FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Analog Shut-Off Update from WTVP
On February 11, President Obama signed into law the DTV
Transition Deadline Bill, moving the nation’s official analog
broadcasting shut-off date to June 12, 2009. However, WTVP will
retire its analog broadcast signal at 11:59 p.m. on February 17,
2009, as originally mandated by the Digital Television and
Public Safety Act of 2005. WTVP’s programming will continue
unabated on digital channels 47.1, 47.2 and 47.3.
Now considered "early termination," WTVP is allowed to shut off
the analog transmitter on February 17 because of documents filed
with the Federal Communications Commission on January 21, 2009.
WTVP is one of 368 stations nationwide—and one of four in the
Peoria market— approved for early termination.
The decision to terminate the analog signal as previously
scheduled by Congress was mandated purely by economics. It would
cost WTVP approximately $40,000 extra in power costs alone to
continue running the analog broadcast signal alongside the
required digital broadcast. That amount does not include
engineering or maintenance costs to failing equipment.
"We do not have that kind of money available," said WTVP
President & CEO Chet Tomczyk. "The Board and staff feel that it
would be irresponsible to put the station into that kind of
financial hole in such troubling times, especially when such a
decision could jeopardize our ability to provide public
television services of any kind in the future."
As of 12 a.m. on Wednesday, February 18th, viewers should look
exclusively to Digital Channel 47.1 for regular WTVP
programming—now broadcast entirely in High Definition. WTVP’s
PBS World service—the best in news, discovery and public affairs
programming—will continue on Digital Channel 47.2. And WTVP
Create—the best in how-to, lifestyle and adventure
programming—will continue on Digital Channel 47.3. Viewers are
encouraged to check with their cable or satellite providers for
their channel designations.
WTVP is hosting a viewer helpline from 8 a.m. through the
evening hours on Wednesday, February 18. We will make every
attempt to answer general and specific questions, and will be
able to refer callers to a number of further resources. We’d
like to get all of our viewers through this change as smoothly
The best immediate options to get digital-ready include buying a
digital-ready television set or purchasing a digital converter
box without the benefit of the government-issue coupons. A new
round of coupons has been promised, but there has been no
indication of availability timelines yet, WTVP will keep the
public updated through our airwaves and on WTVP.ORG as more
information becomes available.
View WTVP's FCC filing
for "Notification of Suspension of Operations"
filed on 2/05/2009
For further information contact Chet Tomczyk, WTVP President &
CEO (309) 677-4747
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