Fight in Washington with cable companies could impact WPDE, other news stations

A debate playing out in Washington between cable companies and broadcasters could affect the way people watch TV stations like WPDE.

The fight is over money and the cost cable companies are charged for the transmission of their content.

Cable providers have to pay over the air broadcasters for the right to deliver their content to paid TV customers. And an alliance of cable companies say broadcasters are asking for higher re-transmission rates, which means higher bills for customers.

But broadcasters argue that cable companies already pay for every network they carry, and those other networks come at much higher rates than the one charged by broadcasters.

Dennis Wharton of the National Association of Broadcasters and others in the broadcasting alliance argue that the fees broadcasters charge sustain local content and make it possible for stations to provide free broadcast services to the community.

"The money that local broadcasters get from retransmission is really invested in local tv...its tornado and hurricane coverage," said Wharton.

This battle could be decided soon in Congress as key legislation awaits passage.

To learn more about the "Keep Free TV" campaign visit