Midwest Communications' WGEE/970 (Superior-Duluth) has dropped Nostalgia for CBS Sports Radio and continues to carry NASCAR programming. WGEE had carried ESPN from the early 2000's until switching to the "Music of Your Life" network in 2008. It competes with Townsquare Media's "ESPN 560" (WEBC Duluth) and Red Rock Radio's "FAN 1490" (KQDS Duluth), the latter of which carries the regional FAN Network and FOX Sports Radio. (3/7/2014)
The FCC has reinstated applications for three low-power FM (100-Watt) stations in Minneapolis that had originally been dismissed because of an error on an FCC list. The Main Street Project, The Organizing Apprenticeship Project, and Pillsbury United Communities all applied for LPFM stations on 98.9 but the FCC dismissed them, saying they were too close on the dial to a radio reading service supposedly carried on an analog subcarrier of Minnesota Public Radio's KSJN/99.5. The FCC has now reinstated the applications after the stations submitted documentation showing that KSJN does not actually carry the service, which is actually on MPR's KNOW-FM/91.1.
South Minniapolis (sic) Community Radio also had its application for an LPFM station on 98.9 licensed to St. Paul dismissed because of the incorrect subcarrier listing. It separately filed a petition for reconsideration arguing that the proposed signal would not be strong enough to interfere with a radio reading service but doesn't mention that the service doesn't actually exist on KSJN. Its application status remains "dismissed" in the FCC database as of Friday.
Meanwhile, the FCC has dismissed a petition for reconsideration stemming from a similar error in Rochester. The FCC says Rochester Civic Media was four days too late in filing its petition regarding a proposed LPFM station on 88.1. The FCC had dismissed that application based on a mistaken listing showing the radio reading service was carried on MPR's KMSE/88.7 (Rochester). (3/7/2014)
The FCC recently granted upgrades that will allow to FM stations to improve their signals to Bemidji. Country-formatted KKCQ-FM/96.7 (Bagley) will upgrade from 25kW/100m (C3) to 25kW/176m (C2), while Contemporary Christian outlet KKEQ/107.1 (Fosston) upgrades from 50kW/147m (C2) to 64kW/194m (C1). Both stations are owned by Pine to Prairie Broadcasting. KKEQ's signal is also relayed on a number of translators owned by Shine the Light, Inc. (3/7/2014)
The company that's been programming a Hmong-language format on KFXN/690 (Minneapolis) for the past several years is buying the station outright. Asian American Broadcasting, LLC will buy the station for $225,000 from MMTC Broadcasting LLC, which received it as a donation from Clear Channel in 2010. Asian American Broadcasting is owned by Kongsue Xiong and Xeng Xiong of St. Paul. KFXN is licensed for 500 Watts daytime and 4 Watts nighttime, with full metro coverage during the day. (3/6/2014)
A company headed by the former president of Waitt Media is buying R&R Broadcasting's group of three radio stations northwest of Omaha. Walnut Radio LLC, headed by Steve Seline, will pay $1.25 million for "Mix 105.5" (KFMT-FM Fremont), KHUB/1340 (Fremont), and "Country 97.3" (KBLR-FM Blair). The buyer has been operating the stations under a local marketing agreement since March 1. Seline, who is also the current chairman of the Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce, was president of Waitt when it owned the stations in the early 2000's. Walnut Radio will be the fourth company to own the group in the past two years: In 2012, NRG Media sold the stations to Community First Media of Nebraska, which then sold them to Rick Siebert's R&R Broadcasting last fall. (3/6/2014)
KTFJ/1250 (Dakota City, NE-Sioux City) has ended its decades-old Christian format and is now running a 30-minute promotional loop of "Sunny Radio," and `80s format based at KZOY/1520 and K221FO/92.1 (Sioux Falls). Announcements say the station will soon begin carrying the format on a regular basis with a callsign change to KZOI planned. The Sioux Falls "Sunny" is run by John Small's Cup O' Dirt, LLC. KTFJ is owned by the Estate of Donald Swanson and had been simulcasting the Bott Radio Network with KTFG/103.3 (Sioux City), which Community Broadcasting bought from the Estate following Swanson's death. Swanson signed on AM 1250 in 1990. It uses 500 Watts daytime and 700 Watts nighttime from a site east of Sioux City, using different day and night antenna patterns. (3/5/2014)
Saga Broadcasting is buying an FM translator that's poised to move to Des Moines. Saga will pay First Ventures Capital Partners $87,500 for K230AT/93.9 (Winterset), which has a construction permit to move its transmitter to Des Moines on 93.7 as K229CC. The application to transfer the license says the translator will relay Clear Channel's WHO/1040, which would seem to be an unusual situation since Saga and Clear Channel are competitors. WHO had also been specified as the primary station on the application to move the transmitter to Des Moines. (3/5/2014)
The FCC has granted Bott Communications, which operates the Christian-formatted Bott Radio Network, a huge new AM daytime signal in western South Dakota. The new station on 860 will be licensed to Black Hawk and use 50kW daytime and 350 Watts nighttime, using different day and night antenna patterns from a four-tower array southeast of Rapid City. The daytime signal could be strong enough to reach parts of a half-dozen states; the nighttime signal won't be as impressive but should still provide interference-free service to Rapid City. Bott applied for the new station ten years ago and found itself in competition with Jet Fuel Broadcasting's application for a new station on the same frequency in Orchard Homes, MT. Last month, the FCC upheld its 2007 decision that essentially said Bott's application is preferential because Black Hawk is more independent from Rapid City than Orchard Homes is from Missoula. (3/4/2014)
The FCC has approved the sale of W250BN/97.9 (West Allis-Milwaukee) from Radio Power Inc. to El Sol Broadcasting, which plans to use it to relay its Latin Adult Contemporary-formattted WJTI/1460 (West Allis-Milwaukee). W250BN is currently licensed to transmit from Muskego and has a construction permit to move its transmitter to West Allis with 250 Watts; the community of license will change from West Allis to Milwaukee as part of the move. The FCC had held up approval of the move over questions about how Radio Power moved the translator from Beloit to Milwaukee, which the regulator eventually dropped. (3/4/2014)
One less AM, one more FM: The FCC recently granted a construction permit for a new FM station for the Clintonville/Shawano area while deleting the CP for an unbuilt AM station. The new station is Multicultural Diversity Radio's WAUT/106.9 (Tigerton), which will use 3.5kW/132m (class A) and have Clintonville in its main coverage area. MCDR is in the process of selling a CP for a new FM station in Rhinelander to Results Broadcasting, which also owns two stations in Clintonville, but no deal regarding the Tigerton CP has been announced. Meanwhile, the FCC recently cancelled Results Broadcasting's CP for a new station on AM 1460 in Shawano, where Results also has two stations, after the CP reached the three-year deadline. 1460 would've used 1kW daytime and 620 Watts nighttime with a directional antenna pattern. (3/4/2014)
Red Rock Radio has named Shawn Skramstad its new president. Skramstad has worked in radio for 39 years and has led Red Rock's Duluth group, which includes heritage Classic Rocker KQDS-FM/94.9, for 15 years. He replaces Ro Grignon, who owns 15 percent of the company and retired from the leadership role at the end of 2013. Red Rock Radio owns 25 stations in northeastern and north-central Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin. It's a sister company to Red River Broadcast Co. and KQDS Acquisition Corp., which own TV stationsin the Duluth, Fargo, and Sioux Falls markets. (3/4/2014)
Saga Broadcasting's KMYR/104.1 (Ames-Des Moines) has dropped its longtime "Lite 104.1" branding in favor of "More 104," coinciding with a brightening-up of the station's Adult Contemporary playlist. A change was expected since the station changed its callsign from KLTI-FM to KMYR last month. Saga also owns Hot AC-formatted "Star 102.5" (KSTZ Des Moines). (3/3/2014)
DX-midAMerica reports that WUPG/96.7 (Republic) has dropped Classic Hits in favor of Classic Country as "Yooper Country." WUPG, owned by Radioactive, LLC, rimshots Marquette with a 50kW signal from Champion and has a construction permit for a 250-Watt booster (on-frequency rebroadcaster) in Marquette. (3/3/2014)
CONSTRUCTION PERMITS FOR NEW LOW-POWER FM (100-WATT) STATIONS:Madison, WI: 102.9, First Unitarian Society of Madison
St. Cloud, MN: 97.5, St. Cloud State University. SCSU already operates KVSC/88.1 and says the new LPFM will be student-run, while KVSC will continue to be run by paid employees.
St. Cloud, MN: 105.1, St. Cloud Area Somali Salvation Organization
St. Louis Park, MN (suburban Minneapolis): 97.5, Park Public Radio (3/3/2014)
AM-ON-FM TRANSLATOR MOVES RECEIVING FCC APPROVAL:Algona, IA: David M. Stout will move K253BJ/98.5 from Humboldt to Algona, relaying KLGA/1600 with 250 Watts.
Wabasha, MN: Faith Sound will move W206BA/89.1 (Alma) to Wabasha on 99.7 as W259CG, relaying WBHA/1190 with 150 Watts. The translator currently relays Faith Sound's KFSI/92.9 (Rochester).
Wausau, WI: First Ventures Capital Partners will move W290AZ/105.9 (Marshfield) to Wausau on 95.1 as W236CO, relaying Midwest Communications' WSAU/550 with 250 Watts. The community of license will remain Marshfield. (3/3/2014)
Educational Media Foundation has applied to move K279BX/103.7 (Knoxville) to Des Moines, where Clear Channel's KPTL/106.3 (Ankeny-Des Moines) is specified as the primary station. K279BX is still in the construction permit stage and is not yet on the air; the current CP already calls for a site midway between Knoxville and Des Moines. The permit is actually held by Edgewater Broadcasting but is in the process of being tranferred to EMF, which filed the application. (3/3/2014)
Entercom's WSSP/1250 (Milwaukee) could be getting a suburban FM translator: Kevin J. Youngers holds a construction permit for W289CB/105.7 (Milwaukee) and has specified WSSP as the primary station in a facility change application. The current CP calls for 10 Watts from the Milwaukee antenna farm; Youngers has applied to move it north to a cell tower in Bayside and change frequency to 105.1, remaining 10 Watts. The Bayside facility would reach only a portion of the Milwaukee metro area. The translator is limited by WLVE/105.3 (Mukwonago-Milwaukee) and other existing stations. (3/3/2014)
Taconite Broadcasting's WMQT-FM/107.7 (Ishpeming-Marquette) tells the FCC it's operating at a fraction of its normal 98kW. The station says in a request for special temporary authority that its transmitter, antenna and/or feed line suffered damage in a January winter storm. The station initially used 750 Watts from a backup transmitter and is now using 2kW from the licensed site. The filing says tower crews were not able to resolve the antenna issue during an initial attempt and replacement parts are on order. (3/3/2014)
KCII-FM/106.1 (Washington) has applied for an upgrade that would add Iowa City to its main coverage area. The Home Broadcasting station, which currently uses 3kW/91m (class A), would upgrade to 48kW/140m (class C2) from a tower midway between Washington and Iowa City. KCII-FM currently simulcasts an Adult Gold/Oldies format heavy on local news and information with KCII/1380. Sister company M&H Broadcasting has a construction permit to move translator K273CC/102.5 (Mount Pleasant) to Washington to relay the AM station. (3/1/2014)
Quicksilver Broadcasting/Barracuda Broadcasting is selling its two Merrill/Wausau stations to Michael Enfelt's Radio One Communications, LLC for $595,000. The stations include Classic Rocker "Z104" (WMZK/104.1 Merrill-Wausau), WMZK translator W256AG/99.1 (Wausau), and Classic Country WJMT/730 (Merrill). Radio One will take over operations of the stations through a time brokerage agreement, which was signed around the same time WMZK tweaked its format from Active Rock to Classic Rock. The buyer also owns WRPN/1600 (Ripon). (2/28/2014)
Milwaukee's "Martini Radio" (WZTI/1290 Greenfield) is poised to get an FM translator. WZTI owner Milwaukee Radio Alliance is buying the construction permit for W262CJ/100.3 (Milwaukee) from Mary Medicus for $140,000, and the application states W262CJ will relay WZTI. The current CP for W262CJ calls for 12 Watts from far northern Milwaukee, with a main coverage area including Brown Deer and Glendale. (2/26/2014)
The price for Quincy Newspapers' and SagamoreHill Broadcasting's purchase of nine stations in four markets, including Duluth, from Granite Broadcasting and Malara Broadcast Group is $190 million, according to documents filed with the FCC. Duluth-market stations included in the deal are Granite NBC/MNT affiliate KBJR/6.1 (Superior), KBJR satellite KRII/11 (Chisholm), and Malara CBS/CW affiliate KDLH/3.1 (Duluth). Though ownership caps ultimately prohibit Quincy from buying all of the stations outright, the sales are all included in one asset purchase agreement because Granite will first exercise an option to buy four stations, including KDLH, from Malara and then immediately sell all of the stations to either Quincy or SagamoreHill. A side letter agreement places the value of KDLH at $2.916 million, but the prices for KBJR and KRII are not broken out individually. (2/24/2014)
CONSTRUCTION PERMITS FOR NEW LOW-POWER FM (100-WATT) STATIONS:Marshalltown, IA: 101.5, K. of C. Building, Inc.
Lincoln, NE: 95.7, Good Shepard Community Radio
Sioux Falls, SD: 92.9, Words of Hope Media
Monona, WI: 103.7, Madison Christian Low Power FM
Silver Lake, WI: 101.5, Lakes Community Broadcasting (2/24/2014)
Forum Communications ABC affiliate KBMY/17.1 (Bismarck) is simulcasting a new 5:30 p.m. Sunday newscast from sister station WDAY-TV/6.1 (Fargo), which began Feb. 23. The move marks the first time KBMY, which has no news department, will carry news from WDAY. The newscast will also be simulcast on WDAZ/8.1 (Devils Lake-Grand Forks), which already relays other WDAY weekend and morning newscasts. KBMY is rebroadcast on satellite KMCY/14.1 (Minot) and subchannels of other stations in Dickinson and Williston, giving the Sunday 5:30 broadcast statewide coverage. (2/23/2014)
Active Rocker "K-Sky" (KSQY/95.1 Deadwood-Rapid City) tells the FCC it's operating at reduced power due to antenna damage from a storm around Feb. 12. KSQY normally uses 100kW/521m from a tower on Terry Peak but is temporarily using 19.73kW. The station says tells the FCC in a request for special temporary authority that it anticipates having the damage repaired within 45 days. Listeners in Rapid City may not notice a difference because KSQY operates a 17kW on-frequency booster in the city. (2/22/2014)
Jan Charles Gray's Mount Rushmore Broadcasting tells the FCC its four stations on the southern end of the Black Hills have gone silent again. Filings indicate KFCR/1490 (Custer), KAWK/105.1 (Custer), KZMX/580 (Hot Springs), and KZMX-FM/96.7 (Hot Springs) went silent Feb. 13 after "personnel quit...without advance notice." The stations have all had repeated special temporary authorities to remain silent over the past decade for staffing and technical reasons. (2/22/2014)
Three Angels Broadcasting Network's K25MM-D (channel 25, Omaha) has gone off the air. 3ABN tells the FCC the station's transmitter failed and it doesn't intend to return it to the air until rules for the spectrum repacking are released. The repacking of TV bands could force some low-power TV stations to leave the air. (2/22/2014)
An alleged lack of a main studio and public file violation at KOMJ/1490 (Omaha) has netted Cochise Broadcasting a proposed $17,000 fine from the FCC. The Notice of Apparent Liability stems from an FCC agent's unsuccessful attempts to inspect KOMJ's main studio and public file last August. Cochise contended KOMJ's main studio is at Journal Broadcasting's facility on Mockingbird Drive and said it had paid rent to Journal, but the FCC says the facility does not qualify as a main studio because Cochise has no staff or equipment at the location. The NAL gives Cochise 30 days to establish a main studio and tell the FCC how it is equipped and staffed. The company also has 30 days to either pay the fine or seek a reduction or cancellation. KOMJ, which carries a Soft Oldies format, is Cochise's only station in the market. Cochise recently withdrew an application to transfer the license to Kona Coast Radio, LLC, for $450,000, a deal that was signed two days before the FCC's original Notice of Violation resulting from the August inspection attempt. (2/20/2014)
The FCC has issued two $20,000 forfeiture orders against KM LPTV for alleged public file and reporting violations at WMKE-CA/7 (Milwaukee) and WOCK-CD/13.1 (Chicago). The stations transmit at the same levels as low-power TV stations but are licensed as Class A, meaning they get some of the same protections as full-power TV stations in exchange for additional requirements, including the public file. The FCC alleges both stations repeatedly failed to place issues and program lists in their public file, failed to upload children's television reports to the FCC website, and failed to report these problems on their license renewal applications. The FCC did leave KM LPTV one option to skip paying the fines: Revert each station to low-power status, which means they would not be protected in upcoming incentive auctions that could displace LPTV stations. (2/20/2014)
The FCC has approved an FM translator's move to Des Moines, where it's expected to relay Clear Channel News/Talker WHO/1040. K230AT/93.9 (Winterset) now has a construction permit to move its transmitter to a tower owned by WHO-TV in downtown Des Moines as K229CC/93.7. It will use the maximum translator power of 250 Watts, delivering a strong signal to most of the Des Moines area. First Ventures Capital Partners owns the translator and listed WHO as the station to be rebroadcast on its application. (2/20/2014)
Saga Broadcasting's "Lite 104.1" (KLTI-FM Ames-Des Moines) officially changed its callsign to KMYR on Monday (2/17), according to the FCC database. The station continues its longrunning Adult Contemporary format with the "Lite" name. (Callsign nerd note: The KLTI callsign continues on 1560 in Macon, MO, which is unrelated to the former KLTI-FM and has used the callsign for decades.) (2/20/2014)
A belated note that True Oldies Channel affiliate WDGY/740 (Hudson, WI-St. Paul-Minneapolis) has upgraded its daytime power from 2.5kW to 5kW, improving the signal across the Twin Cities metro area. WDGY transmits from a site just east of Hudson and remains daytime-only, but continues programming online after sign-off. The station also recently upgraded to HD Radio. (2/19/2014)
Barracuda Broadcasting's "Z104" (WMZK/104.1 Merrill-Wausau) has shifted to Classic Rock, bring the station back to where it was before a transition to Active Rock in the mid-2000's. "Z104" primarily competes with NRG Media Classic Rocker WGLX/103.3 (Wisconsin Rapids-Wausau) and Midwest Communications' "Rock 94.7" (WOZZ Mosinee-Wausau). (2/19/2014)
Wisconsin Public Radio station KUWS/91.3 (Superior) is operating at reduced power due to an antenna system failure. The station tells the FCC in a request for special temporary authority that it's using 10 percent of the 83kW normally used and seeks up to six months to make repairs. KUWS transmits from the Duluth hillside and carries WPR's Ideas Network with local news inserts and UW-Superior student Jazz and Alternative programming in the evening. (2/19/2014)
Midwest Communications' KDAL-FM/95.7 (Duluth) has reverted to Adult Contemporary, the format the station carried from its sign-on in the 1980s until 2006, dropping the "96 Rock On" format that had run for several years. KDAL-FM is going simply by "FM 95.7" rather than the "Lite" and "Magic" monikers that had been used in the previous incarnations of the format. The switch back to AC restores a format that hadn't been heard in the Twin Ports since 2010, when WWAX/92.1 (Hermantown-Duluth) ended a short-lived "Lite" format in favor of Hot AC as "Nu92." Townsquare Media Classic Hits station "Kool 101.7" (KLDJ Duluth) has also been playing much of the gold normally heard on an AC outlet. 95.7's switch to AC marks the end of 17 years of efforts by Midwest and its predecessors to take out Red Rock Radio's heritage Classic Rock outlet KQDS-FM/94.9 (Duluth), with efforts first on KRBR/102.5 (Superior-Duluth, now KDWZ) and then KDAL-FM. (2/18/2014)
CONSTRUCTION PERMITS FOR NEW LOW-POWER FM (100-WATT) STATIONS:Grimes, IA: 102.9, Des Moines Metro Adventist Radio Co.
Fairmont, MN: 90.1, Fairmont Area Catholic Radio
Perham, MN: 100.3, Stanislaus Communications
Sioux Falls, SD: 96.9, Women On Fire Radio of Sioux Falls
Sioux Falls, SD: 104.3, Juan Diego Radio of Sioux Falls
Franklin, WI: 101.7, City of Franklin
La Crosse, WI: 89.9, UW System Board of Regents on behalf of UW-La Crosse
Stevens Point, WI: 105.9, City of Stevens Point (2/17/2014)
Another applicant for a low-power FM station says the FCC rejected its application based on incorrect information. The FCC denied Rochester Civic Media's application for an LPFM station on 88.1 in Rochester in December, saying it was too close to a radio reading service supposedly carried on an analog subcarrier of Minnesota Public Radio's KMSE/88.7 (Rochester). However, Rochester Civic Media submitted a copy of an email from an MPR official saying the service is actually carried on KLSE/91.7 (Rochester). A similar error happened in the Twin Cities, where four groups are seeking to get their applications for 98.9 reinstated. (2/13/2014)
A simple error has cost Carroll University the chance to upgrade its radio station, for now. Carroll operates 10-Watt WCCX/104.5 (Waukesha), which has a grandfathered class D license. It had applied to replace WCCX with a 100-Watt low-power FM station on the same frequency, but the FCC dismissed it last week because of an error in coordinates for the proposed station. The transmitter site was indicated with an eastern hemisphere longitude, which would have put the transmitter in China. In dismissing the application, the FCC said the defect was too great to be corrected with a minor amendment. (2/13/2014)
VCY America station WVCN/104.3 (Baraga) tells the FCC it's operating at reduced power of 1.82kW due to transmitter failure. The station says in a request for special temporary authority that a new transmitter is on order and hopes to return to full power of 100kW ERP within 90 days. (2/13/2014)
The FCC has proposed a $6,000 fine against Lake Superior Community Broadcasting for alleged public inspection file violations at ABC affiliate WBUP/10.1 (Ishpeming-Marquette) and CW+ affiliate WBKP/5.1 (Calumet). According to the FCC, the stations admitted to multiple late filings of children's television reports on their license renewal applications. Lake Superior Community Broadcasting has 30 days to either pay the fine or seek a reduction or cancellation. (2/12/2014)
NET Radio's translator in Columbus has returned to the air after moving to 89.7 as K209FS. The 39-Watt translator had been bumped off 90.3 by the sign-on of KGKD/90.5 (Columbus). (2/12/2014)
The CRTC has approved a rebroadcasting transmitter in Beardmore for CFNO-FM/93.1 (Marathon), which will be the station's seventh rebroadcaster in the region. CFNO-FM-3 will use 260 Watts on 107.1 and, according to the application, will reach an estimated 246 people at a construction cost of $22,500. (2/12/2014)
Youngers Colorado Broadcasting is buying the construction permit for translator K295CB/106.9 (Des Moines) from Starboard Media Foundation for $5,000. The application lists Educational Media Foundation's KLOV-FM as the station to be rebroadcast. K295CB's CP calls for 115 Watts serving the northeastern part of Des Moines, but it's right next door to on the dial to KNWI/107.1 (Osceola-Des Moines) and would be subject to interference complaints from KNWI listeners. (2/12/2014)
Quincy Newspapers is expanding to another Upper Midwest market with the purchase of NBC affiliate KBJR/6.1 (Superior-Duluth) and satellite KRII/11 (Chisholm) from Granite Broadcasting. KBJR also operates CBS affiliate KDLH/3.1 (Duluth), which will be sold from Malara Broadcasting to SagamoreHill Broadcasting and continue to be operated by KBJR through a shared services agreement. Sale prices were not immediately announced but will likely be revealed when documents are filed with the FCC. The stations also carry MyNetworkTV and CW+ on subchannels. Quincy is also buying Granite stations in Peoria, IL and Binghamton, NY and a Malara station in Fort Wayne, IN; Granite is also in the process of selling its Detroit and Buffalo stations to Scripps and its Fort Wayne station to SagamoreHill, leaving it with stations in San Francisco and Syracuse, NY. Quincy will have operations in 14 TV markets when the deal closes, including Quincy, Cedar Rapids-Waterloo, Sioux City, Rochester (MN), La Crosse-Eau Claire, Wausau, Madison, and Rockford. (2/11/2014)
The FCC has proposed a $6,000 fine against Capital Communications for alleged public inspection file violations at ABC affiliate WOI-DT/5 (Ames-Des Moines). The station was allegedly late in uploading four quarterly children's television reports to the FCC website and allegedly failed to report the late filings on its license renewal application. Capital has 30 days to either pay the fine or seek a reduction or cancellation. The company is awaiting FCC approval to sell WOI-DT and two other stations to Nexstar; the FCC approved WOI-DT's license renewal Monday. (2/10/2014)
The sale price for WTJK/1380 (South Beloit-Rockford, IL) and WWHG/105.9 (Evansville, WI) is $1.45 million, according to an asset purchase agreement filed with the FCC. As earlier reported, Scott Thompson's Big Radio is buying "1380AM ESPN" and Classic Rocker "105.9 The Hog" from Good Karma Broadcasting and has been operating the stations under a local marketing agreement since Feb. 1. (2/10/2014)
CONSTRUCTION PERMITS FOR NEW LOW-POWER FM (100-WATT) STATIONS:Carroll, IA: 102.1, Carroll Impact Educational Association
Cedar Rapids, IA: 97.5, Calvary Chapel Iowa
Muscatine, IA: 92.5, Muscatine Seventh-Day Adventist Church
Ottumwa, IA: 106.3, Ottumwa Seventh-Day Adventist Church
Oskaloosa, IA: 95.7, My Father's House, Inc.
Waterloo, IA: 97.1, Humanity's Hope Foundation
Stephenson, MI: 102.1, AMDG Radio
Alexandria, MN: 98.5, Alexandria Community Radio Educational Organization
St. Cloud, MN: 96.1, The Rock FM Communications
Two Harbors, MN: 99.5, Two Harbors Community Radio
Alliance, NE: 99.9, Adventist Learning Center of Alliance
Arapahoe, NE: 92.1, The Evangelical Lutheran Trinity Congress of Arapahoe
Bridgeport, NE: 99.9, Adventist Learning Center of Bridgeport
Central City, NE: 95.1, Central City Baptist Church
Ogallala, NE: 97.7, Adventist Learning Center of Ogallala
Sidney, NE: 89.5, Adventist Learning Center of Sidney
South Sioux City, NE: 98.9, White Stone, Inc. dba Calvary Chapel South Sioux City
Belcourt, ND: 98.9, Two Hearts Radio
Grand Forks, ND: 88.3, Grand Forks Bible Study Group
Minot, ND: 95.9, Calvary Chapel Minot
Fort Thompson, SD: 96.5, Crow Creek Sioux Tribe
Hot Springs, SD: 92.7, Joy Community Fellowship SBC
Pierre, SD: 107.9, Central South Dakota Community Radio
Black Earth, WI: 92.5, Mazomanie Music Conservancy Limited
Hager City, WI (Red Wing, MN): 104.7, Red Wing Broadcasting Association
Mount Morris, WI: 105.1, Mt. Morris/Waushara Preservation Group
Portage, WI: 93.5, Portage Educational Broadcasting
Wisconsin Rapids, WI: 92.5, Calvary Chapel of Wisconsin Rapids (2/10/2014)
CONSTRUCTION PERMITS FOR NEW FM TRANSLATORS:Millman/Des Moines, IA: K243CA/96.5, 190W, Clear Channel
Iowa City, IA: K247CA/97.3, 250W, E-String Wireless
Ladysmith, WI: W272DJ/102.3, 38W, David M. Stout (2/10/2014)
Wayne Radio Works has moved the longtime information-based Country format of KTCH/1590 (Wayne) to the former KCTY/104.9 (Emerson-Wayne), displacing a broad mix of music that had aired on the FM station. 104.9's new "Big Red Country" format includes local news, agricultural information, and CBS News on the hour. 1590 is now carrying Hot Adult Contemporary with plans to add an FM translator (K255CK/98.9) pending FCC approval to move the translator from West Point. The changes happened Feb. 1. The station cites increased interference on AM and 1590's weak 47-Watt nighttime signal as the reason for the switch. 104.9 had received FCC approval to move into the Sioux City, Iowa, market in 2010 but told the FCC last year it had decided not to make the move due to financial considerations; it kept its existing facilities but changed its community of license from Wayne to Emerson. The stations' former owner, NRG Media, moved the KCTY callsign in Wayne in 2007 after dropping it in Omaha. (2/9/2014)
KKSD/104.3 (Milbank-Watertown) tells the FCC it's operating at reduced power due to antenna damage. In a request for special temporary authority, KKSD says it's using 30kW instead of the 100kW it normally uses. The station is owned by Three Eagles Broadcasting and carries "Hippie Radio." (2/6/2014)
Wisconsin Public Radio has upgraded its two stations in Sister Bay. NPR News & Classical Music network station WHND/89.7 now uses 22kW/163m while Ideas Network station WHDI/91.9 uses 11kW/166m. Both stations changed from class C3 to C2. The upgrades improve the stations' signals to Marinette and far northeastern Wisconsin, where WPR has no other stations. (2/5/2014)
ESPN Radio affiliate WJJQ/810 (Tomahawk) has added FM translator W264CH/100.7, which WJJQ owner Albert Broadcasting recently bought from Christian broadcaster WRVM, Inc. The translator moved from 100.9 and upgraded to 250 Watts, but has applied to move to 96.9, remaining 250 Watts, because a future Results Broadcasting station on 100.9 (Tomahawk) will displace the translator. Meanwhile, WJJQ-FM/92.5 recently completed an upgrade from 25kW/79m (class C3) to 19kW/136m (C2), improving its signal to Rhinelander and Merrill. WJJQ-FM carries a mix of News, Adult Contemporary, Oldies, and Country. (2/5/2014)
The sale of Omaha's KOMJ/1490 may be off: KOMJ's current owner, Cochise Broadcasting LLC, has filed a motion to withdraw the FCC application to assign the license to Kona Coast Radio, LLC, which is also building an FM station in the region. No other information on the withdrawal is available in the FCC database. Last summer, Kona Coast Radio had reached a deal to buy KOMJ, which carries a Soft Oldies format, from Cochise for $450,000. Two days after the parties signed an asset purchase agreement, the FCC issued Notice of Violation asking Cochise to explain why an agent could not locate KOMJ's main studio on an inspection attempt. Kona Coast Radio is in the process of building KIMI/107.7 (Sidney, IA), which applied for a downgrade last month after determining that air navigation interference concerns would prevent KIMI from being operated as originally planned. (2/4/2014)
CONSTRUCTION PERMITS FOR NEW LOW-POWER FM (100-WATT) STATIONS:Cedar Falls, IA: 92.9, College Hill Community Radio
Decorah, IA: 96.9, Luther College
Dubuque, IA: 98.3, St. Columbkille Church
Kensett, IA: 97.1, Elk Creek Lutheran Church
Marquette, MI: 103.9, Claves Regni Ministries dba Northern Apostle Radio
Quinnesec, MI: 88.7, Kingsford Community Radio
Dodge Center, MN: 95.1, One Day Church Project
Alliance, NE: 103.9, St. Maximillian Kolbe Catholic Radio of Alliance
Blair, NE: 94.7, Blair Healing Rooms
Creighton, NE: 95.9, St. Ludgerus Catholic Church
Gering, NE: 95.1, Christ the King Catholic Church of Gering and Scottsbluff
Holdrege, NE: 106.5, St. John Bosco Catholic Radio of Holdrege
Sidney, NE: 107.5, St. James Catholic Radio of Sidney
Valentine, NE: 105.7, St. John of God Catholic Radio of Valentine
York, NE: 102.7, St. Mary Catholic Radio of York
Bismarck, ND: 102.5, Dakota Media Access
Dodge, ND: 100.3, The Prairie Center Broadcasting
Fargo, ND: 88.1, The People's Press Project
Fort Yates, ND: 104.1, Catholic Indian Mission of Fort Yates
Jamestown, ND: 99.7, Hope and Truth Radio
Pine Ridge, SD: 92.9, Restoration Radio Ministries
Fond du Lac, WI: 105.1, Fond du Lac Christian Broadcasting
Hudson, WI: 93.1, Capital FM Radio Limited
Janesville, WI: 103.5, UAA
Oconto Falls, WI: 92.9, St. Padre Pio Radio
Rice Lake, WI: 105.5, Law Enforcement Foundation of Barron County
Stanley-Boyd-Cadott, WI: 96.5, All Saints Catholic Parish
Madison, WI: 95.5, Lussier Community Education Center
Sun Prairie, WI: 103.5, Sun Prairie Community Foundation dba Friends of Kids-4
Waterloo, WI: 96.9, Waterloo Christian Radio Corp
Waupaca, WI: 96.3, City of Waupaca (2/3/2014)
The FCC has granted Decorah's Luther College a new low-power FM station on 96.9 to take over the student-run programming currently heard on KWLC/1240. Besides the move to FM, the change will also allow Luther to have a full-time radio station since KWLC is in a rare shared-time arrangement with commercial station KDEC, one of the last such arrangements in the country. KWLC broadcasts 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. weekdays and all weekend. Luther has pledged to divest itself of the AM station, which has been on the air since 1926. divestiture could mean selling the AM license or returning it to the FCC. KWLC carries a broad variety of Rock, R&B, Hip-Hop, Classical, Christian music, and news and sports programming. (2/3/2014)
Two FM translators in the eastern Twin Cities metro area are apparently for sale. William Cornwall, who owns the two translators, is also president of Capital FM Radio Limited, which was recently granted a construction permit for a new low-power FM station in Hudson. On the application for the LPFM station, Cornwall pledged to divest himself of the translators before the LPFM station goes on the air. Neither translator is currently on the air -- W244CS/96.7 was originally licensed on 95.7 in Hudson as a translator of Easy Listening-formatted KNXR/97.5 (Rochester), but was forced off that frequency by the sign-on of WDMO/95.7 (Baldwin). W244CS is currently licensed to transmit from Woodbury but is off the air; it has a construction permit to move to a tower in West St. Paul. The move would give W244CS a strong signal to parts of St. Paul. Meanwhile, Cornwall was recently granted a CP for new translator K288GR/105.5 (Bayport), which would reach Stillwater and Hudson. (2/3/2014)
WLWB/1530 (New Holstein), which had just returned to the air in August from newly constructed facilities, is off the air due to damage to its ground system. Owner Mark Heller says a tow truck travelling to an adjacent field damaged about 34 of the station's 120 ground radials. WLWB had been carrying Spanish-language programming but is expected to carry a different format once it returns. Meanwhile, sister station WGBW/1590 (Denmark-Green Bay) has been operating on a limited schedule due to staffing. (2/3/2014)
Duluth's oldest Christian radio station, WWJC/850, is being sold to Milwaukee-based Christian broadcaster VCY America for $400,000. WWJC has carried Christian programming since its 1959 sign-on and is operated by WWJC, Inc. on a non-profit basis, though the station is commercially licensed. VCY plans to convert the license to non-commercial status. WWJC uses 10kW nondirectional daytime but has no nighttime authorization. VCY owns 21 other radio stations, including WEGZ/105.9 (Washburn, WI), which has a fringe signal to Duluth. WWJC, Inc. is headed by president Albert Elm. (1/31/2014)
The Janesville Gazette reports that Scott Thompson's Big Radio is buying WTJK/1380 (South Beloit, IL) and WWHG/105.9 (Evansville, WI) from Good Karma Broadcasting and will take over the stations Saturday. The purchase price was not disclosed but will likely be revealed once documents are filed with the FCC. Big Radio owns five stations with locally-intensive formats in Monroe, WI and Freeport, IL; Thompson tells the paper WWHG's "Hog" Classic Rock format won't change but WTJK is likely to have "less ESPN and more local news." (1/30/2014, corrected WWHG callsign 2/1)
The former WDKM/106.1 (Adams) launched an Adult Contemporary format as "Wisconsin 106" at 1:06 p.m. Wednesday (1/29) with the new callsign WCWI. Click here to listen to the launch. The change follows the station's sale to Casper Communications, owned by Joseph C. Deschler, Jr. of Spring Grove, MN. Mornings are hosted by regional radio veteran Bob Goff and Joe Casper will host afternoons. The station also plans to carry local news, farm programming, and Adams-Friendship high school sports. (1/29/2014)
WNLI/88.5 and WPFF/90.5 (Sturgeon) have switched to national networks while their sale to the Educational Media Foundation awaits final FCC approval. WNLI is now carrying EMF's Christian Rock "Air-1" network while WPFF carries the Christian Adult Contemporary "K-Love" network. The changeover came last Friday night (1/24). EMF is in the process of buing the stations from Bethesda Christian Broadcasting, which has owned them since 2007, for $825,000. The deal also included two translators in Sheboygan and one apiece in Appleton, WI and Escanaba, Iron Mountain, Ishpeming, and Marquette, MI. (1/29/2014)
A possible future AM station in Nebraska is the only one to be included in a closed auction of 22 construction permits to be conducted by the FCC beginning May 6. Christian broadcaster Bott Communications applied for a new station on 1130 in Ravenna, which would use 12kW daytime and 600 Watts nighttime from a tower site west of Grand Island. The station would use a directional antenna pattern shooting east and west, delivering a strong signal to Grand Island and Kearney with fringe coverage as far as Omaha. The nighttime signal would theoretically provide interference-free service to Grand Island. Bott's application is in competition with one from Advanced Modulation Broadcasting for the same frequency in Eaton, CO. Only Bott and Advanced Modulation Broadcasting will be allowed to compete in the bidding during Auction No. 84; the FCC has set a $3,500 minimum bid. (1/28/2014)
Minnesota Public Radio's WIRR/90.9 (Virginia-Hibbing) tells the FCC its operating at about 15 percent of normal power due to a transmitter failure. The station, which carries Classical MPR, normally uses 21kW/168m (class C2). Its request for special temporary authority says parts have been ordered and repairs will be made as soon as possible. (1/28/2014)
Three applicants for new low-power FM stations on 98.9 in the Twin Cities have asked the FCC to reinstate their applications, saying the FCC incorrectly dismissed them for being too close on the dial to a radio reading service. The FCC dismissed the applications from The Main Street Project, The Organizing Apprenticeship Project, and Pillsbury United Communities on the grounds that the proposed facilities were too close to a radio reading service supposedly carried on an analog subcarrier of Minnesota Public Radio's KSJN/99.5 (Minneapolis). However, the groups jointly submitted a petition for reconsideration containing an email from MPR's chief engineer stating that KSJN doesn't carry the service -- it's instead on KNOW/91.1 (Minneapolis-St. Paul). (1/27/2014, corrected 3/2 to remove South Minniapolis Community Radio, whose petition was filed separately)
CONSTRUCTION PERMITS FOR NEW LOW-POWER FM STATIONS GRANTED:Keosauqua, IA: 103.5, St. Mary Radio dba Radio Apostolate for the Heartland
The following are the first low-power FM stations granted from last year's round of applications. The stations will operate on a non-commercial basis with 100 Watts or less:
Brunswick, MN: 103.5, Lakes Media Foundation
Detroit Lakes, MN: 88.1, Christian Media, Inc.
Clay Center, NE: 93.9, Wildcat Broadcasting
Crete, NE: 105.7, Crete Progressive Educational Broadcasting Corp.
Crete, NE: 107.9, Greater Crete Commercial Free Radio Corp.
Edgar, NE: 90.5, Central Nebraska Community Broadcasting
Edgar, NE: 107.1, Williams Life Radio
Hastings, NE: 100.7, Educational Voice of Hastings
Hastings, NE: 98.3, Hope Radio Hastings
Kearney, NE: 100.9, Kearney SDA Radio
Grand Forks, ND: 99.7, North Valley Arts Council
Kenosha, WI: 101.5, UW Board of Regents on behalf of UW-Parkside
Brookfield, WI: 104.3, The Word for Life
Milwaukee, WI: 99.7, Academy of Excellence
Port Washington, WI: 101.5, Port Washington Community Broadcasting
Waupaca, WI: 99.1, Waupaca Area Community Radio (1/27/2014)
CONSTRUCTION PERMITS FOR NEW FM TRANSLATORS GRANTED:Mason City, IA: K244FA/96.7, 250W, David M. Stout.
Shenandoah, IA: K286CF/105.1, 250W, KMA Broadcasting.
Waterloo, IA: K295CF/106.9, 250W, E-String Wireless.
Rochester, MN: K241CC/96.1, 250W, E-String Wireless, Ltd.
Lincoln, NE: K255CS/98.9, 115W, CSN International.
Milwaukee, WI: W289CB/105.7, 10W, Kevin J. Youngers. (1/27/2014)
Flood Broadcasting is buying a second translator in Nebraska City, with applications indicating both will relay KNCY/1600. Flood will pay VSS Catholic Communications $20,000 for K236BY/95.1, which has a construction permit for a 250-Watt signal. As reported earlier, Flood is also in the process of buying the CP for K288GS/105.5 from Community Broadcasting for $5,000. (1/24/2014)
The FCC has reversed its earlier decision denying an application from Truth Broadcasting's KTIA-FM/99.3 (Boone) to move closer to Des Moines.
In December, commission staff rejected KTIA's application to change its community of license to Huxley and transmit from a tower near Sheldahl, using 5.3kW/95m (class A), on the stance that the station could theoretically then apply for a facility covering more than half of the Ames Urbanized Area. That would've run afoul of rules intended to preserve rural radio service.
However, KTIA, a Christian Talk station, pointed out that the FCC failed to consider that any future change to KTIA would have to protect adjacent-channel KDAO-FM/99.5 (Eldora-Marshalltown). The FCC agreed it had erred and reinstated the application to pending status.
This is KTIA's second attempt to move closer to Des Moines. The original application would've changed the community of license to Johnston and given the station city-grade coverage of most of the capital city, but it was rejected due to the rural radio rules.
KTIA's move would require KPUL-FM/99.5 (Winterset) to move to 101.7 which, in turn, would displace Iowa Public Radio translator K269EJ/101.7 (Des Moines). The translator already has a construction permit to move to 97.7. (1/23/2014)
NRG Media's WLKD/1570 (Minocqua) has reverted to its previous Soft Oldies format as "The Lake," a little less than two years after flipping to News/Talk. The change back to "The Lake" was first reported by DX-midAMerica. Nine hours of the station's previous Talk lineup had consisted of the now-defunct America's Radio News Network, along with Jerry Doyle, Rustie Humphries, and Phil Hendrie. (1/22/2014)
The FCC has proposed a $10,000 fine against the owner of KZMX/580 (Hot Springs) for alleged violations of tower lighting rules. The FCC says KZMX's tower lights were out on several occasions in early 2013 and that proper FAA notification was not initially made. KZMX owner Jan Charles Gray has 30 days to either pay the fine or seek a reduction or cancellation. The FCC had also proposed a $21,500 fine against Gray's Mount Rushmore Broadcasting in 2012 for numerous alleged violations at KZMX and KZMX-FM/96.7, including "failing to maintain a management or staff presence at the Stations' main studio." Filings indicate KZMX and KZMX-FM have been mostly off the air since 2011, with filings first citing technical issues and then staffing problems. KZMX's most recent special temporary authority to remain silent expired on Jan. 14. Gray also owns two stations in Custer, which filings indicate have been off the air for most of the past several years. (1/22/2014)
Leighton Enterprises is buying the construction permit for K226CA/93.1 (Detroit Lakes) from Shine the Light, Inc. for $12,520. The translator will be used to relay Leighton's KDLM/1340, which had already been indicated as the primary station in a recent application to move K226CA to KDLM's tower. Shine the Light operates a number of translators relaying the Contemporary Christian format of KKEQ/107.1 (Fosston). (1/22/2014)
The owner of a new FM station once poised to provide a rimshot signal to Omaha has asked the FCC for a downgrade following concerns over interference to airplane communications systems.
Kona Coast Radio's KIMI/107.7 (Sidney) has a construction permit for 50kW/124m (class C2) from a tower south of Glenwood, Iowa. However, the FAA asked KIMI to halt program tests because of intermodulation interference to a frequency used at Offutt Air Force Base. (The situation doesn't come as a surprise to those who recall Connoisseur Media's failed attempt to launch a similar station licensed to Pacific Junction, Iowa, in the mid-2000's, which ended with the FCC refunding Connoisseur money it had spent at auction and deleting the allotment after hearing FAA concerns.)
Now, KIMI has applied to drop power to 13kW and change its community of license to Malvern, Iowa, since the station would not provide Sidney a city-grade signal at the lower wattage. The 13kW signal would still reach some, but not all, listeners in Omaha. Kona Coast Radio, headed by Victor Michael, is asking the FCC not to consider the proposal a move into an urbanized area because the airplane interference concerns would prevent the station from upgrading to reach any more of Omaha.
KIMI was originally constructed at Humboldt, NE, and remains licensed there, though filings indicate it was only on the air in Humboldt for a few days and cannot return to the air there because the original facility has already been dismantled. (1/21/2014)
NEW FM TRANSLATORS GRANTED:Des Moines, IA: K283CC/104.5, 250W, Saga Communications.
Pipestone, MN: K257FP/99.3, 200W, Refuge Media Group.
Nebraska City, NE: K236BY/95.1, 250W, VSS Catholic Communications.
Rapid City, SD: K272FH/102.3, 10W, Horizon Christian Fellowship. (1/20/2014)
The FCC has granted KNCY-FM/103.1 (Auburn-Nebraska City) an upgrade from 14kW to 50kW, with a slight reduction in antenna height from 133m to 124m above average terrain. The station's class will upgrade from C3 to C2 with the change. KNCY-FM and KNCY/1600 (Nebraska City) were recently sold to Flood Broadcasting; the FM side carries a Country format while the AM carries Classic Country and is in the process of launching an FM translator. (1/20/2014)
Duluth's FOX 21 (KQDS-TV) began broadcasting its newscasts in HD on Sunday (1/19), upgrading from 4:3 SD. The other stations in the market have been offering their newscasts in widescreen SD for several years. (1/20/2014)
CBS and CW affiliate KDLH/3.1 (Duluth) returned to the air Saturday (1/18) after a six-day outage due to transmitter problems. CBS programming had been carried on channel 6.3 of NBC affiliate KBJR (Superior-Duluth), which manages KDLH through a shared services agreement, since Wednesday and continued as of Sunday. DirecTV and DISH Network customers also lost KDLH programming for the first several days of the outage, but the satellite providers restored service from 6.3 when it became available. KDLH programming was uninterrupted on KRII/11 (Chisholm), which relays 3.1 (CBS) on 11.3 and 3.2 (CW) on 11.2. KBJR was also off the air for much of the day Sunday (1/12) due to a separate transmitter issue. (1/14/2014, updated 1/19)
Contemporary Christian "Life 97.3" (KDNW Duluth) has returned to full power. Station Manager says Scott Michaels says KDNW, a University of Northwestern-St. Paul station, returned to 72kW Saturday (1/11). A request for special temporary authority filed with the FCC just a few days earlier said KDNW's transmission line was damaged in a Nov. 29 ice storm and it had dropped to 475 Watts. (1/13/2014)
NEW FM TRANSLATORS GRANTED:Bettendorf, IA: K247BW/97.3, 40W, Illinois Bible Institute.
Moorhead, MN: W247CC/97.3, 1W, Horizon Christian Fellowship. Community of license misspelled as "Moorehead" in FCC database.
Omaha, NE: K235CD/94.9, 50W, Calvary Chapel of Omaha. Will relay the chapel's KHLW/89.3 (Tabor, IA).
Omaha, NE: K277CP/103.3, 99W, Community Broadcasting (Bott Radio Network).
Appleton, WI: W249CX/97.7, 80W, VCY America.
Beloit, WI: W239CD/95.7, 250W, Sister Grace, Inc.
Madison/Waunakee, WI: W258CM/99.5, 120W, Sister Grace, Inc.
Wrightstown/Green Bay, WI: W223CD/92.5, 99W, Woodward Communications. (1/13/2014)
Educational Media Foundation, operator of the "K-Love" and "Air-1" Christian music networks, is getting construction permits for five translators in Iowa and Wisconsin as part of deals with Radio Assist Ministry and Edgewater Broadcasting. EMF will get a total of 14 translators nationwide from RAM and Edgwater in exchange for settling a $462,834.67 debt. The translators going to EMF include K250BC/97.9 (Ames), K238BM/95.5 (Des Moines), K279BX/103.7 (Knoxville), W291CM/106.1 (Appleton), and W287BZ/105.3 (Oshkosh). Applications to transfer the CP's indicate all five translators will carry "K-Love" stations. (1/13/2014)
A non-commercial Classic Country network is buying a second station in Nebraska. Whiplash Radio, which runs the "Cat Country" network, is buying KNIT/90.1 (Humboldt) from Cedar Cove Broadcasting for $500. KNIT is licensed for 6.1kW/63m. It received its license in June 2013, but had earlier informed the commission that it had gone silent in December 2012. The FCC denied a request to extend special temporary authority to remain silent last month. According to the asset purchase agreement, the sale only includes the license, antenna, and transmission line - not a transmitter or studio equipment. Victor Michael heads Cedar Cove and Kona Coast Radio; Cedar Cove established KNIT as Kona Coast sought to move KIMI from Humboldt to Sidney, IA (the FCC generally doesn't allow stations to move if they leave a community without a radio license). Whiplash was already in the process of buying KVAM/88.3 (Kimball) from Cedar Cove for $3,500 and also has stations in Colorado, Kansas, and Oklahoma. The network's website says KVAM and KNIT will begin carrying its programming later this year. (1/8/2014)
Clear Channel's KTCN/1130 (Minneapolis) has changed its callsign to KTLK after a sister station in Los Angeles dropped the callsign. The official Minneapolis changeover apparently came Monday (1/6). 1130's News/Talk format had been KTLK-FM prior to the move to AM in 2011, which required a callsign change because the LA station was already using KTLK. Though 1130 was identified as "Twin Cities News/Talk," many people continued to refer to it as "K-Talk" after the move to AM and the Star Tribune has listed an incorrect callsign for the station for the past two years. (1/6/2014)
ABC affiliate KLKN/8 (Lincoln) returned to DirecTV at the start of the new year after the satellite company and KLKN's owner, Citadel Communications, reached a new agreement. KLKN had been off DirecTV since October. The provider didn't lose ABC programming because the market has two ABC affiliates, and KHGI/13 (Kearney) was still carried. (1/5/2014)
A belated mention that the newscasts from ABC affiliate WDAZ/8 (Devils Lake-Grand Forks) are now in HD. The station's news had been in widescreen SD prior to the Oct. 15 switch. (1/5/2014)
Another Canadian AM signal went silent for good at midnight Friday night (1/3) as CBC/Radio-Canada completed the move of Première Chaîne Manitoba flagship CKSB from its 10kW facility at AM 1050 (St. Boniface) to its new 100kW facility at 88.1 FM (Winnipeg). CKSB-10-FM/90.5 (Winnipeg), which had rebroadcast 1050's programming with 2.8kW, also went silent. It's unclear what 88.1's new callsign will be since CKSB-FM is already used for the Espace musique station at 89.9. The sign-on of a major new station at 88.1 was possible because CBC-TV station CBWT/6 moved to channel 27 with the digital transition (it remaps to channel 6.1 on receivers).
According to the Canadian Communications Foundation, CKSB signed on at 1250 in 1946 as an independently-owned French-language station. It moved to 1050 in the 1960's and ownership was transferred to CBC/Radio-Canada in 1973.
In the past decade, a half-dozen other AM stations in Manitoba and northwestern Ontario have gone off the air, replaced by FM frequencies. Only four AM signals remain on the air in Winnipeg, including CBC Radio One's CBW/990, which is rebroadcast on 89.3 FM. (1/3/2014)
Iowa Public Radio's KNSH/91.1 (Fort Dodge) has changed its callsign to KNSK, allowing Cumulus Media to pick up the KNSH callsign. Cumulus operates a number of Country stations using the "Nash" moniker and has, for now, parked the callsign on an AM station in Texas. (WNSH is used for the format's New York outlet and was briefly parked in Minnesota in late 2012.) The Fort Dodge change took place Dec. 24. The station had been KTPR until changing to a KNS_ callsign along with several other IPR News/Talk/Adult Alternative stations in 2012. (1/3/2014)
MINNESOTA/NEBRASKA/WISCONSIN:Detroit Lakes, MN: Shine the Light's K226CA/93.1 will relay Leighton Broadcasting's KDLM/1340 following a move to KDLM's tower and an upgrade to 250 Watts.
West Point, NE: Wayne Radio Works is seeking a waiver to move K255CK/98.9 (West Point) to Wayne to relay KTCH/1590. It would transmit with 238W from the KTCH tower.
Wausau, WI: First Ventures Capital Partners is seeking a waiver to move W290AZ from 105.9 in Marshfield to 95.1 in Wausau, where it would relay Midwest Communications' WSAU/550. The translator would remain licensed to Marshfield after the move. It would use 250 Watts from the WRIG/1390 tower. (1/2/2014)
The following AM-on-FM translators are planned, according to recent applications:
Salem Communications is buying the construction permit for translator K233CO/94.5 (Omaha) from Edgewater Broadcasting for $225,000. The deal was expected since K233CO's previous application had listed Salem's KCRO/660 (Omaha) as the station to be rebroadcast. K233CO will use 250 Watts with a main coverage area including most of Omaha and Council Bluffs. (1/2/2014)
A few months after tweaking its format to a more Light Adult Contemporary direction, CFJL-FM/100.7 (Winnipeg) has changed its slogan to "Jewel 101." The station was known as "The Breeze" before the format tweak but had been known simply as "100.7 Lite & Refreshing" since the change, and continues to use "Lite & Refreshing" as a positioner. CFJL owner Evanov Communications uses the "Jewel" slogan in several markets. (1/1/2014)
KCWV/27 (Duluth) has changed its network affiliation to AMG TV, the third network it's carried since signing on in 2009. KCWV first carried My Family TV and later switched to Legacy TV, which became The Walk TV. The switchover to AMG, which carries a mixture of family-friendly shows and Christian programming, happened sometime late last year. The station is owned by George S. Flinn III of Memphis and carries no local advertising. (1/1/2014)
NBC affiliate WMTV (Madison) switched its 15.2 subchannel from the AccuWeather Channel to WeatherNationTV at the start of the new year. WeatherNation TV's programming originates in suburban Minneapolis, with opportunities for affiliates to insert local forecasts. (1/1/2014)
The Forum: WDAZ anchor resigns, email said it was 'effective immediately' (2/12)
Star Tribune: KSTP’s Jay Kolls sues over driver’s license snooping (2/12)
Star Tribune: Obituary: Mary Davies Orfield, TV’s carmen the Nurse (2/11)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: New WTMJ-TV VP, GM from Journal Green Bay stations (2/10)
Des Moines Register: KCCI anchor Amanda Lewis to join Des Moines school district staff (2/4)
St. Paul Pioneer Press: KSTP-TV reporter Rusty Gatenby let go (2/3)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: WTMJ-TV (Channel 4) news director Bill Berra steps down (2/3)
Janesville Gazette: Monroe man buying Janesville radio stations (1/30)
MinnPost: Broadcasting pioneer Stan Hubbard impressed with Gov. Christie at weekend meet-and-greet (1/22)
City Pages: 89.3 the Current: An oral history (1/22)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Journal Broadcast Group announces reorganization (1/22)
Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier: Natasha Chughtai no longer with KWWL (1/8)
Lincoln Journal Star: Jeff Korbelik: KFRX a ratings winner, but not its parent company (1/20)
OnMilwaukee: Steve Kabelowsky's Blogs: WTMJ-TV Ch. 4 launches 4:30 a.m. newscast (1/18)
Pioneer Press: Jeff Dubay let go from ESPN in 'cost cutting measure' (1/13)
Pioneer Press: WCCO's cold weather reports bring cool national exposure (1/10)
Pioneer Press: KSTP-TV meteorologist Patrick Hammer is off the air (1/10)
Lincoln Journal Star: Broadcast icon Don Gill died Friday (1/4)
Thunder Bay Chronicle-Journal: After 52 years, radio show host signs off (1/3)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: 2013 Year in Review: TV & Radio (12/27)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Gordon Hinkley dies; was radio personality at WTMJ (12/26)
Duluth News Tribune: Duluth TV personality Jack McKenna dies at age 91 (12/9)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Badgers' shift from WTMJ to Clear Channel part of bigger game for all players (12/9)
St. Paul Pioneer Press: Fox 9 meteorologist Ian Leonard returning to work after concussion (12/6)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Jim Hall, Jon Byman leaving Milwaukee broadcast jobs (12/5)
WCCO: Longtime WCCO Radio Newsman Retiring (12/5)
Waukon Standard: KNEI's Chuck "Allen" retiring after 40-year career on the local radio airwaves (12/4)
St. Paul Pioneer Press: Fox 9 has new evening news anchor (12/4)
TVNewsCheck: Hubbard Jumps From Petry To CoxReps (12/4)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Milwaukee radio ratings for November: WMIL is champ, WTMJ strong (12/3)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Time Warner Cable lost subscribers during WTMJ blackout (12/3)
St. Paul Pioneer Press: KSTP-TV's Davis will retire in May (12/2)
Broadcasting & Cable: Burgundy Goes to Bismarck: ‘We’re Not Sure Why He Chose Us’ (12/2)
Milwaukee Business Journal: Wisconsin Badgers games move to AM 920, Oldies 95.7 (12/2)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Contested Internet television service Aereo setting up in Wisconsin (11/30)
MPR: Somali language radio station applies to take to the air in St. Cloud (11/26)
WPR: Chippewa Valley Radio DJ To Sign Off After 60 Years On The Air (11/28)
St. Paul Pioneer Press: KSTP-TV morning anchor and meteorologist will be gone in 6 months (11/27)
St. Paul Pioneer Press: A comeback for color-coded forecasts (11/27)
The Forum (Fargo): Former KFGO radio personality Larry Ristvedt dies (11/26)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: WISN-TV anchor-reporter Jason Newton goes to Baltimore (11/26)
Star Tribune: Fired 5 years ago, Al Malmberg returning to WCCO Radio (11/25)
Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel: After 86 years, WTMJ-AM to end Wisconsin Badgers broadcasts (11/22)
OnMilwaukee: Sports talker Bill Michaels nurtures his own radio show network (11/13)
Milwaukee Neighborhood News Service: WNOV expands talk radio show geared to black audience (11/14)
WISN-TV: Steve 'The Homer' True critically hurt in crash (11/13)
Grand Forks Herald: WDAZ-TV reporter attacked at Spirit Lake (11/13)
WCCO: WCCO Radio Newsman Attacked, Robbed On Way To Work (11/12)
The Gazette: Iowa Public Radio hires new leader (11/5)
Pioneer Press: Independent radio station KDWA marks 50 years on air (10/29)
Pierce County Herald: KDWA celebrates 50 years on the air (11/1)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: No trick: Martini Radio switches to all-Christmas format on Halloween (10/31)
Star Tribune: Suit claims MPR was bilked out of $315,000 (10/25)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Will Christmas music on Milwaukee radio start next week? (10/24)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: WTMJ-TV's Jim Cullen remembered for his strong opinions, and his heart (10/17)
Pioneer Press: KARE's Boyd Huppert tells a story like few can (10/12)
Omaha World Herald: Sale means Gateway co-founder Norman Waitt out of broadcast business (10/15)
Argus Leader (Sioux Falls): WNAX: An adapting 'Voice' (10/4)
Pioneer Press: Joy Lim Nakrin leaving KSTP-TV for Boston (10/3)
The Gazette: Iowa Public Radio settles suits with former regent (10/1)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: WTMJ apologizes, issues retraction for alleging MPD officer misconduct (10/2)
Des Moines Register: Meteorologist Arielle Nixon leaving WHO-TV (10/1)
The Forum (Fargo): KVRR Fox News unveils first new look since launch; high-def newscast eyed in 'near future' (10/1)