Spectrum fee idea nixed
Washington–Broadcasters can breathe a sigh of relief on the issue of analog spectrum fees. Earlier this month, President Bush proposed in his fiscal year 2002 budget that commercial TV stations start paying $200 million in annual spectrum fees until they return their analog channels to the government.
But the House Budget Committee passed a budget bill last week that does not include the fees. Nor does it include the president’s recommendation that the government delay its planned auctions of analog TV spectrum for channels 52 to 59 and 60 to 69.
Tag team: WWF, WCW
Los Angeles-The World Wrestling Federation has officially entered an agreement with Turner to purchase top rival World Championship Wrestling. Under the agreement, the WWF will now own the name “WCW,” the tape library and the contracts of a number of wrestlers. WCW has been pulled from TBS and TNT but may find a home on TNN.
Oprah fills Oxygen’s tank
New York–Oxygen, the fledgling cable network for women, will begin airing reruns of “The Oprah Winfrey Show” starting in third quarter 2002, according to Crain’s New York Business. Oxygen confirmed the story, the publication reported.
UPN courts `Girls’
Los Angeles–UPN is said be one of the front-runners in the negotiations for “Single Girls” from Stone Stanley Entertainment. While not directly identifying the series, Tom Nunan, UPN’s entertainment president, loosely described a series in which four or five women are pitted against each other in the quest for Mr. Right. A spokesman for Stone Stanley declined comment on any potential negotiations with UPN.saying the network landed the rights to run the thousands of episodes of the popular talk show when Ms. Winfrey took a stake in the cable network and Web site nearly two years ago%%