BOONVILLE -- We're a bit late with this one: fans of the oldies music format on WBRV (900AM) can now get their classic hits fix on the FM side of the dial. It's all thanks to Flack Broadcasting's planned acquisition of an FM translator signal no longer needed by North Country Public Radio.
We missed the mention in the February 15th edition of NorthEast Radio Watch by Scott Fybush. At that time, he reported that Flack Broadcasting was in the process of "building a new tower on Jackson Hill for the 105.9 signal." Now, a CNYRadio.com reader from that area confirms the new FM translator is now live and simulcasting WBRV programming.
The translator, which originally broadcast at 91.7FM, was previously owned by St. Lawrence University as a satellite for the "North Country Public Radio" service. When NCPR got approval to build a full-power station at 91.7 (WXLB), the translator was moved up to 105.9. The translator continues to use the same call sign (W219CT) as it did at 91.7 -- even though 105.9FM is equal to FCC channel 290. (Translators usually include their channel assignment within their call sign.) We'll also note FCC records still list SLU as the owner, not Flack; so while Flack reportedly has control of the signal, it appears ownership is still being transferred.
The new translator could give WBRV a better shot at attracting listeners around the clock: the parent signal at 900AM is authorized to broadcast at 1,000 watts during the day, but only 52 watts at night. W219CT is authorized for 250 watts, which, according to FCC Contour Maps, will allow the station to strongly cover much of northeastern Oneida County, and a portion of southern Lewis County. Our reader says he actually picked up the station six miles north of Lowville.
Thanks again to an observant CNYRadio.com reader who emailed us after hearing the new signal on the air. Anytime you notice something new on the local radio scene, drop a line through our contact form or if you prefer regular email, firstname.lastname@example.org will do it.