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Mayor’s Office Asks Spectrum Not to Change PEG Channels

Public access station Nā Leo TV, on channel 55, has been providing information to the Big Island community for over 24 years.

Spectrum (formerly, Oceanic Time Warner Cable) is considering changing and moving the Public, Educational and Government (PEG) programming station channel numbers throughout the State of Hawai‘i.

Hawai‘i County Mayor Harry Kim and Managing Director Wil Okabe wrote a letter to  Western Division of Charter Communications Senior Director of Government Affairs Laurence “Buzz” Shott, on Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018, saying that the move “is not in the best interest of the citizens of the County of Hawai‘i.”

Re: Opposing Proposed PEG Station Channel Number Changes

It has been brought to our attention that Spectrum in considering changing and moving the Public, Educational and Government (PEG) programming station channel numbers throughout the State. This move is not in the best interest of the citizens of the County of Hawai‘i.

Nā Leo TV, the PEG station that services Hawai‘i Island, has done a great job for the past 24 years. Under new management over the past 3 years. Nā Leo ushered in an emphasis on branding that ensured community access television continues to be an important element in local programming. Their programming is an integral part to civic awareness within our island community.

The Hawai‘i County Council broadcasts for local government, the State Legislature broadcasts for State government, relevant and hyper-local content for general programming, and a new “Civil Defense” channel to help in times of local disaster are just a few examples of why moving the channel numbers would be detrimental to our communities.

We respectfully request that Spectrum not move any of the PEG access channel numbers for the Island of Hawai‘i (Nā Leo TV) and suggest that you also don’t move any numbers fo the other islands (‘Ōlelo, Akakū, and Hō‘ike).

Should you need any further insights or have any questions regarding our support of keeping Channels 53, 54 and 55 reserved for local community access on Hawaii Island, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Sincerely,

Wil Okabe, Managing Director and Mayor Harry Kim

Na Leo ‘O Hawaii Public Access Television President on Bad Legislation

Another bad legislative bill going before committee today has come to my attention. HB2654 talks about improving broadband infrastructure in Hawaii, which is good, but also moves cable regulation to DBEDT from DCCA which is BAD for oversight. DBEDT is a ‘resource center’ whereas DCCA is in charge of ‘protecting the community from unfair and deceptive business practices.’

Also nothing in HB2654 to continue funding Community Access Television, BAD.

There are aspects of the bill which are good, hey, who wouldn’t like better broadband internet access? But other portions need to be rewritten to better serve the public.

At this time I urge those of you on the committee hearing the bill today to vote ‘NO’ on HB2654 and for other representatives to oppose it should the bill move forward as written.

Mahalo Nui Loa,

Baron Sekiya

President, Na Leo ‘O Hawai‘i Public Access Television