Thursday, February 14, 2008

Dear Fellow Citizens:

The Board of Scranton Today is surprised and, certainly, disappointed with the recent decision by the City of Scranton not to continue its services as operator of the City’s public, educational, and government cable-access channels. But, Scranton Today accepts this decision, commits itself to continuing its mission to help foster “a more informed electorate and engaged citizenry,” and pledges to do all that it can to insure a smooth transition as we move forward. To do less would be a violation of the public trust Scranton Today has so careful tried to develop and maintain.

The Board of Scranton Today wishes to thank its founders, Scranton Tomorrow and The Scranton Public Library, whose vision, administrative expertise, and generous financial support helped to successfully launch the station’s efforts. The monies, they invested and helped raise, allowed Scranton Today to open-up government meetings in an unparalleled fashion and to permit citizens to use the medium of television to engage the community around common interests and concerns. The Board of Scranton Today is proud of these past nine years of service to the citizens of our community.

While some may identify Scranton Today solely with municipal and other governmental meetings, in fact, this has represented only 28% of the station’s programming. Over the years, literally thousands of hours of air-time have been devoted to public and educational programs rich in their diversity and richer, still, in the vital portrayal they have given of life in Scranton and Lackawanna County. A comprehensive outline of these many programs can be found in Appendix B. of Scranton Today’s proposal to manage Scranton’s public, educational, and government cable-access channels available on the Scranton Today website,

Scranton Today wishes, also, to thank the many organizations that have generously supported its mission, chiefly the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the City of Scranton, the Scranton School District, and the County of Lackawanna. They have demonstrated their commitment to open government by providing access to their meetings, and have backed up this commitment with both their encouragement and their financial support.

As important as this has been to the station’s development, nothing has been more gratifying to the Board of Scranton Today than the support provided by the very citizens it has endeavored to serve. Whether in response to direct appeal or by participating in one of the Scranton Today fundraisers, you have made this station yours through your contributions. This past year, the first year of independent operation, Scranton Today raised $100,000, 42% of this from non-governmental sources. Even if Scranton Today had had access to some portion of the franchise fee, maintaining this level of community “buy in” and “public ownership” would have continued to be important to its success.

As we continue cable casting our scheduled programs, we invite our many supporters to share with us their ideas on how Scranton Today can continue to meet the mission crafted for it by the community over ten years ago. These suggestions can be emailed to us at or mailed to us at Scranton Today, 500 Vine Street, Scranton, PA 18508.

Under such circumstances as these, thank-you always seems so inadequate. Therefore, the Board of Scranton Today both expresses its gratitude and offers this pledge. We will do everything possible to honor your trust and to vigorously move forward to develop new and creative ways to fulfill the mission you have given us.

Stay tuned, as it were, and, together, we will write a new script and begin the next production in our season.

The Board of Scranton Today

1 comment:

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