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2/21/2013 2:07:00 PM Email this articlePrint this article 
Local TV districts merge into one

Bonnie Colpitts

NCW - Methow Valley, Brewster and Pateros TV District patrons are benefiting from the conversion to digital TV signals, which was completed in the spring of 2012 resulting in a clearer, better defined picture.

The conversion required patrons with older television sets to purchase a converter box, while those patrons with newer televisions could receive the signal directly through an antenna.

Starting in January, the merger of the former TV District No. 2 and TV District No. 3 in the Brewster and Pateros area resulted in a more efficient board, with five directors representing both former districts, one secretary and two technicians. The new district is now called Methow Valley Communications District.

In addition to the improved picture quality, the conversion to digital TV also provides more program viewing choices. The primary network channels (ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS and Fox) are supplemented by an array of additional channels featuring sports, health, documentaries, art, crafts, cooking, movies and vintage programs. The result is that patrons of the TV district may choose from as many as 11 program options.

"That is quite a bargain since the fee is only $20 per year," said Board Chairman Sue Roberts.

The Methow Valley Communications District is a special taxing district of Okanogan County and a service providing agency. The district does not receive property taxes to support its services. The Okanogan County Treasurer's Office sends out an annual fee reminder of $20 to each patron; the money collected is placed into a special investment account through the Okanogan County Treasurer's Office and used to pay for maintenance and operation of our facilities. The district also has to deal with emergencies such as the fire, which damaged facilities on Goat Mountain in September.

If you receive a TV District billing and no longer use the service or have sold your property, please contact the district secretary to have your name removed from the list. If you use the service but do not receive a billing from Okanogan County, please contact the district secretary to be added to the list.

Patrons in different locations receive their signals with different channel numbers. There is information about how to set up your television to receive the signals on the district website. To customize your reception, contact one of the technicians, who will help you to receive service. In the upper Methow Valley, call Paul Brown at (509) 996-3211 and in the Brewster- Pateros area, call Sandy Sanderson at (509) 923-2587. For the lower Methow area, contact either Paul or Sandy.

You may also contact Secretary Lauri McClure at (509) 322-8569 if you have questions, or visit www.methowcommunications.org for information.

Five directors appointed by the Okanogan County Commissioners volunteer their time to serve the Methow Valley Communications District. They meet the second Monday of the month at 1 p.m. at the Twisp City Hall; the meetings are open to the public. The directors are:

Sue Roberts, Chairman, (509) 322-0036

Ken Westman, Director, (509) 996-3189

Bill Tackman, Director, (509) 9963409

Bonnie Colpitts, Director, (509) 689-2728

Janet Varrelman, Director, (509) 923-2884



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