The vote coming next week will have no binding effect on either the buyer or seller – much less the FCC – but the San Francisco Board of Supervisors will take up a resolution which would put them on record as opposing the sale of the license for KUSF-FM by the University of San Francisco (USF).
Despite its name, the University has no connection to the local government. Rather, it is a Catholic university, run by the Jesuit order. The school has already LMA’d the 90.3 MHz signal to Classical Public Radio Network, owned primarily by the University of Southern California, which has moved the programming of former commercial Classical KDFC-FM to the non-commercial band. The actual sale of the license for $3.75 million is pending.
One alumnus of is Ross Mirkarimi (pictured), who is now the elected City Supervisor representing the district that includes the campus. He is none too pleased with the move by his alma mater to sell the radio license, calling it a “grave error” and lamenting it as a “travesty” that the school did not reach out to the community before cutting the sale deal.
Mirkarimi has introduced a resolution which hails the 30-year-plus legacy of KUSF as an outlet for local musicians ignored by commercial radio stations. “Many now-famous musical acts first gained radio exposure on KUSF, including Depeche Mode, Metallica, The B-52’s, U2, R.E.M., the White Stripes, and Kronos Quartet, in fact, KUSF has received one double platinum and seven gold record awards from the recording industry – one of the very few college stations in the country ever to be so recognized,” reads part of the resolution. It goes on to claim that the flip from a “diverse, community-serving format” to an all-music one violates the FCC requirement that licensees must serve the “public interest, convenience and necessity” and calls for the sale to be rejected. A vote by the full Board of Supervisors is expected next week.
RBR-TVBR observation: While the former Alternative format has its fans, the new Classical format is not without its admirers – and it is certain that KDFC is not going back to the commercial FM slot where Entercom is now airing Classic Rock. Do Facebook fans mean much? If so, Save KUSF has 6,501 while KDFC has 5,328.