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Raycom, Scripps Take Next Step in West Palm Relationship

A few months after Scripps outlet WPTV West Palm Beach began producing news for Raycom's WFLX, the two have announced a shared services agreement. "Raycom has contracted with Scripps to provide services involving technical, promotional and online operations and certain local programming for WFLX under Raycom's direction as licensee," says Scripps in a statement. "Raycom will continue to program the station and conduct all advertising sales."

Scripps says WPTV will invest in additional equipment and facility improvements, and hire additional employees, which may include current WFLX employees.

The parties did not specify what sort of layoffs would result from the arrangement. A Scripps representative said no cuts would take place on the WPTV side, while calls to WFLX and to Raycom were not returned.

Starting around June 1, the WFLX business division will lease space at WPTV.

WPTV is an NBC affiliate and WFLX is a Fox. WPTV produces 17 hours of news each week for WFLX.

"This is a mutually beneficial arrangement because the enhanced relationship allows WFLX to operate more efficiently while giving WPTV the opportunity to generate more revenue from its staff and infrastructure," said Brian Lawlor, senior vice president of television for Scripps. "We're excited to work with Raycom in a way that makes both stations stronger and preserves the options enjoyed by the market's viewers and advertisers."

Added Raycom President and CEO Paul McTear: "By sharing back-office and other expenses with WPTV, we will be able to use our resources to increase the diversity of our news and local programming and continue to serve West Palm with the high-quality local and national programming that our community deserves."