Waco satellite viewers may be without KWBU for two years

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DISH Network viewers of KWBU in Waco, Texas, may be without their local pubTV station for up to two years, reports the Waco Tribune. Interim station g.m. Clare Paul said problems began when a retransmission notification from DISH was mistakenly sent to KWBU’s previous CEO, who left the station in August. Paul said she tried to contact DISH but did not hear back until New Year’s Eve 2008, when the staff was away. The next day, area DISH subscribers had no KWBU. “We have contacted our attorney in Washington, D.C., and he’s contacted their attorney, Paul said. Right now, it’s legal talking to legal. We are very frustrated.” In December 2007, APTS reached an agreement with DIRECTTV for local digital carriage. DISH was not in that agreement. Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) has introduced legislation requiring satellite carriage of public television stations’ complete digital signals where no carriage agreement between the satellite provider and the local station has previously been reached. Meanwhile, Waco viewers still receive the PBS station KNCT in Belton, which covers their area.