Local cable programming is almost as old as cable television itself. Most early local programming efforts were developed by small independent cable owners with ties to the local community. Because of their interest in community affairs, some of these small local owners began local programming in the early 1950's.
The first true community operated public access channel began in the Dale City, VA, in 1968. And in the following year, with the advent of the first portable black & white camera and reel to reel Television equipment, it paved the way for public access television channels across the United States.
Public Access first came to the East Peoria Area in 1972 with the formation of the East Peoria Cable Television Commission. This city commission was established by the East Peoria City Council to insure the cable company's compliance of the franchise agreement and to oversee the operation of the Public, Governmental and Educational Access cable channels. It was slow in the beginning, but public access channel 2 went on the air April 8, 1976 at 7:00 pm with the tape delay showing of the East Peoria City Council meeting.
In the months ahead, the commission decided to dissolve itself and to become a non-profit organization. The decision was made mainly due to the fact that the FCC preferred public access channels to be operated by non-profits, thus avoid possible government censorship and it would also open the channel to more financial opportunities. And so in August of 1976 the East Peoria Cable Television Corporation was formed, and has been the governing body of the East side community television channel to this date.