Public Access Station
From the franchise fee attached to every Time Warner Cable bill, the City of Saco collects thousands of dollars each year specifically designated for PEG programming (Public Access, Educational, and Government stations). The issue is the City Council then takes this money and deposits it right into the General Fund instead of adequately funding what I call "TV Democracy'.
As someone who started his career on TATV Channel 3 being a TV host for several years and overseeing operations as its Station Manager, I understand its importance, but we desperately need a Public Access station in our community. This could mean any community member could utilize the facilities. Anyone could start a show discussing community events or potential solutions to the issues of the day.
Biddeford Public Access has a great model to use when it comes to discussing a similar program for us in Saco. I've had several discussions across the river when I was a producer/host for their channel after I worked at TATV and the staff are enthusiastic to help us develop a similar Saco Public Access Station.
There seems to be a need in the community for someone to organize Saco communications. While we might not be able to afford to hire a Communications Director for the city, we can bring on student interns who are either interested in it at Thornton Academy or are studying the program in college.
Many times when there are events happening and it's not in the Courier, we have to rely on word of mouth to hear about it. Better utilization of online social networking through website, Facebook, and Twitter, in addition to signs posted around town and a community calendar on TATV would go a long way to stimulate more awareness of local activities. The same could be said for a need for greater awareness of decisions being made at the local and state level governments.
* Bring on High School and College city interns to help manage/improve communications
* Heavily use Facebook/Twitter to get messages out to public
* I personally plan to continue my work with the city as I've done recently as a communications intern and Social Media Committee member