State Representative Paul Donato, Mayor Michael McGlynn, Medford Voc-Tech Director Heidi Riccio, School Committee member Ann Marie Cugno, School Superintendent Roy Belson, and City Solicitor Mark Rumley in the classroom that will be transformed into a new studio.
Today Mayor Michael J. McGlynn announced the new public & educational access station will be located at the Medford Vocational Technical High School.
“We are proud to begin the process of setting up public/educational access here at the Vocational School. This room will function as the studio and the room to the left will function as the green room,” said the Mayor.
Heidi Riccio, Director of the Vocational School, along with the Mayor, Mark Rumley and others, toured similar sites at other schools districts this past summer so they could understand what would work best for the studio set up.
“I have handed out copies of the Draft of the Proposed Studio Renovation”, said Director Riccio. “Please note this is a Draft, but provides information on how we can potentially move forward on this exciting endeavor,” said Riccio.
Superintendent Roy Belson stated that the Mayor’s bold vision for this public/educational station will be a “win-win” for both the students in the Medford public schools as well as the community as a whole. This studio will enable the students to possess real career skills as they head onto college or into the workforce.
Mark Rumley, City Solicitor spoke about the goals of the new Access Channel:
“To choose an entity that will acknowledge and implement the fundamental American principle of Free Speech by prohibiting any control on the content of public access programming and by taking affirmative steps to make sure that public access is kept open to all potential users regardless of their viewpoint or message. The second fundamental goal is to choose an entity that will operate public access in a manner that fosters the development, administration and enforcement of policies that make production facilities and broadcast times available to all producers and all members on a fair and equitable basis.”
The intention is to arrive at a contract with a public access provider for three years.
Remarks of City Solicitor Mark Rumley on Public Access Proposal
MHS, December 19, 2014
The City of Medford will seek proposals from qualified nonprofit organizations for the operation of a public access cable television channel. The public access channel will be located here at MHS with hours of operation to be determined.
There are two fundamental goals of this effort.
The first is to choose an entity that will acknowledge and implement the fundamental American principle of Free Speech by prohibiting any control on the content of public access programming and by taking affirmative steps to make sure that public access is kept open to all potential users regardless of their viewpoint or message.
The second fundamental goal is to choose an entity that will operate public access in a manner that fosters the development, administration and enforcement of policies that make production facilities and broadcast times available to all producers and all members
on a fair and equitable basis.
The intention is to arrive at a contract with a public access provider for a three year term with an option by the City to extend for an additional three year term.
Among other things, the successful proposer must agree to the following requirements on its Board of Directors:
a. That it will consist of five members, all of whom will be elected annually from the paid membership of the public access provider by confidential written ballots. Any change or alteration of this or other rules may be cause for termination;
b. Meetings of the Board of Directors must take place here at MHS and all meetings must be convened/conducted in compliance with the MA Open Meeting Law;
c. A “quorum” for any meeting of the Board of Directors must be 50% of the number of board members plus 1- this means 50% plus 1 of the board members- not simply those who are in attendance at the meeting;
d. The Board of Directors is not to be paid and none of its members may have any independent contractual relationship with the public access provider. Conflicting interests are to be avoided;
e. The primary function of the Board of Directors will be to provide public access to the membership and the Board of Directors shall not have any special access privileges with regard to production equipment and broadcast times, or the like;
f. Membership will be on an annual basis and membership dues will not be waived except for cases of financial hardship demonstrated by objective factors and approved by the Board of Directors according to a written policy. Lifetime or complimentary memberships are to be prohibited.
g. Every bank account used by the public access provider will allow for the City of Medford to receive every monthly statement;
h. The Board of Directors shall providing the City with accurate equipment inventories when requested;
i. The Public Access Corporation will submit to an annual audit and its Board of Directors shall appear before the City Council, at least, once per year to report on its activities.
The City will make resources available for use by the successful entity:
1. The first, of course, are these rooms at MHS;
2. The City will also provide production and broadcast equipment, including editing facilities, a studio, and playback facilities;
3. There will be base funding for operations in an amount to be determined after negotiation with the City;
4. And there is the possibility of additional funding for equipment upgrades, at the sole option and approval of the City, based upon assessment of needs.
The services to be provided by the successful proposer will include, but are not necessarily limited to, the following:
1. Craft, administer and enforce by-laws, policies and procedures that foster public access and insure that all producers and members will be treated in a welcoming fashion and that no person will be discriminated against or treated in a disparate fashion.
Everyone is to be treated with respect and everyone is expected to act respectfully towards others.
This is to be more than words on a policy.
It is to be a behavioral reality the violation of which will not be tolerated.
2. Recruit individuals and community organizations utilizing vigorous outreach efforts aimed at reaching the fullness of Medford’s diversity;
3. Promote the services and programming of the public access channel through other media and community groups;
4. To engage in fundraising activities with an aim of expanding the scope of services available to public access users;
5. Implement a fair and accountable process for the checking-in/out of equipment and the reservation of facilities used by producers;
6. Conduct an orderly and fair process for the broadcast of programs produced by public access members;
7. Paid staff members are to be prohibited from being producers. Their primary purpose is to provide proficient, organized and regularly scheduled training for producers, including, as needed, training in the operation of the studio and control room facilities;
8. Paid staff members must have the same expertise in the use and basic maintenance of equipment.
Finally, here is a schedule of the anticipated dates applicable to this RFP process.
Anticipated schedule for selecting a public access provider
All dates estimated and subject to change
RFP to be issued by city January 15, 2015
First advertisement January 15, 2015
Second advertisement January 22, 2015
Pre-proposal conference January 27, 2015
Deadline for submission of written questions or requests for clarification February 3, 2015
Response to written questions February 19, 2015
Proposals due February 26, 2015
Proposal evaluation period ends March 19, 2015
Contract preparation/negotiation April 3, 2015