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Two communications giants have reached an agreement that will keep WTVC NewsChannel 9 and FOX Chattanooga on the air for customers of AT&T.

After weeks of negotiations — and multiple deadlines that came and went — Sinclair Broadcasting and AT&T made a multi-year deal, Sinclair announced today.

"(We) are happy that we were able to come to a resolution with DIRECTV, AT&T TV and U-verse," said Todd Ricke, WTVC general manager. "Our goal was to ensure our viewers minimal disruption during the process, and we are relieved that we were able to continue to provide our viewers with the best local content in news and entertainment on our stations."

Sinclair had warned AT&T DIRECTV, AT&T TV Now and U-verse customers that they might lose access to TV stations owned by Sinclair if the companies couldn't reach a deal.

Sinclair owns, operates, or provides services to 191 television stations in 89 markets, including WTVC NewsChannel 9 and FOX Chattanooga. AT&T provides more than 100 million U.S. consumers with entertainment and communications across TV, mobile and broadband services.

This dispute could have affected access to local television stations for about 300,000 people across Tennessee.

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