Sinclair, ABC Still Negotiating Affiliate Agreements

ABC and Sinclair Broadcast Group have extended the affiliate agreements covering Sinclair's nine owned or operated ABC outlets until February 28. The two parties continue to negotiate the terms of the agreements, which were set to expire December 31, 2009, and had already been extended a month.

ABC has been pushing its affiliates to share programming costs as part of their agreements with the networks. Some have deemed the costs to be reasonable, while others have chafed. WPGA Macon, Ga., for one, split with ABC at the end of 2009 over retransmission consent payments.

"We certainly don't have the wherewithal to pay the fees they're demanding," WPGA President Lowell Register told B&C.

Sinclair reports fourth quarter earnings Feb. 17.

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.