Tag Archives: Issue 33

Congress Amends Communications Act and Passes FCC Reform Bills

According to a report in AllAccess, Congress has passed an amended Communications Act, which includes two FCC reform bills. These are: the FCC Process Reform Act (H.R. 2583), and the FCC Consolidated Reporting Act (H.R. 734).

House Communications and Technology Subcommittee Chairman Greg Walden (R-OR) said, “This legislation is further evidence of our dedication to advancing thoughtful solutions that empower consumers and small businesses, make the FCC more transparent and enhance our public safety communications networks. The Communication Act Update of 2016 lays an important foundation as we work to update our laws for the innovation era.”

AG Schuette Joins Lawsuit Against Department of Labor Overtime Rules

Attorney General Bill Schuette has joined a lawsuit challenging new federal regulations on overtime for workers. The regulations, which go into effect on December 1, would raise the annual salary threshold at which professional employees are eligible for overtime, from $23,660 to $47,476 a year. Nineteen other states joined the lawsuit filed in a U.S. District Court in Texas.

The U.S. Department of Labor has said increasing the threshold would make another 4.2 million workers eligible for overtime. In Michigan, this means 101,000 employees, or 2.5 percent, of all workers, would be eligible for overtime under the new rule.

The AG’s office released a statement saying that “the attorney general is suing on behalf of the people of the state of Michigan because this rule could have a significant impact on taxpayers and job creation.”

Black Diamond Closes on Northern Star Stations

blackdiamond_300Black Diamond Broadcast Group has closed on its previously announced acquisition of seven stations and a FM translator from Northern Michigan-based Northern Star Broadcasting for $1.95 million. The transaction encompasses multiple signals in Traverse City/Petoskey, and includes WCBY-AM (1240), WGFM-FM (105.1) and WCHY-FM (97.7)/Cheboygan, along with WGFN-FM (98.1) and WQEZ-FM (95.5)/Glen Arbor, WMKC-FM (102.9)/Indian River, WOEZ-FM (106.3)/Onaway and W264CF (100.7)/St. Ignace.

Black Diamond, owned by long-time broadcast executives and life-long Michigan residents, Mike Chires and Norm McKee, currently own WUPS-FM/Harrison and WTWS-FM/Houghton Lake, both purchased in 2015.

Northern Star Broadcasting’s President Del Reynolds said, “These radio stations are huge technical facilities reaching from Cadillac to Canada and Traverse City to Alpena. I believe that Black Diamond is the radio group to continue the tradition of being committed local broadcasters and will be honorable trustees of these FCC licenses. Our staff and our clients are the best in the country and we know that they are in good hands with Black Diamond.”

Black Diamond Partner/CEO Mike Chires stated, “Del and Mary have done a tremendous job of building powerhouse stations that serve their communities extremely well. They have strong relationships with their clients and the respect of broadcasters throughout the industry, especially in Michigan, which is the ultimate compliment. We look forward to continuing the legacy and the relationships they’ve built with their clients and communities these great stations serve.”

Jason James of Patrick Communications was the broker on the transaction.

Related:  Up North Radio, LLC has closed on its purchase of former Northern Star station WCKC-FM (Cadillac) and began programming it on September 29.  See that story here.

Baraga Radio Network acquires WSRT-FM

baragaBaraga Broadcasting, Inc. and Blarney Stone Broadcasting, Inc. have entered into a purchase agreement that will enable Baraga Radio to significantly increase reach and coverage in northern Michigan.

Blarney Stone Broadcasting, Inc. has agreed to sell WSRT (106.7 FM) licensed to Gaylord, to Baraga Broadcasting, Inc., a non-profit 501(c)(3) listener-funded Catholic ministry dedicated to serving the people of the Diocese of Gaylord and the Diocese of Marquette.

Tom Hornacek, president of Baraga Broadcasting said, “On behalf of our Board of Directors, we are extremely thankful and excited for the opportunity to expand our coverage throughout northern lower Michigan with this acquisition.”

The addition of 106.7 FM to the Baraga Radio Network, makes it only the seventh 100,000-watt station providing Catholic radio programming in existence. Traverse City-Petoskey-Cadillac is the 160th largest radio market in the country with a Metro 12+ population of 297,300, according to Nielsen Media Research. The region is a destination to more than one million visitors each year.

Founded in 2006, Baraga Radio has grown into a network of six stations, WTCK (90.9 FM) Charlevoix, WTCY (88.3 FM) Traverse City, WGJU (91.3 FM) East Tawas, WGZR (88.9 FM) Alpena, WIDG (940 AM) St. Ignace and WMQU (1230 AM) Grayling.

On November 1, Baraga Radio will begin broadcasting on 106.7 FM through an LMA agreement, pending the approval by the FCC of the sale and transfer of the license. Programming features shows from EWTN and Ave Maria Radio, and recently Baraga began producing two of their own local programs, “The Cross Walk” and “Called to Freedom” with plans for more local shows to come.

“Baraga Broadcasting will celebrate our 10th anniversary this November,“ Hornacek added. “As The Catholic Light of Northern Michigan, we strive to bring hope, peace and joy to a troubled world through the light of Christ. The purchase of this station is going to help us reach areas that have never had access to Catholic radio before. To have it take place at this special time in our history – well, it’s quite a blessing,” he concluded.

Baraga Broadcasting proclaims the truth and beauty of the Roman Catholic faith by offering educational and inspirational programming that aims to engage its listeners and encourage them to live out their faith in Jesus Christ.

Up North Adds WCKC-FM

wckc_300Up North Radio, LLC has closed on their purchase of WCKC-FM (Cadillac) and has relaunched the classic rock station as “107.1 The Drive.“

Under the previous ownership of Northern Star Broadcasting, the station had been part of a regional trimulcast with WGFN-FM (Glen Arbor) and WCHY-FM (Cheboygan) as “The Bear.”  Those stations were sold to Black Diamond Broadcasting, which closed on those and the other Northern Star stations on September 29.

Jason James of Patrick Communications was the broker on the transaction.

Up North Radio, owned and operated by Jennifer Theodore, already owns WCDY-FM in the Cadillac market. It also is in the process of purchasing WBZX-FM in Big Rapids, pending FCC approval.

Message From The Chairman

Debbie-Kenyon-2014_500By: Debbie Kenyon, MAB Chairman and Senior VP/Market Manager, CBS Radio Detroit

MAB membership is the best investment a Michigan broadcaster can make and, for the past 20 years, our Board of Directors has held the line on dues.

The challenging regulatory and legislative environment in the upcoming Congress will require a vastly expanded broadcaster presence in Washington and Lansing with all the new state lawmakers. Next year, expect a renewed and vigorous attempt to pass the Performance Tax and attacks on the deductibility of advertising dollars as a business expense on income tax returns. The MAB is often the only force fighting for you against the onslaught of state regulatory, legislative and economic pressures working against your station every day. With a full time legislature, it takes close scrutiny of almost every bill. We need to be united now more than ever to be effective.

That is why we need you to renew your valuable membership with MAB today.

Last year, we fought to protect you from many regulatory and legislative challenges to our industry, on FOIA and transparency issues that would hamstring your news room. Any one of these issues could have had a devastating effect on your business if they saw the light of day. You can be proud to know that we were successful, because of your support.

Next year, the music licensees, the artists and record labels have promised to resurrect the caustic Performance Tax, creating a serious threat to our livelihoods. RIAA and the MusicFirst Coalition along with celebrities (who we made famous) and musician unions will be mounting a very formidable campaign against broadcasters in the new Congress. This is but one example of the challenges broadcast radio and television will face in the coming year. Make no mistake; we will need to stand together and make a goal line stand if our industry is to remain viable!

On behalf of the MAB Board of Directors and staff, thank you for your continued support. You are the focus of our efforts; your success is our goal; and everyone at the MAB works hard every day to accomplish this important mission!

Once renewals are processed, you will receive a new 2017 membership decal and a new 2017 password to the members-only section of the MAB website.

FREE Career Education Training Solutions for MAB Members!

p1learningdark_400Do you have a new hire and your first thought is, “Training, again?!”

Does a glance at your calendar make you wish you could clone yourself? Well, we can’t do that…yet. But we CAN help to lighten your load.

Because you are a valued member of the Michigan Association of Broadcasters you have FREE access to P1 Learning’s online video training courses which are easily accessible anywhere, anytime, on a phone, tablet, or computer.

P1 Learning offers fun and simplified online training. No more mind numbing content or heavy manuals. Course topics include:

• Entry Sales
• Pro Sales
• Management
• Leadership
• On-Air
• Customer Service
• Human Resources
• Administration
• Safety & more

Did you know that 41% of employees who receive poor training will leave their post within a year? That’s why it’s key to have training delivered in a fun, short and compelling manner that teaches repeatable skills and behaviors to generate maximum results!

“P1 Learning has really created an up-to-date training module that has helped our company immensely. Anytime we can use a proven program that provides clear direction for the user, and a time saver for the manager, it’s a win-win! And that’s exactly what P1 Learning delivers.” -Patricia, Sales Manager, Traverse City-Petoskey-Cadillac, MI.

For more information click HERE.

CLICK HERE TO START TRAINING TODAY!
To register your station for MAB’s free training, contact Katey McGukin-Woolam at 816.456.8603 or by email at katey@p1learning.com.

Traffic Director Spotlight: Dustin Schwartz (WSAE-FM/Spring Harbor)

Nominate a Traffic Director you know!  Email Jamie White at ncsadata@michmab.com.

dustin_homefm_275Dustin Schwartz is Coordinator of Sales & Promotions for WSAE-FM (106.9 HOME.fm)

Dustin has been in traffic for 1 year.

Q1: What is your favorite comfort food?
Dustin: Egg drop soup.

Q2: Which Superhero would you be, and why?
Dustin:  Judge Dredd, because he’s the epitome of “lawful good.”

Q3: When I’m not working, I’d rather be …
Dustin:  Playing board games.

Q4: If I had the chance, I’d really like to have lunch with…
Dustin: Dick Van Dyke.

Q5: What’s the best advice you have ever received?
Dustin:
Be optimistic, because you can talk yourself out of a good life.

Q6: Tell us something about yourself that very few people know.
Dustin:
I run a heater in my office in the summer!

Exhibitors: Connect at GLBC 2017!

glbc17EXHIBITORS CAN CONNECT WITH MIDWEST BROADCASTING AND MEDIA EXECUTIVES AT GLBC 2017!

GLBC’s dates have returned to March! Exhibitors can reserve their space now to meet potential clients and showcase all of their new products and services!

Show Date
Wednesday, March 8, 2017
8:00 am-5:00 pm
The Lansing Center, Lansing, MI

Senior executives involved in key decision making and purchasing make up the majority of the GLBC attendees. This is your chance to showcase your new and exciting products to these vital potential customers in your target market! Whether you sell to broadcasters, audio or video producers, cable, churches, educators or corporate trainers, all are invited to the FREE exhibit hall at GLBC.

GLBC BENEFITS

  • Centrally located in Lansing, MI
    This popular conference and expo is only a few hours’ drive for most of your current and potential Great Lakes media customers; meaning more qualified leads and more potential customers.
  • You win by choosing GLBC!
    Attending an established conference like the GLBC will keep your company and products top of mind when buying decisions are made.
  • Not all the action is on the Exhibit floor
    This all-inclusive show offers many networking opportunities for one-to-one interaction with decision makers. Our famous “Beer and Bull” opening reception, breakfast and breaks in the exhibit hall are all included.

Find more information and register HERE.

If you have any questions, please contact Rachel Krause at the MAB, krause@michmab.com or 517-484-7444.

NAB Show New York Announced

nabsny_350The National Association of Broadcasters has announced NAB Show New York, scheduled for November 9-10 in New York City.
Formerly Content and Communications World, NAB Show New York delivers compelling content, exciting speakers, and all the latest in broadcast technology close to home.

NAB Show New York leverages the strength and reach of NAB Show (Las Vegas), while adding a content focus unique to the thriving Northeast media and entertainment market.

The exhibit floor will feature 300 exhibiting companies and 60+ sessions. NAB Show New York represents a chance to dive more deeply into the major issues shaping our industry, including:

– 4K: hands-on workshops
– ATSC 3.0: impact on your business
– Advertising: next-gen technologies
– Business and Investment: choosing what’s best for you
– Drones: exploring what’s next
– Live Productions: case study out of NYC
– News: live distribution
– Production and Post: building the bridge
– VR: understand the practical use

The MAB, in partnership with NAB, is pleased to extend to its members a Core Package Pass discounted to $25. The Core Package includes access to all NAB Show New York and InfoComm Connections Sessions within the Inspiration Stages, Exhibits and Exhibitor Info sessions. To register and auto-add the discount code, click here.

To learn more about NAB Show New York, including other available registration packages, visit NABShowNY.com.