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TMCNet:  FiOS will be able to carry WTVR

[January 01, 2013]

FiOS will be able to carry WTVR

Jan 01, 2013 (Richmond Times-Dispatch - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) -- Verizon FiOS and WTVR, the local Channel 6 affiliate of CBS, reached a tentative agreement late Monday evening over retransmission fees that will keep local programming on the air for subscribers in the Richmond area.

Verizon's contract to carry WTVR on its FiOS fiber-optic network was set to expire Monday at midnight.

By law, Verizon FiOS cannot carry WTVR on its system without a contract.

The deal also affects WTKR in Norfolk, which, like WTVR, is owned by Local TV LLC, the Newport, Ky.-based company that owns 21 TV stations in 16 U.S. markets.

"Verizon and Local TV have reached an agreement that is both reasonable and in our FiOS TV customers' best interests," Verizon spokesman Harry J. Mitchell said. "This means that there is no risk of losing any local TV channels, including WTVR-TV, at this time." WTVR station manager Stephen Hayes said the tentative deal means so disruption in service. "We are extremely pleased a resolution was reached prior to the deadline," he said.

WTVR said on its website earlier on Monday that it had already reached agreements with other major providers including Comcast, DirecTV and Dish Network.

Many TV station owners this year have been battling cable providers and satellite TV broadcasters to increase the fees it charges to transmit their local broadcast TV signals over cable and satellite.

For instance, Sinclair Broadcast Group Inc. and Dish Network reached an agreement in August that allows the satellite television provider to carry Sinclair's broadcast stations, including WRLH-Channel 35 in Richmond.

Richmond-based Media General Inc. is negotiating deals with Time Warner and affiliates in eight cities, including its three largest -- Tampa, Fla.; Raleigh, N.C.; and Columbus, Ohio. Those contracts also were set to expire at midnight Monday.

chazard@timesdispatch.com (804) 775-8023 ___ (c)2013 the Richmond Times-Dispatch (Richmond, Va.) Visit the Richmond Times-Dispatch (Richmond, Va.) at www.timesdispatch.com Distributed by MCT Information Services

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