CAR25 could go back on air, funds would come from contingency fund and other budgets
— Restoration of Racine’s public-access channel is set to go to
the City Council for a vote on Tuesday, though the cost is higher
than the initial $30,000 estimate.
week, the Finance and Personnel Committee voted to send to the City
Council, with a recommendation of approval, an amended proposal for
purchasing equipment and budgeting the manpower needed to get
BelleTV, also known as CAR25, back on the air.
BelleTV/CAR25 first went dark in early December, the estimated cost
for replacement equipment alone was $30,000, which is the amount
Alderman Sandy Weidner of the 6th District had included in her
request to get the channel up and running again.
request went before the Committee of the Whole, a subcommittee of the
full City Council, which after a long discussion decided to send it
to Finance and Personnel. The decision granted city staff more time
to find answers to questions raised by the aldermen and put together
a proposal that addressed concerns about the channel’s longevity.
budgeted amount presented at last Monday’s meeting was $145,666.29.
City Administrator Jim Palenick said the first estimate was “off
the cuff,” whereas the new estimate was based on further research
about what would be the best investment.
few members of the public, as well as Weidner, expressed concern that
the increased price tag for the equipment, which includes 4K
technology, was going to deter aldermen from passing the resolution.
don’t need that; we just need a channel that operates,” said
Director Paul Ancona said that the intention was to recommend the
best equipment so it could have a prolonged lifespan.
we’re looking at in terms of the equipment is going to
state-of-the-art equipment so that we’re not facing this again in a
few years,” Ancona said.
proposal included budgeted items that could be reallocated for CAR25:
from the contingency fund. Assistant Finance Director Kathleen
Fischer told the committee that around $100,000 would remain in the
budgeted for the MIS department to replace switches. Ancona stated
said his department would still be able to replace the oldest
switches, they would just put off replacing some of them until 2021.
budgeted for additional body camera data storage.
for wireless access points for community centers.
emphasized that they chose line items that are “the lowest priority
of the things that made it into the budget,” and could be delayed
members of the committee were receptive to reviving CAR25, and not
just because several members of the public and aldermen attended the
meeting to advocate for it.
obviously in support of trying to bring the service back, and I
promise it’s not just because my grandma called me and threatened
me,” said Alderman Jason Meekma of the 14th District. “It’s a
powerful influencer nonetheless.”
asked Ancona if the staff budgeted to operate the channel would also
be charged with enhancing the its programming, to which Ancona said
yes. One point that has been raised in the discussion has been the
decrease in programming for the channel, which used to air the Fourth
Fest parade, the Holiday Parade through Downtown and the Racine
Rotary Post Prom.
committee decided to remove one line item — an upgrade of Sony
cameras in the council chambers to 4K video, valued at $29,975—
after learning that the new cameras were not a necessity for the new
system and that the city had installed new cameras two years ago.
Ancona stated that that particular expense could be undertaken
further down the road.
estimated cost going before the City Council would be $115,691.29. As
of press time it was unknown how that change would affect the
proposed reallocation of funds from the budget.
next City Council meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. Tuesday at City
Hall, 730 Washington Ave., Room 205.
Pale-dick lies for Butterball. Lying pigs run the city. Where's the $800,000 the city receives annually to run Belle TV? Did Butterball waste it hiring more swine assistants? I wonder who wipes his ass for him. Probably Pale-dick . . .
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