August 6, 2007
K-Love's Stealthy Pittsburgh Rimshot
TOWER SITE CALENDAR 2008 - COMING SOON!!!
*So there we were on Friday night, wearing
our "editor of 100000watts.com"
hat, plugging in call letter updates, when we noticed a new callsign
- WKEL, for EMF's new signal in Confluence, PENNSYLVANIA.
That was all well and good - except for one question: what
new signal in Confluence, PA? Actually, there was a second
question, too: where the heck is Confluence, PA? And a
third: how did a new signal in an obscure western Pennsylvania
town slip right past us?
a bit of frenzied digging, it turns out that the class A signal
on 98.5 isn't a completely new facility after all - it's the
infamous "Meyersdale FM" that went unclaimed in one
round of FCC spectrum auctions, then went to EMF for $376,000
in another round of auctions back in January. It also turns out
that, under the FCC's new rules for moving an FM allocation,
it's going to be much easier for moves like this one to happen
in the same stealthy way this one did, through a minor amendment
to a pending application.
In this particular case, it turns out that EMF filed the application
way back in February, it was accepted in March, and was granted
in late June.
So where is Confluence, and why would EMF want to move an
unbuilt station there from Meyersdale? It's a community of some
800 people, on the Youghiogheny River about 10 miles west of
Meyersdale and 15 miles southeast of Uniontown - but the application
calls for a transmitter site well to the northwest of Confluence,
near Mill Run in Fayette County.
By itself, the new WKEL won't even approach Pittsburgh rimshot
status - it'll be nearly a 50-mile shot, on a channel that's
first-adjacent to in-town WOGI (98.3 Duquesne). But it will put
a decent signal over much of Fayette County, including Uniontown
and Connellville, and it will eliminate the need for EMF to feed
its chain of (as yet unbuilt) "K-Love" translators
serving Pittsburgh from a primary station way down in Grafton,
At the same time, EMF eliminates a big overlap that would
have existed between the Meyersdale signal and its existing WLKH
(97.7 Somerset), which already serves Johnstown and a big swath
of territory to the south.
But in the process, it's playing an interesting game. In order
to take part in the auction for the "Meyersdale" frequency,
EMF had to apply for a commercial license; an application for
a new noncommercial license can only take place during a filing
window, and the next window, coming this fall, will cover only
the "reserved" portion of the dial, from 88.1-91.9.
EMF tells the FCC it pledges to follow all the commercial rules,
including building a main studio to serve Confluence. However,
it also acknowledges that it has the right, at some later point,
to change the station's status to noncommercial - which it will
have to do in order to follow the rest of its usual game plan,
including filing for the main-studio waiver that will make WKEL
a satellite of KLVR in California and daisy-chaining the noncommercial
translators that will bring the signal into Pittsburgh.
It's all strictly within the letter of the rules, as is everything
that EMF does, but it seems - to us, anyway - to stretch the
spirit of the rules more than a little bit.
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*Up in Montrose, between Scranton and Binghamton, WPEL may
soon be abandoning the 1250 frequency that's been its home for
60 years. The southern gospel station (sister to the big-signal
religious WPEL-FM on 96.5) has been granted a CP to move down
the dial to 800, where it will still run 1000 watts by day, and
will add night service with 135 watts, all non-directional.
There's a new AM signal coming to the southeastern Pennsylvania
airwaves, as Four Rivers Community Broadcasting's application
for 1390 in Morrisville becomes one of 46 "singleton"
applicants from the 2004 filing window to be cleared by the FCC
to take the next step. That's the filing of a full Form 301 application,
due by September 26. Four Rivers' initial application for the
Bucks County signal asked for 250 watts, non-directional day
and night from a tower on the north side of Levittown.
The obituaries for Tom Snyder, who died July 29 at 71, focused
- and rightly so - on his national talk-show work for NBC ("Tomorrow"),
CBS ("The Late Late Show") and so on. But we can't
let this giant of the industry go without noting the role he
played in the early days of "Eyewitness News" at Philadelphia's
KYW-TV (Channel 3), where he arrived in 1965 to anchor the noon
newscast. Snyder also hosted a morning talk show, "Contact,"
at the station before being called up to the big leagues to anchor
at KNBC in Los Angeles in 1970. He later anchored at New York's
WNBC-TV (1974-77) and WABC-TV (1982-85) in addition to his network
gigs. We're firing up the ol' colortini in his memory, and watching
those pictures fly through the air one last time...
*In upstate NEW YORK, all the numbers
are in now on the big Clear Channel/Galaxy/Roser/EMF deal that's
about to shake up the Utica radio dial, and it's clear that both
Galaxy's Ed Levine and Ken Roser of Roser Communications come
out as big winners.
big number first - Galaxy will pay Clear Channel $3.1 million
for its nine-station cluster in Utica/Rome. But Levine won't
need anywhere near that much cash by the time he's done spinning
off five of the Clear Channel stations and one more from his
EMF will pay Galaxy a total of $1,574,000 - $1,224,000 for
Galaxy's big-signal WRCK (107.3 Utica) and another $350,000 for
Clear Channel rimshot WOKR (93.5 Remsen). This piece of the deal
also allows Galaxy to obtain an independent appraisal of those
stations' fair-market value, and to take a charitable deduction
on the difference between that value and the actual sale price.
Roser, meanwhile, will pay just $650,000 for the "Kiss"
combo (WSKS 97.9 Whitesboro/WSKU 105.5 Little Falls) along with
WUTQ (1550 Utica) and WADR (1480 Remsen) - a remarkable price,
considering Roser sold the two FMs and then-WLFH (1230 Little
Falls) to Clear Channel for $2.15 million just five years ago.
As for Galaxy, Levine ends up paying a net price of just $876,000
to add rocker WOUR (96.9 Utica), hot AC WUMX (102.5 Rome) and
sports WIXT (1230 Little Falls)/WRNY (1350 Rome) to his cluster,
plus whatever charitable deduction he can get from the EMF sale
- plus the competitive edge he'll obtain from owning WOUR and
eliminating its rock-format competition, WOKR and WRCK.
It's no wonder, then, that Levine described the purchase to
NERW as "the best deal I've ever done."
of Rochester's WRUR-FM (88.5 Rochester) is tightening its physical
connection to public broadcaster WXXI, which operates the station
for the university. The FCC has granted an application to move
WRUR's antenna from the Hyatt Hotel in downtown Rochester to
the WXXI tower on Pinnacle Hill in Brighton. WRUR's power level
will remain almost identical - 3 kW/345' from the Hyatt, 3 kW/358'
from Pinnacle. (Disclosure: your editor is a part-time employee
Two New York broadcasters are moving ahead with their applications
from the 2004 AM window: Bud Williamson's been cleared to file
a Form 301 application for a construction permit for 1400 in
Middletown (1 kW day and night), while Michael Celenza gets the
go-ahead for a new signal on 1120 in Little Falls (1 kW non-directional
days, 250 watts from two towers at night).
*Multicultural Broadcasting's WNSW (1430
Newark) has signed off from its two-tower site next to the Garden
State Parkway in Union, NEW JERSEY, and the station is
now operating at reduced power from the WPAT (930 Paterson) site
nine miles north in Clifton. WNSW (which changed format not long
ago, from Korean to Spanish religion) holds a construction permit
to go to 10 kW days, 7 kW nights, diplexing on all four of WPAT's
towers, but Multicultural has to resolve the interference issue
with co-owned WNYG (1440 Babylon NY) first; it's hoping the FCC
will move quickly on its application to move WNYG out east to
BEAT THE PASSWORD RUSH! We've been holding out against the inevitable
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we can no longer deny reality: if NERW is to continue on as the
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not just those who pay for it voluntarily. So this fall, current
issues of NERW and most of the NERW archives from 2003 onward
will become password-protected for access by paid subscribers
(A few recent issues will remain
accessible without a password, and we have no intention of excluding
anyone who's truly unable to pay from reading the site. You'll
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If you're already a NERW subscriber,
nothing will change for you. Before the transition takes place,
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If you're not already a NERW
subscriber, now's the time to do something about it. By becoming
a charter subscriber now, you'll get the benefit of our current
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we mention that you'll be first in line for the Tower Site
Calendar 2008, free to our premium subscribers?
We've tried for many years to
hold off this financial reality, but it's become hard to ignore.
Not long ago, our pal Dave Hughes put part of his excellent DCRTV.com site behind a pay
wall, and mandatory subscriptions are an established way of life
at LARadio.com and reelradio.com, too, just
to name a few. And even with a subscription model, we've just
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If you still haven't subscribed
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And if you have become one of our many subscribers, thank
*Sinclair Broadcast Group is bowing out of
TV ownership in MASSACHUSETTS, selling WGGB-TV (Channel
40) to John Gormally's Gormally Broadcasting for $21.2 million
and restoring local ownership to the TV market for the first
time since the 1983 sale of WWLP-TV (Channel 22). Gormally publishes
the "Business West" business newspaper, and the ABC
affiliate is his first television property.
always seemed like something of an odd market for Sinclair, which
entered with the $310 million purchase of Guy Gannett's six TV
stations (including WGME-TV in Portland, Maine, as well) in 1998.
While Sinclair has built duopolies, usually including Fox
affiliates, in most of its markets, there simply weren't enough
stations in the Springfield market to make a duopoly work. WGGB
also retained a full local news operation while many of Sinclair's
stations switched to the now-defunct "News Central"
model. It remains far behind market giant WWLP in the ratings,
and faces new competition from Meredith's CBS affiliate, WSHM-LP,
so Gormally will have his work cut out for him.
In TV news from Boston, Jen Street is departing WBZ-TV (Channel
4) after 17 years, the last two of them as news director. She's
moving to the Massachusetts Eye & Ear Infirmary, where she'll
be vice president for communications; no replacement has been
named yet at WBZ.
Meanwhile over at WHDH-TV (Channel 7), Kim Khazei is returning
to the station where she anchored from 1993-2001. After taking
a break to raise her children, Khazei's taking the anchor chair
at 4 PM and 5:30 PM, as well as reporting for the 10 PM and 11
PM newscasts on WLVI (Channel 56) and WHDH-TV, respectively.
It's taken more than a year, but the FCC has now signed off
on the settlement deal between Living Proof, Inc. and two of
its rival applicants for the use of 91.7 west of Boston - the
University of Massachusetts Boston's WUMB and the channel's incumbent
occupant, WAVM (91.7 Maynard).
For many years now, we've been chronicling WAVM's fight to
upgrade from its unprotected class D status to a protected class
A signal, and we're sure there are a lot of relieved folks in
Maynard now that the station is in possession of a construction
permit that will take WAVM from 16 watts to 500 watts/77' DA.
(Unlike an earlier WAVM CP for class A operation, which expired
unbuilt some years back, we're pretty sure this one will be built,
and quickly.) WUMB has its CP, too, for a share-time operation
licensed to Stow but sharing the WAVM transmitter and antenna.
And Living Proof now has its CP, for 572 watts/115' on
91.7 in Lunenburg, with a DA aimed mostly to the north.
The only odd man out, as it were, is CSN International, whose
application for 91.7 in Lexington has now been dismissed.
The news isn't as good for Dennis Jackson's Radio Westfield,
which has been trying to get the FCC to grant it a CP for a new
1340 signal in Westfield. The Commission has dismissed Radio
Westfield's application, saying that it's impossible to put an
interference-free signal over all of Westfield while avoiding
interference with WWRV (1330 New York); Jackson had argued that
the FCC should look at the "urbanized area" of Westfield,
rather than the incorporated boundaries, but the Commission says
that argument applies only to "townships" (what New
Englanders would call "towns"), not to incorporated
cities such as Westfield.
(NERW notes that several LPFM applicants tried to use the
Westfield neighborhood of Wyben as a city of license; perhaps
that would satisfy the Commission?)
the rancor continues to grow over Howie Carr's attempt to bolt
his longtime home at Entercom's WRKO (680 Boston) to become the
new morning man at Greater Media's WTKK (96.9 Boston); last week's
action included a countersuit from Entercom against Carr's lawsuit
seeking to free himself from his WRKO contract. That brought
a couple of revelations: paperwork accidentally left unsealed
disclosed that Carr is paid just under $800,000 annually for
his WRKO afternoon show, and we now know that Cary Pahigian is
not only president and general manager of Carr affiliate WGAN
(560) in Portland, Maine - but also Carr's agent. That's prompted
some earnest hand-wringing about conflict of interest, but as
long as WGAN owner Saga Communications knows about the arrangement,
who are we to second-guess it?
We jumped the gun a bit on this one a few issues ago, but
now our ears on the South Shore have confirmed it: WGTX (102.3
Truro), the former WCDJ, is back on the air with oldies, as "The
Cape's Oldies, Dunes 102." It's primarily an Outer Cape
signal, and it's ID'ing with Provincetown at the top of each
*One of RHODE ISLAND's most popular
sports franchises is moving to a new radio home. Entercom's WEEI-FM
(103.7 Westerly) has signed a deal to carry Providence College
basketball for the next five seasons, beginning this fall. The
Friars had been heard on Citadel's WSKO and WPRO all the way
back to the 1989 season. The move will displace WEEI-FM's Celtics
broadcasts on about half a dozen game nights; no word yet on
where those will end up (especially now that the team shows signs
of life again!)
*VERMONT Public Radio is going daily
with its "Vermont Edition" midday newsmagazine. Beginning
August 13, the program will air from noon-1 PM Monday-Friday,
with Jane Lindholm hosting. (The show had been a Wednesday-only
weekly broadcast since its 2005 launch.)
Local band Grace Potter and the Nocturnals recorded new theme
music for the show; check out a neat page on the VPR
website with pictures of the recording session and audio
of the new theme.
And speaking of VPR, it has new calls for its classical outlet
on 95.1 in Sunderland, with transmitter on Mount Equinox: the
former WJAN becomes WVTQ.
A well-known former Burlington morning host is looking to
get back in the game. Louie Manno, who was paired with Jim Condon
on Burlington stations WQCR and WKDR (and before that at the
old WFAN in Connecticut) through much of the 80s and 90s, recently
sold his "Radio Deli" after more than six years behind
the counter. Now he's looking to return to the airwaves, either
on the air or behind the scenes, and we wish him well!
*A few new call letters in NEW HAMPSHIRE:
WRNH is the new set of calls for Liveair Communications' 101.5
in Groveton, and Barry Lunderville's new 1450 in Lancaster grabs
the WKDR calls that were over in Burlington, Vermont for so many
more on last week's frequency and call change in eastern MAINE:
When WREM (710 Monticello) moved to 780 and changed calls to
WCXH, it changed formats and operators as well. Owner Allan Weiner
is now LMA'ing the signal to Canxus Broadcasting, which is using
it to simulcast AC "Channel X Radio," already heard
in the region on WCXU (97.7 Caribou), WCXX (102.3 Madawaska),
and the new WCXV (98.1 Van Buren). Canxus will reportedly LMA
Weiner's new 94.7 FM signal in Monticello as well, once it signs
on, and we'd expect "Channel X" to move there.
Another new AM signal is headed for the Maine airwaves: the
FCC says it'll grant Steven Wendell a CP for 650 in Raymond as
part of that Auction 84 proceeding. The new signal north of Portland
will have 250 watts day and night, aimed mostly east.
In Bangor, AllAccess reports that Mike Carter has departed
WHCF (88.5), where he was PD and morning man. He's returned home
to Indiana, and it looks as though WHCF has yet to name a replacement.
*And across the border in CANADA, Corus
is moving forward with its AM-to-FM move at CHLN (550 Trois-Rivieres
QC). The French-language talk station signed on its new FM signal
at 106.9 last week, and it now has 90 days to sign off the AM
dial. (Sister station CJRC 1150 in Ottawa/Gatineau is about to
turn off its AM in favor of its new 104.7 FM signal, and CHLT
630 in Sherbrooke and CKRS 590 in Saguenay will be next to make
Corus is making some changes in Ontario, too. Over at CFYI
(AM 640 Toronto Radio), Mike Stafford is out of afternoon drive,
and Bill Watters and Jeff Marek move from the "Leafs Lunch"
midday show to the 4-7 PM slot. "Leafs Lunch" continues
from noon until 1, with Stafford handling two hours before that
show and one hour afterward. (Charles Adler's syndicated show
fills the 2-4 PM slot.)
In Tillsonburg, CKOT (1510) is finally making its long-awaited
move to FM. Its new FM simulcast, CJDL (107.3), signed on last
Wednesday (Aug. 1) at 5 AM. The AM signal, Canada's last remaining
daytimer, will continue on the air, and no changes are planned
at CKOT-FM (101.3 Tillsonburg), which continues with its soft
And Bob Dearborn, who made a name for himself at WCFL in Chicago
and was most recently morning man at CHWO (AM740) in Toronto,
has a new gig in Kitchener-Waterloo. Starting tomorrow, he'll
be doing mornings at CKWR (98.5), reports Milkman UnLimited.
the NERW Archives
(Yup, we've been doing this a long time now, and
so we're digging back into the vaults for a look at what NERW
was covering one, five and ten years ago this week, or thereabouts
- the column appeared on an erratic schedule in its earliest
years as "New England Radio Watch," and didn't go to
a regular weekly schedule until 1997. Thanks to LARadio.com
for the idea - and thanks to you, our readers, for the support
that's made all these years of NERW possible!)
August 7, 2006 -
- An unusual weather system with winds that may have hit 120
miles per hour took down a radio tower in central MASSACHUSETTS
last Wednesday. WESO (970 Southbridge) lost its 240-foot guyed
tower in the town of Dudley when the "derecho" (a system
of downburst clusters that are part of a heavy windstorm) ripped
across southern New England. The National Weather Service says
it was the first derecho in the region since 1995.
- On the South Shore, the weekend was devoted to a celebration
of the upcoming centennial of Reginald Aubrey Fessenden's Christmas
Eve 1906 broadcast from Brant Rock in Marshfield. Saturday's
highlights included a live WATD (95.9 Marshfield) broadcast from
the Daniel Webster Estate and Heritage Center, featuring New
England broadcasters past and present, including WHDH's Fred
B. Cole (now 91), station owners Barry Lunderville, Dennis Jackson
and Marshall Sanft, and a telephone hookup with a parallel Fessenden
celebration taking place in Scotland. A gala party Saturday night
was highlighted by the presentation of the first "Reginald
A. Fessenden Broadcasting Award" to WBZ's Gary LaPierre,
and several tables full of his WBZ colleagues turned out to salute
LaPierre for the honor.
- One more piece of big news came from Entercom's WAAF (107.3
Westborough), where afternoon jock Mistress Carrie has, through
the miracle of Webcasting, become one of the most popular radio
personalities among the U.S. troops in Iraq and Kuwait. In September,
Carrie will travel to the Middle East to spend 12 days embedded
with the Massachusetts Air National Guard there, broadcasting
back to Boston several times daily via satellite phone. She's
currently soliciting phone cards from listeners to take to the
troops - along with loads of WAAF goodies.
- The big story in NEW YORK last week was Air America's announcement
that it will change flagship stations at the end of August, when
its current lease with Inner City Broadcasting's WLIB (1190)
expires. Beginning September 1, most Air America programming
will instead air on Access.1's WWRL (1600), displacing a daytime
lineup there that currently includes leased-time health shows
(10 AM-3 PM) and several syndicated talkers. WWRL's current morning
show, featuring Sam Greenfield and Armstrong Williams, will remain
in place, as will its weekend Caribbean music programming and,
likely, its carriage of the late-night Alan Colmes show.
- Upstate, the Rochester broadcast community is mourning longtime
WOKR (Channel 13) meteorologist Bill Peterson, who died Saturday
(Aug. 5) at 58 after a long, public struggle with cancer, lung
disease and heart disease. Peterson came to Rochester in 1982
from his native Wisconsin and never left channel 13, becoming
the station's chief meteorologist, a post he held until his health
problems forced him to retire in 2001. Even after he retired,
Peterson's health was still the subject of regular updates on
channel 13 (now WHAM-TV), and the station devoted much of its
weekend newscasts to sharing memories of Peterson from staff
and viewers. Not many broadcasters merit that level of coverage,
but it's a tribute to the connection that Peterson forged with
the community that it didn't seem a bit out of place. (The station's
Monday 6 PM newscast will also be dedicated to Peterson.)
- In western PENNSYLVANIA, the format didn't change at Connoisseur
Media's WUSE (93.9 Fairview), but just about everything else
at the Erie-market country station did. As of last Monday, "US
93.9" has given way to "The Wolf," with new calls
WTWF. The station's airstaff is expected to remain in place,
though it's running jockless right now.
August 12, 2002 -
- The Energy has run out in CANADA's largest market. Corus
is pulling the plug on the "Energy FM" dance-CHR format
that's been running on CING (95.3 Hamilton) and replacing it
with country music on the 100 kW signal that serves the entire
Golden Horseshoe area from Toronto to Niagara Falls. Energy moved
to 95.3 with high hopes a couple of years ago, after launching
on the weaker 107.9 signal licensed to nearby Burlington. (That
signal became home to classic rock "Y108" CJXY, which
had occupied 95.3 as "Y95.") In the meantime, Energy
had expanded to four other signals: CKGE 94.9 Oshawa, which has
since returned to its old modern AC format; CHAY 93.1 Barrie
and CFHK 103.1 St. Thomas-London. CHAY and CFHK will stay with
the Energy format, as far as we know. Corus launched "Country
95" on the frequency last Friday (August 9), and the format
is running jockless for the moment, with a full launch scheduled
for next Monday (August 19). Energy's airstaff was largely shown
the door, though we hear morning jock "Big D" is headed
to sister station Y108.
- Heading across the border, we'll start our U.S. report in
PENNSYLVANIA, where a long-dead call and format returned to life
in Philadelphia last week. WSNI (104.5 Philadelphia) dropped
the "Sunny" nickname and soft AC format in 1990 to
go hot AC as WYXR "Star," then went modern AC in 1999
as "Alice" WLCE. "Alice" was replaced by
a day of non-stop "Here Comes the Sun" last Friday,
followed by the relaunch of the old soft AC format and "Sunny"
nickname, followed a few days later by the WSNI calls. Sunny
challenges market-leader WBEB (101.1 Philadelphia), one of the
last individually-owned major market FM stations in the country;
it promises to be a good fight.
- If that sounds familiar, it certainly should; under the calls
WCTP, 94.3 did country as "Cat Country" from 1998 until
2000, when it became WBHD and began simulcasting WBHT. At the
time, "Cat" was simulcast on WCTD (93.7 Dallas), which
later became active rock WBSX. When the WBSX calls and format
moved to the former WAOZ (97.9 Hazleton) in April and 93.7 changed
calls to WCWQ, there was speculation that "Cat" would
reappear there as well; for now, though, 93.7 is still simulcasting
- And what of the third Citadel call change this past spring,
in which WEMR-FM (107.7 Tunkhannock) became WCWY? That frequency
is still simulcasting soft AC WMGS (92.9 Scranton), leaving NERW
to wonder what the long-term plans - if any - might be for this
cluster (and to note that the Scranton-market stations that don't
flip calls and format annually, like country behemoth "Froggy"
WGGY 101.3, do much better in the market than their oft-flipping
- Up in the Merrimack Valley, Costa-Eagle is getting ready
for some big changes at its cluster in the Lawrence area, aimed
largely at putting Spanish programming on its Lawrence-licensed
800 signal. Come September 8, that signal will take the WNNW
calls and tropical programming now being heard on 1110 in nearby
Salem, N.H. The English-language news, talk and sports now on
800 will move, along with the WCCM calls, to 1490 in Haverhill
(now WHAV). And WHAV's Spanish talk programming will move to
1110 Salem under the calls WCEC. What becomes of the Lowell Spinners'
baseball now heard on WCCM? More on that next week, we hope...
August 7, 1997-
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- We'll start this week up in VERMONT, where TV viewers are
still awaiting the debut of Burlington's newest TV station. WFFF-TV
(Channel 44) is now shooting for an August 31 start date, to
coincide with the start of regular-season NFL football on Fox.
Burlington is the largest TV market with no primary Fox affiliate;
once WFFF starts up, Fox will have outlets in every top-100 TV
- On the radio side, Wilmington's WVAY (100.7) switched its
simulcast from WKVT-FM (92.7 Brattleboro) to WHDQ (106.1 Claremont,
N.H.) on August 1, after WKVT owner Richard Lightfoot's offer
to buy WVAY expired. The Brattleboro Reformer reports the problem
was WVAY's tower leases on Mt. Snow and Haystack Mountain. The
leases from the state were non-transferable, and Lightfoot was
unable to strike a deal to get the tower space. Further complicating
matters was interference WVAY was allegedly causing to state
police communications. Lightfoot offered to fix the problems,
but he apparently wanted to reduce the purchase price by some
$60,000 to cover the added costs. Now it's WHDQ owner Jeff Shapiro
in the buyer's seat, offering a reported $180,000 for WVAY. In
addition to WHDQ (plus its booster in Rutland and translators
in Hanover and Keene), Shapiro owns WRSI Greenfield, Mass., WZSH/WSSH
Bellows Falls-Marlboro, WTSV Claremont, and several Upper Valley
- Moving south to MASSACHUSETTS, there's a new owner in the
future for Worcester's WNEB (1230). Bob Bittner is selling the
station to a group of local businessmen called "Heirwaves,
Inc.," and word is that they'll try to run an all-local
format on the station. WNEB has been rebroadcasting Bob's beautiful
music from WJIB (740 Cambridge), with some separate leased-time
programming on weekends. Further up the Worcester dial, we hear
the mystery foreign-language pirate on 1620 has moved to 1610,
while Spanish-language programming continues to be heard on 1680.
- Up in MAINE, Lewiston's Channel 35 made its debut on schedule
last Friday, with general manager Doug Finck introducing the
station, followed by an episode of "Star Trek: Voyager."
The calls are now legally WPME(TV), having changed from WWLA.
- There's a new source for smooth jazz in upstate NEW YORK.
Auburn's WPCX (106.9) shed its AAA format last Friday to become
"Smooth Jazz CD 106.9." The station is aimed squarely
at Syracuse, whose last smooth jazz entry, WXCD (now soft rock
WLTI) was owned by Salt City Broadcasting, the same company that
recently bought WPCX. (Salt City sold WLTI to Pilot last year.)
"CD 106.9" is operating from studios on Burnet Street
in downtown Syracuse, and it's planning to use the calls WHCD
once the change is granted (until then, the WPCX ``legal'' ID
is buried as early as :32 past the hour!).
- And down in Newburgh, WGNY is fighting to stay on 1200 kHz.
The station is licensed as a daytimer on 1220, but since 1989
has held a construction permit to go fulltime on 1200. For most
of that time, it has operated on 1200 under special temporary
authority, while awaiting environmental approval to build the
planned permanent 1200 site just south of Orange Lake. Now WGNY
has been ordered back to 1220, but it has filed a petition for
reconsideration in hopes of getting its construction permit for
1200 back. This should be a long, complex process that affects
not only WGNY, but also WKOX Framingham, Mass. (which has had
its hopes for more power repeately dashed by WGNY's existence
co-channel on 1200), and even WLIB New York, which might be able
to expand its pattern more on 1190 were WGNY to remain on 1220.
*If you were waiting for Tower Site
Calendar 2007 to go on clearance sale - sorry! As of June 1,
the shipping department (which would be Mrs. Fybush, with an
occasional assist from Ariel) informs us that the 2007 edition
is now SOLD OUT.
Many thanks to all of you who've supported the calendar over
the past six years, and stay tuned for details on the even better
Tower Site Calendar 2008, for which ordering will begin
later this summer. (You can be first on the list for the new
edition, which will be back from the printer in early August,
by subscribing or
renewing at the $60 professional level!) And in the meantime,
visit the Fybush.com
Store for information on remaining back issues of the
Tower Site Calendar.
NorthEast Radio Watch is made possible by the generous
contributions of our regular readers. If you enjoy NERW, please
click here to
learn how you can help make continued publication possible. NERW
2007 by Scott Fybush.