BPTV OPERATIONAL GUIDELINES
UPDATED-3/05 

 

 

The Municipality of Bethel Park owns and operates BPTV; the Bethel Park Public Access Television facility.  It is free of charge to Bethel Park residents and organizations that wish to produce cable television productions.  The facility was originally equipped through a grant from the local cable company required by the 1987 Cable franchise Renewal Agreement. 

 

The following are operational guidelines for the use and operation of the Bethel Park Public Access Facility.  All persons who borrow equipment or air tapes on the public access channels are required to certify that they have read, understand and agree to be bound by these rules. 

 

A.     BASIC FUNCTION

 

To air programs submitted by residents as met by Facility Guidelines. 

 

B.     STAFFING

 

    1. A Facility Director will oversee day-to-day operations; coordinate facility and equipment use, and educate members of the public in facility use. 
    2. Volunteers will be trained and certified by Facility Director on equipment use and broadcast standards. 

 

C.     HOURS

 

      The hours of facility operation will be determined by the needs of the community and will be 

       revised as appropriate.

 

D. PROPERTY

 

      Except for limitations arising from copyrights and/or licenses, all programs, shows, segments,

      interviews, and any items taped with the facility equipment become the property of the   

      Municipality of Bethel Park for future use.

  E.  EQUIPMENT

 

  1. Production facilities containing DV and DVD production formats are available for use by the following parties:

 

    1. Any resident of Bethel Park
    2. Any organization or group of Bethel Park, which meets the following criteria:

1.       is located within Bethel Park

2.       at least 33% of whose members are Bethel Park Residents

 

            BPTV's equipment and facilities will not be available for the use by anyone who does not 

            fit within the given criteria. 

 

 

      2   Prior to release of equipment, residents must verify their addresses and that they are at 

           least 18 years of age; if under the age of 18 an Equipment Release Form for volunteers 

           under the age of 18 must be filled out and returned to the BPTV Facility Director.

 

      3   Equipment will be loaned to certified applicants only possessing ID cards to verify 

            certification.  Only certified individuals are permitted to use equipment belonging to the

            Bethel Park Public Access Facility. (volunteers in training will be allowed to operate 

            facility equipment under supervision by certified volunteers or the facility director 

            throughout the duration of their training.)

 

4         Equipment must be reserved in advance for use.  It is the responsibility of the Producer or 

      certified user to make arrangements with the Facility director to pick up and return the 

      equipment.

 

5         Any local producer using the studio facility must request and confirm studio time in 

Advance.

 

6         The producer accepts all responsibility for all volunteers, equipment, and personal 

      property (other producers' sets, chairs, etc.) contained within the studio space.  The 

      duration of the producer's responsibility begins with set-up and continues until the studio 

      is restored to the condition in which it was found.

 

7         All videotaping locations must be cleared with the Facility Director.

   

8         Any equipment pick-up or editing appointment, which is not met within 30 minutes of the 

      scheduled time, without notice, may be forfeited at the sole discretion of the Public

      Access Facility Director.

 

9         BPTV reserves the right to refuse the use of the equipment and facility to any person(s) 

      who appears to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol or who disrupts the facility or

      has previously abused/misused the equipment as determined by the Facility Director. 

 

10.    Loss, theft or misuse of equipment and facilities owned by the Municipality of Bethel 

       Park , will be the financial responsibility of the resident, organization or group who signs 

       out the equipment or facility.

 

11.    BPTV will provide the necessary recording format for each resident/group/organization 

       requesting equipment use.  All tapes and programs will be the property of the 

       Municipality of Bethel Park.

 

12.    All video tapes will remain in the Public Access Facility for editing and post-production

       use.  A master copy of each program produced at BPTV will be kept in the station's 

       archives. Any producer/organization etc. wishing to attain a copy of any BPTV program 

       must follow the Program Copying Procedure as follows:

 

a.       The resident/organization, etc. must provide their own recording material (VHS tape,  

      DVD, etc.) to be submitted to the Public Access Facility Director.

 

b.       The resident/organization, etc. must pay the following fee to the Bethel Park 

      Municipal Receptionist during regular business hours:

                       -$5 for any program with a total running time below one (1) hour

                       - $10 for any program with a total running time that exceeds one (1) hour      

    

c.       A payment slip will be provided by the Municipal Receptionist to be turned in to the 

      Facility Director with the recording material provided by the resident/organization, 

      etc. to validate the transaction, and to provide the Facility Director with the proper 

      contact information to notify the above party when their copy is complete.

 

d.       The Facility Director will contact the resident/organization, etc. at the completion of 

      their copy(s) at which point it becomes the responsibility of the receiver of the copy 

      to make arrangements with the Facility Director for pick-up.


 F. PROGRAMMING

1. Scheduling programming to be cablecast on Bethel Park Channel 7 is the sole discretion of the 

    Facility Director.

 

2. Any individual seeking a political office may use the Public Access Facility as available up to 60 days before the election, whether it is the Primary or General election.  During the 60 days that immediately precede either election, programming will be limited to those programs (i.e. Candidate's Night) produced by non-partisan organizations such as the League of Women Voters. Political Programming is defined as any program or announcement produced for a candidate seeking election or reelection or programs or announcements produced relating to any community topic that will be voted on as a ballot issue.   All programs produced with the intent of promoting a candidate will be subject to the following guidelines:

 

a.        All political promotional programming shall be aired on Government Channel 17.

b.       No political promotional programming for any one candidate should exceed five (5) minutes in length.

c.       Tapes should be submitted no later than Thursday at 4:00 PM the week prior to its intended initial airdate.

d.       All promotional material submitted to BPTV will be aired in the order in which they are received during times scheduled by the director for said programming to be televised.

e.       Any requested airing times will be taken into consideration, but are subject to the scheduling restraints of the director due to the programming and deck space limitations of the station.

 

             3. Bethel Park Public Access Television welcomes tapes of general Community interest.  Airing of

                 videos is at the discretion of the Facility Director. General guidelines for the decision will be

                 whether the program appears to violate any local ordinance, state or federal law or guideline as

                 observed by regular broadcast television operations (i.e., slander, copyright, nudity, etc.)

 

             4. All licensing fees, copyright approval and talent releases shall be the sole responsibility of the 

                 person(s) submitting tapes, and they shall indemnify and hold harmless the Municipality of 

                 Bethel Park.  Bethel Park residents and/or organizations shall have first priority for Facility use

                 and cablecasting.  Shows not presented by a resident of Bethel Park or a Bethel Park

                 organization will have to be approved by the Facility Director in consultation with the Cable

                 Board.  

 

             5. Programs may be run multiple times throughout a standard broadcast week or Monday through

                 Sunday.  Cablecasting during non-business hours will be restricted to the automated playback

                 equipment.

 

             6. If shows/programs are not completed or delivered to the Facility Director prior to the Program

                 Schedule being completed, or air time designated, the time slot allocated shall be pre-empted and

                 be filled with a suitable replacement.

 

             7. No programming may be used to solicit funds or raise money for any organization.  No program  

                 produced at the Facility may be used for private gain or profit.

 

G. TECHNICAL STANDARDS 

1.        All submitted programs shall be on DVD. 

 

2.       Program Quality should be suitable for cablecasting.  Programs with excessive dropouts, distortion or other technical difficulties will not be used for cablecast, at the discretion of the Facility director. 

 

3.       Bethel Park Public Access Television is not responsible for any damage to materials submitted for cablecasting by an outside producer.

 

H. VIOLATIONS

 

                Any person or organization that violates these Operational Guidelines may be barred from using the system by the Facility Director.  The Director will send notice of this decision to the address listed on the equipment sign-out-sheet.  Any person or organization so barred may appeal such a decision to the Bethel Park Cable Television Board.  The Board reserves the right to impose fees to cover the expenses incurred as a result of an appeal.  The Board also reserves the right to require a security deposit or impose a monetary penalty from groups and/or individuals who have violated these Operational Guidelines.

 

 

I. COMMUNITY BULLETIN BOARD

 

  1. All requests for the Community Bulletin Board must conform with the following policy 

      without exception.

 

  1. Deadline for announcements is TUESDAY MORNING, 9:00 AM, in the Bethel Park Public

       Access Television Facility located in the bottom floor of the Municipal Building.  Announcements

       may be faxed to our office.

 

  1. It is suggested that you keep your announcements as clear as possible to avoid confusion.  Please

       do not break words from line-to-line.  Each line should be completed as you want the 

       announcement to appear on the Bulletin Board.  The staff will automatically center all messages

       unless noted.

 

  1. The Community Bulletin Board will primarily accept announcements submitted by a Bethel Park

        organization or resident.  Announcements submitted by a non-Bethel Park organization or non-

        resident will be placed on the Community Bulletin Board if space allows as determined by the

        Facility Director.  The person submitting the announcement must sign the form in order for

        it to be valid.  The Facility Director may request that the organization/resident submit

        documentation to verify its non-profit, charitable or educational status.  Each

        announcement cablecast will include the name and phone number of a representative to

        whom any questions or comments can be directed.

 

 5. All announcements will be of the non-profit/fundraising type, which advertise a specific activity or event.  No commercial, business or political oriented announcements are accepted.  Announcements shall not include any comments or exhortations supporting or opposing any person, item, issue, organization or business.  Pennsylvania registered charitable organizations may submit an announcement for fundraisers.  No other organizations may request money on an announcement.  Solicitation of funds for political organizations or candidates is not permitted.  

 

  1. Ongoing events and announcements may run for two (2) weeks consecutive, then replaced.

 

  1. Bethel Park Public Access Television reserves the right to reject any submission.  Announcements may be edited for clarity as determined by the Facility Director.