2017 - On May 15, the CRTC approved, in part, an application by Rogers Media Inc. to operate a national, multilingual multi-ethnic discretionary service to be known as OMNI Regional for a licence term of three years, beginning 1 September 2017. Since the application did not fully meet the Commission’s expectations of a service that would receive mandatory distribution on the digital basic service, nor of a service that would fully address and reflect the needs and interests of Canada’s diverse ethnic and third-language communities, the approval of this licence was an interim measure. To better address the need for such a service, in Broadcasting Notice of Consultation 2017-154, also published today, the Commission issued a call for applications for a national, multilingual multi-ethnic television service offering third-language news and information programming that, if licensed, would receive mandatory distribution on the digital basic service. To serve the needs of Canada’s ethnic and third-language communities in the interim, the Commission also approved Rogers Media’s request for mandatory distribution of OMNI Regional on the digital basic service for the licence term.
2019 - OMNI would remain Canada’s national multi-ethnic, multilingual television service, however it would re-launch by the fall of 2020 with a larger commitment to local news and regional programming. On May 23, the CRTC granted Rogers Media a three-year licence to continue operating the service in 20 languages following a competitive process that included three days of hearings in November. The new service, which would succeed the existing OMNI Regional, planned to launch September 1, 2020. Rogers increased commitment included broadcasting at least six hours of local original newscasts per week from Vancouver, Calgary/Edmonton and Toronto; broadcasting a minimum of six daily, original national newscasts, seven days per week in at least six different third languages; and producing at least two hours of programming in Manitoba and/or Saskatchewan and Atlantic Canada each week.