The owner of the Oregon ABC affiliate, Heartland Media, says it fears the satellite service will drop the station on Thursday since negotiations for a new carriage contract have been unsuccessful.
Heartland Media, owner of ABC affiliate KEZI Eugene, Or. (DMA 121), announced today that KEZI’s current contract with Dish Network expires at midnight on Aug. 20.
Heartland officials said they have attempted to reach a new long-term agreement with Dish Network since it acquired KEZI from Chambers Communications on July 15. However, Heartland says, “Dish Network has rejected proposals that would have allowed KEZI-TV to remain on the satellite service.”
As a result, Heartland Media said it expects Dish to discontinue carriage of KEZI effective Aug. 21.
“KEZI,” said Heartland, “has successfully reached agreements with every other major cable, satellite and telecommunications company in its operating market, except for DISH Network — all of which have recognized the fair market value of the programming and content that KEZI provides every day to their viewers.”
Mike Boring, KEZI VP-GM, said: “Content from local broadcast stations is the most watched programming on satellite and cable services. We are simply asking Dish Network to recognize the value of KEZI and come to an agreement like every other programming provider has done. We are continuing to negotiate with Dish Network, and are hopeful there will be no interruption of service for our viewers who subscribe to Dish.”
In the event DISH Network does not agree to carry KEZI, the station said viewers can continue to receive their local news and top-rated programming by watching KEZI over-the-air by antenna, or by switching to a local cable or satellite provider such as Comcast, Charter, DirecTV, Comspan Communications (Roseburg), Country Vision Cable (Junction City), Roome Telecommunications (Halsey), Alsea River Cable (Waldport) or Monroe Area Communications (Monroe).