Though reported earlier, the deal was officially announced today. The University of Central Florida said in a news release that WUCF TV will become the main channel on WBCC-Channel 68.1 and begin airing PBS programming the day WMFE adopts its new religious programming format.
“In April, when WMFE-TV announced its affiliation with PBS would end as of June 30, we at UCF knew that Central Florida stood to lose a treasured community resource,” UCF President John Hitt said. “However, as America’s leading partnership university, we also know that great turnarounds can happen for the common good through the power of partnerships. I look forward to July 1 and enjoying some of my favorite shows on the new WUCF TV.”
WBCC-TV, named after Brevard Community College, has been programming Channel 68 since October 1991 and started carring PBS shows as a secondary affiliate in 2002. (Side note: The college station was originally WRES-Channel 18, when it went on the air in 1988. But in 1991 it executed a deal with then-independent — now CW affiliate — WKCF to swap channel positions. But I digress …) UCF has been airing its community programming, dubbed UCF TV, on WBCC’s digital subchannel 68.2. Part of the new arrangement will have WUCF’s main PBS programming on 68.1, with WBCC’s programming and UCF TV sliding to subchannels 68.2 and 68.3.
Still not totally clear to me: will WUCF be the official call letters of record for Channel 68, or does it retain WBCC?
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