Silent California Noncomm Set For Resurrection

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A troubled noncommercial public radio station that fell silent on Aug. 1 and some 12 days later declared bankruptcy has been brought back to life.


All it needed was a little love … Or, to be more specific, a little “K-LOVE.”

Meanwhile, an Arkansas trio has been dealt to a Christian-themed broadcast company in a deal brokered by Media Services Group.

Educational Media Foundation, one of the most active buyers in the radio industry during 2016, has agreed to acquire KUSP-FM 88.9 and its four associated translator stations — K206BQ, in Hollister, Calif.; K207CN, in Santa Cruz; K217EK, in Pala Colorado Canyon, Calif., and K237EV, in Big Sur Valley, Calif. – through a U.S. bankruptcy court authorization order for a total purchase price of $605,000.

A good faith deposit of $40,000 has been made by EMF.

kuspEMF proposes to operate KUSP as a “satellite” station of KLVR-FM in Middletown, Calif., home to the main studio of the K-LOVE Contemporary Christian AC format.

To ensure that KUSP fulfills its local service obligations to the residents of Santa Cruz, EMF will have a local public affairs representative, who may be a volunteer, available in the community. This local representative will, at least on a quarterly basis, conduct interviews and surveys of local community leaders and other residents to ascertain the interests, concerns, and needs of Santa Cruz listeners. EMF will then address the recurrent issues, problems, and needs of the residents in K-LOVE’s news and public affairs programming.

Until Aug. 12, KUSP operated as “Central Coast Public Radio” under owner Pataphysical Broadcasting Foundation. With a mix of music, arts and public affairs programming, KUSP struggled of late to meet its budget needs. At the time, Pataphysical Board President Matt Farrell said, “It is with regret that the Board takes this final step in KUSP’s long and storied history. While we all wished for a different outcome, there is no way to responsibly continue in the face of month-to-month operational insolvency and the accumulated debt of the station.”

Further explaining why KUSP was silenced on Aug. 1, the station said on a website FAQ page:

The Board, the Foundation, donors and station listeners have been aware of the dire financial condition of KUSP for many months. Fundraising to meet monthly obligations was insufficient for the station to continue operating. Cost-cutting measures, including layoffs, downsizing, and a new, lower-cost programming format were put in place, but were not adequate to meet monthly financial obligations. KUSP was unable to find funds to pay back obligations to creditors.

Given the level of debt, the Board opted to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection, rather than a Chapter 11 filing that would have allowed KUSP to restructure and remain on the air. Creditors were calling in their loans; Pataphysical was dissolved under California state law.

The sale was consummated through court-appointed trustee John Richardson.

There was no broker associated with the bankruptcy sale of KUSP.

 

ARKANSAS TRIO GO CHRISTIAN

In a deal valued at $350,000, Central Arkansas Radio Group LLC is selling KHTO-FM in Pearcy, Ark.; KYRC-FM in Bismarck, Ark.; and KHRK-FM in Mountain Pine, Ark., to Houston Christian Broadcasters, a Texas-based not-for-broadcast corporation.

A $25,000 escrow deposit has been made to Central Arkansas’ agent, Media Services Group. At closing, a wire transfer of $175,000 will be made. The remaining value of the assets is being considered a charitable gift.

The seller is paying Media Services Group a $20,000 broker fee for their services in this deal.

Class A KHTO is currently a simulcast partner of KLXQ-FM 101.9 “The Rocket,” in Hot Springs, Ark.

Class A KHRK is a simulcast partner of KLBL-FM 101.5 in Malvern, Ark.

KYRC is a Class C3 facility airing a “Real Rock” presentation.

These stations will shift to religious programming following the closing of this deal.