Saturday, January 31, 2015

And that's the way it is

Farewell, NJN

And that's the way it is

New York’s new New Jersey TV network goes on the air Friday, ending 40 years of homegrown public broadcasting in the Garden State.

The N.J. Senate fell one vote short Monday in its last-ditch bid to block Gov. Chris Christie’s scheme to “privatize” (aka, dismantle) NJN’s statewide system of TV and radio stations, which he has long characterized as a Kremlin-style arrangement.

The famously Jersey-centric governor's administration dismissed Montclair State University’s credible proposal to run NJN, pushing instead for Manhattan-based WNET do so.

Better known as Channel 13, this respected broadcaster will operate the new “NJTV” through a state-incorporated subsidiary that must provide 20 hours of Jersey-fresh programming weekly.

Much of that will be produced by a company owned by Steve Abudato Jr., a familiar face on NJN as well as WNET.

Adubato’s even more famous father, “Big Steve,” is someone whom reporters on, say, NJN typically call a “Democratic power broker.”

He’s also an ally of Christie.

To quote the state’s latest tourism slogan, “Now That’s New Jersey.”

Kevin Riordan Inquirer Columnist
About this blog
Blinq is a news commentary blog featuring contributions from Inquirer Metro columnists Kevin Riordan and Daniel Rubin.

Kevin Riordan Inquirer Columnist
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