To Our Viewers in Lawrence County:
As of May 25th, 2017, Comcast will discontinue carriage of WKBN-TV in Lawrence County. Due to confidentiality provisions of our agreement with Comcast, we cannot provide much additional information, but we can assure viewers that there is a retransmission consent agreement in place, which allows Comcast to carry WKBN-TV. The decision to stop the carriage is solely at Comcast’s discretion.
While we are not privy to Comcast’s decision-making process, we believe it is, at least partially, a function of the Nielsen Company’s assignment of Lawrence County to the Pittsburgh, PA Designated Market Area (DMA). Because Nielsen has assigned Lawrence County to Pittsburgh, Comcast is obligated to carry KDKA (CBS), while its carriage of WKBN-TV is optional. In the event that Comcast notifies us that it would like to resume carrying WKBN-TV, the carriage would be governed by our existing agreement, without a need for negotiations.
Comcast’s decision to stop carriage of WKBN-TV notwithstanding, the station and its parent company, Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc.’s commitment to continue providing exemplary service to the residents of Lawrence County remains unchanged.
WKBN-TV is still available to many residents, at no charge, through its over-the-air broadcast signal. News and sports stories, along with weather forecasts are also available, at all times, on WKBN-TV’s website: www.wkbn.com. Additionally, the Federal Communications Commission has a procedure in place that allows communities in Lawrence County to petition the FCC to have out-of-market stations, like WKBN-TV, treated as in-market stations when it comes to satellite services like DirecTV and DISH, if they have the capacity to make WKBN-TV’s signal available.
Regardless of Comcast’s decision, WKBN-TV remains committed to serving our viewers in Lawrence County. If you disagree with Comcast’s decision, we urge you to contact them at 1-800-266-2278.