Wednesday's broadcast of the Honolulu Mayoral Debate was much broader than we first expected.
KITV was not being transmitted on Oceanic Cable because of the ongoing transmission negotiations between our parent company, Hearst Corporation, and Time Warner Cable.
But, in an unprecendented move, Hawaii's broadcast community came together to air this important public service.
KGMB, KHNL, KFVE and KHVH radio all simulcast the 90-minute KITV/Civil Beat debate. PBS aired a rebroadcast at 9 p.m.
With KITV not on Oceanic Cable, local broadcasters stepped up and banded together.
"We're really thankful our broadcast competitors and partners here in town have chosen along with us to put the public interest first ahead of commercial interest and that's the role broadcasters are meant to play," said KITV General Manager Andrew Jackson.
"Our decision really starts with the support we have to our fellow broadcasters. We have a lot of respect for KITV and what your news operation does and we know that this debate is very important. We're following and tracking it as you are and we really want the public tonight to have the benefit of being able to watch it," said Hawaii News Now General Manager Rick Blangiardi.
"We had the leading mayoral candidates with us last week on 'Forum.' You have to keep hearing, messaging. You have to keep hearing what they say and shoot questions at them. Letting them talk to and at each other. The more discussion. the more issues come out the better," said President and CEO of PBS Hawaii Leslie Wilcox.
With just a month to this year's primary, the candidates answered an array of questions helping voters better understand the candidates. They were appreciative too, to reach such a large, combined audience.
"I gotta tell you, you guys putting this together at the last minute was an enormous public service," said Mayor Peter Carlisle. "It looked like this was going to be lost and because of the way it was handled it's going to be broadcast far further that it would have."