The public sector union has claimed that up to 50 jobs in the ABC’s Hobart production unit could be cut if the show isn’t a success.
Community Services Minister Cassy O’Connor has told Tasmanian Parliament that cuts to local programming could put the ABC in breach of its charter.
“We run the very real risk, Mr Speaker, of losing those highly creative and talented staff to the mainland, to Sydney and Melbourne.
“If we don’t do something about it, if we don’t stand up to the ABC nationally, that is where production will be centralised,” she said.
The Premier said such a move could jeopardise the future of the broadcast industry in the state.
“We want to ensure that we don’t lose what is good about what they have been able to provide in regional Australia, particularly here in Tasmania, because we don’t have access to what training is available, what equipment that’s available that other communities have,” she said.
Friends of the ABC have also called on Tassie MPs to invite ABC chairman James Spigelman to visit and outline plasn for local programming.
In the midst of Sunday’s fierce ratings war, Auction Room premiered with just 272,000 viewers.