Newport TV stations cut Verizon over retrans impasse


Newport Television-owned stations in Syracuse, Harrisburg, and Albany have been pulled from Verizon FiOS as the company was unable to reach a new retrans agreement with the cable provider before the 1/13 midnight deadline. FiOS customers are currently unable to see Newport’s WSYR (ABC) in Syracuse, NY; WXXA (FOX) in Albany, NY and WHP (CBS) in Harrisburg, PA.

“I put an offer on the table last Friday to Verizon and I haven’t heard anything back from them,” Michael DiPasquale, VP/general counsel of Newport told The Syracuse Post-Standard. “That offer is an offer that no one else in the Syracuse market found objectionable. At the end of the day, we have a deal with every single cable and satellite operator in the Syracuse market except Verizon. So you can read into that what you want.”

Verizon says it received no such offer.

“For the record, we did not receive an offer from Newport on Friday,” said John Bonomo, a regional director of media relations with Verizon told the paper. “And since we do not want to negotiate this in the press, we will stick with our … statement.”

That statement is: “Verizon has reached agreements with all other broadcasters in Syracuse, and Verizon has repeatedly offered Newport fair fees consistent with the marketplace, but so far Newport has refused our offers. Verizon remains available and open to negotiate with Newport.”