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WIVT is the ABC-affiliated television station for the Eastern Southern Tier of New York State that is licensed to Binghamton. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 34 from a transmitter south of downtown on Ingraham Hill. Owned by Newport Television, the station is sister to Class A NBC affiliate WBGH-CA and the two share studios on Ingraham Hill Road. However, master control and some traffic responsibilities originate from central-casting facilities at the studios of sister station WSYR-TV on Bridge Street in East Syracuse. Syndicated programming on WIVT includes: Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy!, Access Hollywood, and Judge Judy.

[edit] Digital programming

WIVT
[1]
Binghamton, New York
Branding NewsChannel 34

WETM 18 News NBC 5 (on DT2)

Channels Digital: 34 (UHF)
Subchannels 34.1 ABC

34.2 NBC

Owner Newport Television

(Newport Television License, LLC)

First air date November 9, 1962
Call letters' meaning based on WIXT
Sister station(s) WETM-TV, WBGH-CA, WSYR-TV, WWTI, WHAM-TV, WXXA-TV
Former callsigns WBJA-TV (1962-1978)

WMGC-TV (1978-1998)

Former channel number(s) Analog:

34 (UHF, 1962-2009) Digital: 4 (VHF, 2003-2009)

Transmitter power 345 kW
Height 278 m
Facility ID 11260
Transmitter coordinates 42°3′39.5″N 75°56′36″W / 42.060972°N 75.94333°W / 42.060972; -75.94333
Website newschannel34.com

Its signal is multiplexed.

Digital Channel Programming
34.1 main WIVT programming / ABC HD
34.2 WBGH-CA "NBC 5" HD

[edit] History

Al Anscombe, former General Manager of WKBW-AM-TV in Buffalo, secured a construction permit for Binghamton's third television station in 1956. He named it WBJA-TV after his wife, Beth J. Anscombe. Initially, the station was allocated to UHF analog channel 56. However, not long after Anscombe won the permit, two competing ABC affiliates in Northeastern Pennsylvania (WILK-TV channel 34 in Wilkes-Barre and WARM-TV channel 16 in Scranton) merged to form WNEP-TV. The newly merged station retained WILK-TV's license but used WARM-TV's old UHF channel 16. Seeing a chance to use more signal at less cost, Anscombe sought and won a new construction permit for channel 34. The new station signed-on in November 1962 from studios near its transmitter on Ingraham Hill south of Binghamton. It has always been an ABC affiliate. The Northeastern Pennsylvania-area station now known as WOLF-TV signed-on in 1985 using channel 56.

WBJA was sold in the late-1970s and the call letters were changed to WMGC-TV and adopting the slogan "Magic 34". It dropped the branding by the mid to late 1980s but kept the call letters until the Ackerley Group bought the station in 1997. At that time, it adopted the current calls WIVT. This was where a connection to WIXT (now WSYR) came in as the new call-sign was based on that station in Syracuse. However, a few months later, Ackerley nearly lost its investment. On May 31, 1998, a tornado ripped through WIVT's Ingraham Hill studios and blew down its tower. Cross-town rival CBS affiliate WBNG-TV had live reports that night literally from the WIVT studios. It had a feed restored to cable providers within days but was off-the-air for several months.

Ackerley merged with Clear Channel in 2001. On April 20, 2007, the company entered into an agreement to sell its entire television stations group to Newport Television, a broadcasting group established by Providence Equity Partners. WIVT ceased analog transmission after Midnight on June 12, 2009. Initially, the station continued its digital broadcasts on VHF channel 4 location while new equipment was installed. This equipment had been in use at co-owned CBS affiliate KGPE in Fresno, California for its analog operations and was installed for digital operations on channel 34 in early August. The channel 4 signal, which had been broadcasting since June 16, 2003, was located on a low-band of VHF and vulnerable to impulse noise. WIVT commenced digital operations on channel 34 early in the morning on August 17 and channel 4 went dark on August 18. Since WBGH operates as part of the WIVT twinstick, this station's second digital subchannel now carries WBGH in 720p HD as of February 9, 2010. The official plan is to broadcast that station in high definition in the future with the Federal Communications Commission's roll-out plan for low-power digital stations.

[edit] News operation

[2][3]WETM's weeknight 11 o'clock news open simulcasted on WIVT.For almost forty years, WIVT was more or less a non-factor in the news race in Binghamton. It spent most of its history as the third station in what was essentially a two-station market and reaped virtually no benefit when long-time NBC affiliate WICZ-TV switched to Fox in 1996. Immediately after taking control, the Ackerley Group significantly upgraded WIVT's news operation sharing resources with WIXT's well-respected news department. After the tornado destroyed its newly renovated facilities, the station temporarily relocated to the studios of WSKG-TV in Vestal while WIVT rebuilt its own facilities. [1] However, the upgrades proved unsustainable.

The station closed down its sports department in 2006 at the same time that its full-length 11 o'clock news seen weeknights was reduced to a short five-minute updates. WIVT also began originating its early weeknight broadcasts, including musical performances, from secondary studios in the Oakdale Mall in Johnson City. WIVT's weeknight broadcasts at 5:30 and 6, and the 11 p.m. update, were simulcast on WBGH. This station also aired an hour-long weekday morning show at 6. Its meteorologists provided weather forecasts for WWTI in Watertown.

On June 5, 2009, WIVT and WBGH announced they would be consolidating their news operation with sister station WETM-TV in Elmira effective immediately. [2] Rival WBNG reported that all but two people from the news staff and all production staff for the news operation were terminated.[3] The Press & Sun-Bulletin identified the two as anchor Peter Quinn and News Director Jim Ehmke but also said that fifteen other members of the originally 28 person staff, including non-news personnel, would remain with the stations. [4] WIVT and WBGH continue to be locally operated from their studios and a weekday morning web update continued to be produced there but was eventually dropped. However, the Oakdale Mall studios were closed. WIVT now simulcasts WETM's local broadcasts on weekday mornings (second hour), weekdays at noon, and weeknights at 11. Initially, a 6 o'clock newscast was also included in the arrangement.

WBGH simulcasts WETM every night at 11 and as the early evening news on weekends if it is not pre-empted by sports coverage. The consolidation marks the return of Elmira-based news to the market as WBGH was once a semi-satellite of WETM and aired that station's local newscasts. [5] On June 28, WIVT and WBGH again began to air a 6 o'clock newscast on weeknights focusing on Binghamton. The show is produced by WETM on its news set with a plasma screen moved in similar fashion to the weeknight 10 o'clock show that airs on "WETM 2". This replaced the simulcast of WETM's news at 6. [6]

[edit] Newscast titles

  • First News 34 (1988-1993)
  • 34 Eyewitness News (1993-1998)
  • NewsChannel 34 (1998-present)
  • WETM 18 News (2009-present, during WETM-produced newscasts)

[edit] Station slogans

  • Your News Source for the '90s (1993-1998)
  • Coverage You Can Count On (1998–2009)

[edit] News team

Anchors

  • Sofia Ojeda - weekday mornings
  • Zach Wheeler - weekday mornings
  • Kimberly Davidow - weekdays at noon
  • Peter Quinn - weeknights at 6
  • Jeff Stone - Chief Managing Editor seen weeknights at 11
  • Staci-Lyn Honda - weeknights at 11
  • Steve Vesey - Sports Director seen weeknights at 11
  • Kristin Gold - sports weeknights at 6

Storm Team Meteorologists

  • Joe Pasquarelli (AMS Seal of Approval) - Chief seen weekday mornings and noon
  • Vanessa Richards - weeknights

Reporters

  • Jim Reed - "Law Talk" segment producer
  • Kelsey Newman - "Shape Up" segment producer
  • Melanie Paquin - "Mission Makeover" segment producer
  • Naveen Dhaliwal
  • Nick Natario

[edit] Former staff

Anchors

  • Brooke Richie - weeknights at 6 and 11
  • Jen Maxfield - weeknights at 6 and 11
  • Kristen Miranda - weeknights at 6 and 11
  • Erin Logan - weeknights at 6 and 11
  • Heather Hegedus - weeknights at 6 and 11
  • Steve Craig - weeknights
  • Damon Micalizzi - weekends and weeknights
  • Don Shipman - weekday mornings and producer
  • Colleen Mccoy - weekday mornings and producer
  • Kristin Wright - weekday mornings
  • Jan Carabeo - weekday mornings
  • Bill Cook - weekday mornings
  • Jaclyn Cashman - weekday mornings
  • Jillian Mele - weekday mornings
  • Kathleen Mitts - weekday mornings
  • Raegan Medgie - weekday mornings
    • reporter and producer
  • Jon Alhart - sports
  • Kevin Roache - sports
  • Mike Giardi - sports
  • Demetra Ganias

Meteorologists

  • Steve Prinzivalli - Chief seen weeknights
  • Mark McLean - weeknights
  • Matt Noyes - weeknights
  • Erik Heden - weeknights
  • Doug Harlow - weekday mornings
  • Cheryl Nelson - weekday mornings
  • Melissa Cole - weekday mornings
  • Samantha Hensell
  • Ryan Coyle

Reporters

  • Jan Carabeo - fill-in anchor
  • Andrew Gawinski
  • Grant Loomis
  • Sarah Pihl
  • Brian Foster
  • Kelly McPherson
  • Marisa Brahney

[edit] References

  1. ^ Fybush, Scott (June 18, 1998). "Dame Media is Sold". North East RadioWatch. http://www.bostonradio.org/nerw/nerw-980618.html. Retrieved November 25, 2009.
  2. ^ http://www.newschannel34.com/news/local/story/WIVT-and-WBGH-to-expand-local-news-to-the/d9sJ-CstC0W_ICt5k50Qfw.cspx
  3. ^ http://www.wbng.com/news/local/47047142.html
  4. ^ http://www.pressconnects.com/article/20090606/BUSINESS/906060387/WIVT++Elmira+station+consolidate
  5. ^ http://www.stargazette.com/article/20090606/BUSINESS/906060387/WIVT++Elmira+station+consolidate
  6. ^ http://www.newschannel34.com/news/local/story/NewsChannel34-will-be-returning-June-29th-with/DHi4bmKInEmwWJcpUUXCQw.cspx

[edit] External links

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