoons). Rossi would do news on both CFLZ and CKEY and co-host the morning show on CFLZ. Her first day was August 29. Chris Barnatt left CFLZ to take over the morning show at sister station CKEY-FM. Ross Davies was VP of operations for HBG Radio. Michael Haberer was sales manager for the Ed-FM and the New Z101 (CKEY).
Late in the year, CFLZ-FM changed its call letters to CJED-FM (for ED FM). Sister station CKEY-FM became CFLZ-FM.
Kim Rossi, morning show co-host at 105.1 Ed FM resigned from her position. Kim would remain on the air at Ed, until October 25.
On October 19, the CRTC approved the application by Vista Radio Ltd. for authority to acquire from Haliburton Broadcasting Group Inc. the assets of Haliburton's AM and FM radio stations and their transmitters located in Bancroft, Barry's Bay, Bolton, Bracebridge, Caledon, Cochrane, Elliot Lake, Espanola, Fort Erie, Haldimand, Haliburton, Hearst, Huntsville, Iroquois Falls, Kapuskasing, Kemptville, Niagara Falls, North Bay, Parry Sound, Prescott, St. Catharines, Stratford, Sturgeon Falls and Timmins. Vista was a corporation controlled by Westerkirk Capital Inc., in turn controlled by Thompson Investments Limited. CJED-FM was among the stations acquired by Vista.
Rob White, the Program Director at 105.1 ED-FM/Z101, was no longer with the stations. White's time with the operation went back to 1992 when the late Keith Dancy owned CJRN-AM 710, a stand-alone. He was also the morning show host, did the noon-hour show and handled a weekend shift.
Vista Radio announced that Drew Keith was joining the company as Program Director/Operations Manager of the Niagara Falls operations. This move would allow Wendy Gray, as Vice President of News and Digital Content for Vista East, to focus her energy on the East as a whole and aid with the transition of Vista East and West while still being General Manager of Niagara and Caledonia. Drew's career started in Toronto at 97.3 FM and after spending three years at EZ Rock, he moved over to CHFI where he spent 11 years. as Music Director and 3 years as Music Director for the Toronto market overseeing CHFI and Kiss 92. In 2004, Drew became Director of Programming for the Haliburton Broadcasting Group where he spent three years helping build the "Moose FM" brand across the HBG network. For the past 8.5 years he had been working in Hamilton as the Program Director/Operations Manager for CHAM, CKOC, and CKLH. Over these years he had also been a Board Member of Factor, and served as National Program Director for the AC format at Astral.
At 12:00 p.m., CJED 105.1 began simulcasting CHR formatted sister station CFLZ 101.1 (Z101) with both flipping to CHR ("Hit Music Now") as "2DayFM".
2dayFM was off the air late in the year after someone cut a coaxial cable to its 101.1 frequency at the transmitter site. Police said it appeared the person responsible wanted to steal copper. Since 2dayFM's signal operated on two frequencies, listeners were tweeted to tune in to 105.1 instead.
In December, the CRTC denied Vista Radio's application for a suspension of a condition of CFLZ's licence that would allow the station to solicit and accept local advertising. The suspension requested was to be through to the end of its licence term. The Commission noted that Vista converted CFLZ-FM to a full-time rebroadcasting transmitter for 2dayFM (CJED) without getting prior approval. With no local programming originating with CFLZ, the CRTC denied the request for local Fort Erie advertising. The Commission ordered local programming be resumed on CFLZ-FM by December 18. Vista must also apply, by January 26, to convert CFLZ to a rebroadcaster of CJED. The station would still not be allowed to solicit nor accept local Fort Erie advertising.
Bill Dulmage - Updated December 2014