American Urban Radio Network personnel were able to return to their offices after being locked out by the company’s partner Sheridan Broadcasting Company for five days.
Common Pleas Judge Christine Ward issued a temporary injunction ordering Sheridan to reopen the doors Sept. 19 and ordered the parties to reconvene in her chambers two days later.
As reported earlier in the New Pittsburgh Courier online edition, Sheridan locked the doors to its broadcasting facilities Sept. 14, citing non-payment for services provided to AURN by its subsidiary Sheridan Broadcasting Network dating back several months and the resulting inability to pay rent.
But in addition to the AURN personnel, Sheridan also locked out its own news, sports and entertainment staff—who create the content Sheridan’s subsidiary, Sheridan Broadcasting Network, sells to AURN for broadcast.
On Sept. 16, Sheridan paid half of the back-due rent and agreed to pay the balance within 30 days, said Ron Davenport Jr., special counsel and president of SBC’s radio division, who also confirmed Sheridan had complied with the court order.
But AURN President for Programming Operations and Affiliations Jerry Lopes, said while his people are back in the office, the Sheridan people are not. The only content currently going out is gospel programming, which was also shut down for a long enough time to have cost the network at least two stations.