Company has not had news since 2003
UTICA, April 16, 2010 -- While celebrating his station's 40th anniversary on Thursday, WUTR Executive Vice President and Program Manager Steve Merren said the station will bring back its newscast in the next 18 months.
"It's our goal to get news back on our channel," Merren said. "I don't know if it'll happen this year, but in the next 12-to-18 months we will have a newscast. I think it's important that the community has another source of news. We have one newspaper and one news station and the community could benefit from another voice."
WUTR had been a staple in local news, but stopped broadcasting news in 2003. Since then, it has hosted a variety of local programming, but has yet to be able to provide a newscast. Merren said they're working on a deal that would bring the news back to the ABC station.
Merren vocalized his goals at the station's 40th anniversary party, which took place at the Stanly Theatre. Public officials, station personalities and members of the viewing public attended the celebration. There was Saranac, food and music for the duration of the two-hour gala.
Assemblywoman RoAnn Destito (D-Utica, Rome) spoke about the station's history when delivering a commendation to the station.
"You have dedicated people in the community you have served, but you have also provided internships and helped in many ways to become a part of the community," she said.
Guest were not charged to attend the event, which had camera's rolling throughout. Marren said it was meant as a reunion of sorts, as well as a token of appreciation.
"It's really a celebration of the wonderful people that have dedicated their time and their lives to this community," he's said. "We've gotten a lot of support. Some of it was from the people that used to work here, some was from our sponsors, but most of it was from the viewers -- who are the whole reason we are here."