WQPT and WTVP Enter into New Partnership; WTVP to Host WQPT Master Control Operations
August 8, 2014
MOLINE/PEORIA, IL — Public Television broadcasting in the Quad Cities has come home to Illinois. On June 30 at 7:01 p.m., WQPT-Quad Cities PBS officially moved control of its technical broadcast operations to WTVP-Public Television for Central Illinois in Peoria.
According to WTVP President and CEO Chet Tomczyk, this new arrangement represents months of behind-the-scenes work on infrastructure, equipment and technology by both stations.
"This transition has gone smoothly, and viewers in the Quad Cities won't know anything has changed," noted WQPT General Manager Mary Pruess. "This new broadcasting arrangement is a positive step forward for both stations and provides WQPT with stellar signal quality. Each station's programming, governance and community services continue as before."
Pruess added that master control operations for WQPT, a media service of Western Illinois University, have long been outsourced; however, instead of coming from Texas, WQPT's signal will originate in Peoria and be sent via fiber to the WQPT transmitter in Orion.
"This change provides financial savings for WQPT, a new source of revenue for WTVP, valuable technological advances for both stations and an invaluable chance for the sister stations to work together," Tomczyk added.
"Western Illinois University has a long standing tradition of serving residents and students in our region. As the public broadcasting service of the University, WQPT in partnership with WTVP have established the beginnings of a win-win relationship with even more future opportunities for collaboration that will benefit our viewing audiences from Peoria, Macomb, Moline and beyond," said Joe Rives, vice president for the Quad Cities and planning at WIU. "Both Mary Pruess and Chet Tomczyk deserve our thanks for their outstanding leadership in this important project."
The project was led by WTVP Chief Engineer Bill Porter and his team, including engineers James Jordan and Brett Ring, Operations Manager Jackie Luebcke, IT Director Mark Lasswell, with Traffic Manager Jed Klabunde and operators Paul Coussens and Will Crotz, along with WQPT Traffic Coordinator Richard Diamond and Program Manager Jerry Myers.
"This collaboration between stations represents another way of being responsible stewards of the public trust placed in us by our members and contributors," Tomczyk said.