WCMZ-TV‚ the Flint, Michigan satellite of PBS affiliate WCMU-TV, will be signing off at the end of the FCC’s broadcast spectrum auction.
Central Michigan University, which owns the station, said Wednesday it is selling the station’s spectrum for $14 million, given that 99% of Flint viewers have access to other PBS stations. The school bought the station from the University of Michigan for $1 million in 2009.
“This was a difficult decision,” said president George Ross. “Two facts, however, greatly influenced our conversation. First, nearly all viewers will continue to have access to PBS through other sources. If that weren’t the case, we wouldn’t have participated in the auction.
“Second, our students are our core mission. Our mandate,” he said. “We must focus our resources on their success. This decision was made to benefit Michigan families, including those in Flint.”
The university will continue operating four other public stations throughout Michigan, as well as its radio stations. Trustees have not yet decided how the money from the sale will be used.
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