The City Council tonight is scheduled to approve a lease with the non-profit that runs the city’s cable access programming to move the operation into the city-owned municipal service center.

The move would save the Evanston Community Media Center, also known as Evanston Community Television, about $94,000 a year in rent as well as utility costs.

The center has had its subsidy from the city cut in recent years, from $348,000 in 2009 to $172,000 this year.

It also receives about $100,000 a year in equipment funding from Comcast and AT&T, according to a city staff memo describing the proposed agreement.

In addition, the center receives much smaller amounts from membership dues and fundraising and a payment from School District 65 for managing its cable channel.

The new space in the municipal service center at 2020 Asbury Ave. would be considerably smaller than the media center’s current rented space at 1285 Hartrey Ave. and includes only one studio rather than two.

But the agreement would allow the center to continue operation as it struggles to find a new funding model.

The center manages operation of the city’s government access cable channel 16, District 65’s channel 19 and the public access channel 6.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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1 Comment

  1. We’ll be sad to see them leave west Evanston…

    If approved, we'll be sad to see them leave west Evanston, but we understand the financial woes. Glad they're not considering shutting down operations all together!

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