DirectTV and Cowles have reached an impasse in their retransmission consent negotiations, resulting on DirecTV dropping Cowles’ NBC affiliate KHQ Spokane and its satellites serviving Yahima and Richland and four Montana stations — NBC affiliate KULR Billings, ABC affiliate KWYB Butte, ABC affiliate KFBB Great Falls and ABC affiilate KTMF Missoula, according to the stations’ websites. Their last retrans agreement expired in June.
Kalee Scolatt, the 34-year-old news director of Cowles Publishing-owned ABC affiliate KTMF Missoula, Mont., was one of two people murdered Wednesday by a man who then killed himself.
The stations, all in Montana, are KULR Billings; KTMF Missoula and Kalispell; KWYB Butte and Bozeman; KFBB Great Falls and KHBB Helena.
The Max Media ABC affiliate in Montana is preparing to launch a half-hour newscast with “heavy local news,” according to station president Linda Gray.