Thursday, April 24, 2008

Boise Community Radio Gets Its License

Posted By on Thu, Apr 24, 2008 at 4:00 AM

"Things are really exciting right now," said Jeff Abrams, the executive director of Boise Community Radio. "This is the news that we've been waiting for. Now we know that this is going to go forward."

We're still sifting through the FCC documents, but it looks like Boise Community Radio might have a go at a signal based in ... Caldwell.

They've been granted to use 89.9 FM for now, according to the documents.

If you want the most informed take on this, swing over to Idaho Radio News, where the blog's author and his well-informed commenters are likely to parse out just what this means.

The various FCC documents focus on Caldwell.

Abrams said the official language means that Caldwell is the "city of license." The group has to transmit our signal from within 25 miles of the city of license.

"We fully intend to have our studios remain downtown," Abrams said. The studio has been broadcasting online from the Alaska Building in downtown Boise.

But, the signal may be just what the nonprofit radio boosters need.

"It's just such a blessing that we're finally out of this bureaucratic and regulatory morass," Abrams said. "We can now be driven solely by the community."

Fundraising is the name of the game now. Money will go toward equipment purchases and operations, Abrams said. The group needs to build an antenna, purchase a transmitter and build and maintain a studio. No small matter.

"We have proposed and submitted a federal grant request, to help pay for construction funds and to purchase equipment," Abrams said. The grant is for $500,000, about a quarter of which would need to come from local matches.

He's hoping to get another $100,000 for ongoing operations.

All in all, he's expecting to need about $250,000 in local dollars.

We have great resources in this community," he said. "It's been apparent over the six years that we've been working on this, that people want to make this happen."

For now, this permit will allow them to get on the air, and show potential donors that they're a viable franchise, worth some donor bucks.

But you might expect them to wait for a big money push on radio just now, at least until Boise State Radio finishes its fund drive that's now underway.

Here's their official release.

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