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County commission meetings will air live on TV, website

Upgrade came after years of negotiations with Charter
By Jack Heffernan

The Daily Astorian

Published on October 23, 2017 7:43PM

Last changed on October 24, 2017 8:45AM

The Clatsop County Board of Commissioners meeting will be broadcast live Wednesday night.

Charter Communications recently installed the infrastructure for broadcasting, ending a six-year process. Viewers can access the meeting on public access channel 190 and on the county website.

Commissioners approved a $90,000 contract in 2016 to upgrade audio and install video capabilities in the Judge Guy Boyington Building in Astoria, where commissioners meet. Video cameras, a projector and retractable screen, audio improvements and other upgrades had already been added to the building. Delayed video footage of meetings has been posted on the county website and YouTube since last year.

Charter originally planned to install the cable infrastructure in December. But the company was anticipating that the broadcasts would take place at the county’s nearby office building on 800 Exchange St., which already has cable capabilities, Clatsop County Manager Cameron Moore said. Installation of other infrastructure also added to the delay.

County officials had already reached a franchise agreement with Charter in 2015 following several years of negotiations. Charter paid $39,000 to cover the cost of the channel as part of the agreement.

The county is in the early stages of developing policies for the types of programming that will be allowed on the channel, Moore said.

“It’s not something we’ve done before. We want to do it carefully,” he said. “We just need to be clear and consistent.”

Commissioner Lianne Thompson has proposed allowing organizations such as the American Red Cross, Clatsop Community College, Clatsop County Public Health and a number of environmental organizations to broadcast on the channel.

“I want people to be able to see what’s going on,” Thompson said. “I want members of the community to have this tool.”

While county staff tested the equipment last week, Moore still expects early glitches.

“It will probably take a week or two before we have things running the way we want them to,” he said.


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