The value of music and the rate radio in Canada should pay for it have been among the hot topics at Canadian Music Week in Toronto.

"It is allegedly 2008 and we're still discussing whether radio gathers value from music," says David Basskin, president of the Canadian Musical Reproduction Rights Agency, which represents a vast majority of music copyright holders in the country. "Is it too much to admit that value is being created by both sides?"

During a March 7 panel discussion on Broadcasting & Webcasting Royalties Basskin had argued that all involved -- broadcasters, copyright holders and record companies -- should be able to work together to find a mutually beneficial solution for the issue of royalty rates involving radio stations.

The Canadian Association of Broadcasters (CAB), which represents the country's radio stations, has warned that if performing royalties currently in front of Canada's Copyright Board are approved, the total burden from all royalties could soar to 17% of the industry's annual revenue.

Currently music radio stations pay total royalties of 8% of revenue or about $100 million, including 4% to the Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada, 0.8% for broadcast mechanical rights, and 3% for neighboring rights.

Alan Cross, program director of Toronto modern rock station The Edge, had a heated exchange with Basskin and said there is a chance radio stations could stop playing music altogether if royalty rates continue to rise.

"There has to be some give and take here -- and all they want is to take," Cross says. "You can't keep coming to the industry more and more and not expect it to suffer."

March 7 also saw the CAB's Canadian Radio Music Awards handed out. Alt-rock/pop band State of Shock's track "Money Honey" (Cordova Bay) gave the act the best new group or solo artist award in both the CHR and rock categories. Pop/R&B vocalist Elise Estrada won the same award in the (dance/urban/rhythmic) category with "Insatiable" (RockStar/Koch) while Faber Drive's "Second Chance" (604/Universal) won it the best new group award in the Hot AC category.

Other best new artist awards went to singer/songwriter Hayley Sales in the mainstream/AC category for "What You Want" (Universal), while Jessie Farrell's "Let's Talk About Love" (604/Universal) collected the country award.

Additional awards went to Wind-Up's hard rock act Finger Eleven (fans' choice) and Geffen's Nelly Furtado (chart topper). Alex J. Robinson captured the FACTOR breakthrough award for top airplay for a new artist supported by the Foundation to Assist Canadian Talent on Records.

Alanis Morissette received a Lifetime Achievement Award at the awards ceremony. Morissette (33), is also being inducted into the Canadian Music Industry Hall of Fame this year.