WENY seeking to resolve negotiation with DirecTV
Lilly Broadcasting, parent of WENY, is continuing its efforts to renew its carriage agreement with DirecTV after reaching an impasse, resulting in WENY potentially not being carried by DirecTV.
We have prepared this page to help you continue to watch your local station, WENY, if DIRECTV stops providing them in the service package you subscribed to.
If DIRECTV stops providing your local channels you can still receive our news and programming through these other channels:
• Over-the-air with an antenna
• Other satellite providers
• Cable systems all through our area
• Our news is always available online through our Apple and Android apps and Web site (WENY.com).
Every employee of our TV station lives here with you - we all give time, effort and money towards bettering our town. Each of us feels terrible we have no control over DIRECTV's decision to remove local channels from a service you pay for.
The Lilly Broadcasting negotiating team has been ready and available around-the-clock to engage in substantive negotiations with DirecTV—in hopes of concluding a fair agreement that reflects the current marketplace.
We recognize viewers will be upset, and we share your frustration.
Since 2015, DIRECTV has been involved in nearly 60% of all carriage disputes with broadcasters—by far the largest amount of any pay TV operator. In fact, DIRECTV has refused to carry one or more broadcasters nearly every week since this past Christmas.
In the end, DIRECTV’s tactics will hurt their subscribers and you—our viewers. DIRECTV is making subscribers pay for programming they are not receiving. That just isn’t fair.
While DIRECTV may stop carrying WENY, we have not ‘blacked out’ our station. You may continue to receive WENY for free, over the air, and, where available, from your local cable or satellite operators. Additionally, we believe DIRECTV should offer refunds or credits to DIRECTV subscribers who are not receiving WENY. We recommend that subscribers contact DirecTV customer service to ask about a refund or a credit at 1-877-710-6331.
We hope DirecTV shares our sense of urgency in keeping WENY on for its subscribers. We appreciate the patience and support of viewers such as you, and we will continue to work diligently to reach a fair agreement that reflects the value of our stations in the current market place.
If you would like to learn more about local television and what can be done to help, please visit
You can also determine the type of antenna needed to receive the signals of Lilly Broadcasting television stations at http://www.antennaweb.org/.
Finally, to contact DirecTV regarding the inconvenience caused by its unfair tactics and unreasonable demands, please call DirecTV customer service at 1-877-710-6331.
Farm Bill, Food Fight
ELMIRA (WENY) -- For the next five years the United States will be spending hundreds of billions of dollars on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or SNAP, commonly known as food stamps. The program was established in the late 1930's to help low income families with healthy and nutritious foods, but sometimes people take advantage of the program with you footing the bill.
"We do see a lot of folks that are parents that still have a hard time making ends meet. We also see a lot of disabled and also have senior citizens that use the benefits," said Donna Truax, Chemung County's Head Social Welfare Examiner.
In Chemung County about 8,000 families rely on the benefits to help them. People like Mary Horton, a mother of two battling Lupus.
"I had to be in and out of group homes and different facilities for multiple years of my life," said Mary.
However, that's not always the face of these benefits. About 5-10% of recipients take advantage of the system.
"There are going to be things in life where we need to provide the helping hand," said Congressman Tom Reed. "We just have to make sure the program doesn't become a situation where it's a way of life and it's subject to waste, fraud and abuse. And there is waste, fraud and abuse in the system."
Some of that waste, fraud and abuse that Congressman Tom Reed referred to happens at grocery stores. People sometimes sell their benefits to other people or they simply can give their pin to a pal since the cards, are pretty similar to a debit card. Grocery stores are not responsible for checking for identification.
"The children by far have to suffer whatever their parents decisions are," said Mary. "I have to make choices when I go to the store and I often say 'We will get a snack or we will have this or that," but I can't say for sure we are going to get ice cream and cookies and the sugary cereal."
Those decisions aren't always the easiest, so many families look to food pantries for that extra help. Some, abuse them and that's putting a pinch on many local pantries.
"In any system that we create, you're always going to have people looking for loopholes to sort of to sort of work it to their best interest," said Natasha Thompson, President and CEO, Food Bank of the Southern Tier. "So then, we have to ask ourselves, do we want to enact all these huge draconian changes to be able to stamp out that 5-10% that's going to take advantage of anything no matter what? I mean it's just human nature."
But it is fraud and those who are caught could face jail time.
"I mean fraud is a lie, and lying and fraud is a theft, and that's burglary," said Mary. "That should be a crime punishable by law. If you can catch them."
And sometimes, that's the hardest part, but the department of Social Services has a Special Investigations unit.
"There's a lot of variables that could be fraud and we look in to every allegation that comes in," said Pamela Morey, Senior Social Welfare Examiner.
Congressman Reed said he's worked hard to stiffen up penalties.
"A lot of times there's a sense that this is a victimless crime, but there is a victim here: that person that needs it is no longer getting access to that money because maybe someone else is taking that money for inappropriate purposes," said Congressman Reed.
So in the meantime, people like Mary do their best to make ends meet. She's found couponing has helped her family out as she works to provide the best future for her kids.
"You only live once and you only have one childhood and like I said, mine wasn't the greatest. I'm sure there are many other viewers out there that have had traumatic issues anytime in there life. I didn't want that for my kids," said Mary.
Mary's worked hard to do a lot with a little, something she says she learned from her late mother. She wants to pass her skills on to other people, and is looking for a place to meet and trade coupons, or teach people how to save on a tight budget-- the legal way.
If you want to join Mary with couponing, you can e-mail reporter Tanja Rekhi at email@example.com and she will put you in touch with Mary. You can use SNAP benefits to buy seeds for crops and at many farmer's markets.