IT CLOSED? WHY?|
During the final times of BHTV, there were numerous appeals by station personnel, Board Members and volunteers alike
urging the City of Beverly Hills to continue to fund the operations of the station, and one particular program was a live
It was hosted by the President of the Board, Victor Weiner, who challenged the Council Members
position which was not to fund BHTV- Beverly Hills. This was one of the final appeals to the City to maintain this fine
asset to the Community that prided itself on being the best. Even one of the Council members said she wanted her city to have
the best Public Access: an example to others in the country.
On Monday evening, February 6, 1995, the live "BHTV President's Message" program aired for the last time, with another final
appeal to the City not to abandon the station.
On Friday, February 3rd, the City Manager placed the Board of Directors on notice by sending a memo to the Board
President, and during the following Tuesday, February 7th City Council Meeting, the community, volunteers and staff of BHTV all spoke out
in protest against the City demand to close the station. Many of the volunteers, after leaving the Council chambers,
returned to the Channel 3 studios, and aired on live television their appeals to the public to respond to the outrageous moves that
the City Council would be making to close down Public Access.
BHTV closed when the Beverly Hills City Council directed building custodians to change the locks
and evict all occupants before 5pm on February 8, in spite of the fact that they were evicting a
California Nonprofit organization against their will. The City later negotiated with the Board's Secretary-Treasurer, and in return for indemnity and all the television equipment the Access Corporation agreed to dissolve the Corporation.
Some say the City Council was uncomfortable with the idea of the public having its own venue. Having a television channel
where the people of the community could voice their opinions, particularly against the actions of the Council, became an
unexpected threat to them, and that Council sought to remove the channel before the "embarrassment"
became too politically damaging. The excuse of not being able to afford Public Access became a joke in this famous
city paved with gold.