Source: Sherman Publications

CPAC turns dial to ‘Independence Television’

by Mary Keck

May 09, 2012

If you see “Independence Television” on your screen, don’t grab the remote; you’re still watching Clarkston Public Access Center (CPAC) but under a new name.

“We’re trying to signal that things are changing,” said Manager Joe Barnhart, who joined CPAC in February.

As for dropping “Clarkston” from the name, Barnhart explained, “geographically, we’re bigger than Clarkston.”

He also pointed out the new title is a play on the word “Independent,” which not only represents the township’s name, but also the kind of programming available.

Citizens can develop audio and visual productions on any subject except “you just can’t break the law or get naked,” Barnhart said with a laugh.

“People on public access television do push the boundaries and that’s okay," he said. "We’re sensitive to what time of day things can run. If something is a little too over the edge, we’ll run it at night when kids aren’t around.”

According to Barnhart, CPAC’s new title is only a preview of what’s to come as he’s in the process of purchasing new equipment too.

On May 2, the Township Board of Trustees authorized not only a name switch, but also $62,000, which will be used to buy three up-to-date cameras along with “nuts and bolts hardware that actually puts the programs on the channel.”

Barnhart has the studio’s long-term modernization in mind as well.

He hopes to renovate the control room with new equipment and the studio with better microphones. He also intends to create a more public-friendly space with some remodeling to transform the building, which he described as “showing its age.”

“We want to be a community resource and a place where people can go for equipment and expertise” on video and audio production, Barnhart explained.

From his point of view, CPAC isn’t currently able to provide the services it should because of the lack of quality, modern equipment.

CPAC will switch to “Independence Television” on the air by early next week, and residents should stay tuned for future changes to their usual programming.