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Monday, April 20, 2015

Roger Sherrie
Democrat candidate for Lockport mayor Roger Sherrie has asked radio station WLVL and the LCTV cable TV channel for equal access to broadcast air time.

In a letter to station managers, Sherrie wrote, “The Communications Act of 1934 contained provisions to ensure fair and equitable treatment of candidates for public office; assuring the listening public a full airing of community and campaign issues.”

“While the Act and FCC rules have been much amended over the years, I believe the precept that it is fair and reasonable for broadcasters to provide equal opportunities to all candidates is still a valid notion so as not to be advancing the candidacy of any one person,” he wrote.

Incumbent Mayor McCaffrey appears regularly on LCTV’s Ask the Mayor program and "Niagara News Hour," a WLVL radio program hosted by Eric Duvall.

Sherrie declined to say whether he could take any action should either broadcast media decline his request for air time or end McCaffrey’s appearances until after the November elections. “I believe voters expect broadcasters to exercise good faith judgment regardless of what statutes may or may not provide. I believe these stations will be fair-minded,” he said.

WLVL News Director and Talk Show Host Eric DuVall said, "Roger Sherrie obviously knows how to contact our station because we got the same press release as other area media alluding to the possibility of legal action if we continue our monthly interview and call-in segment with Lockport Mayor Anne McCaffrey. It’s worth noting Mr. Sherrie never used that contact information to request an appearance on WLVL before sending out his release.

“The general election is still six months away and there will be ample time for campaign coverage in the summer and fall," DuVall continued. "Of course the station’s coverage will include invitations to all candidates on the ballot to appear on air. Until then, we will continue both our regular station programming and the unbiased news coverage WLVL listeners expect and demand.”

LCTV Operations Manager Rich Zapp could not immediately be reached by phone this morning.

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