Swiss voters reject plan to end mandatory TV fees - InfoNews

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Swiss voters reject plan to end mandatory TV fees

Laura Zimmermann, Operation Libero, National Councillor Marianne Streiff-Feller, National Councillor Matthias Aebischer, member of the Councillor of States Filippo Lombardi, Joachim Eder, member of the Councillor of States and National Councillor Edith Graf-Litscher, from left, react after the first projections concering the No Billag initiative, on Sunday, April 4. March 2018 in Bern. (Anthony Anex/Keystone via AP)
March 04, 2018 - 5:29 AM

GENEVA - Official results show that Swiss voters have handily rejected a proposal brought by free-market advocates to end mandatory fees to finance publicly supported TV and radio programming.

State-backed broadcaster RTS says a minimum number of Swiss cantons, or regions, turned down the "No Billag" referendum on Sunday, spelling the end of the measure championed by far-right populists and named for the company that collects the fees.

A "yes" would have ended TV license fees of about 450 francs ($480) per year.

The vote had been widely watched by broadcasters across Europe.

The head of German public broadcaster ZDF, Thomas Bellut, hailed the outcome, saying "the Swiss have sent a signal and made clear how important public broadcasters are for a pluralistic society."

News from © The Associated Press, 2018
The Associated Press

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