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SAVAGE'S TWO-STATION TUCSON RUN ENDS

For years, syndicated talk-show host Michael Savage was broadcast on not one, but two stations in Tucson.

During the infancy of KQTH FM 104.1's talk stint in the market, owner Journal Broadcast Group noticed a lapse in the renewal of the Savage deal on the part of Clear Channel's KNST AM 790, and wrested the live broadcast from its competitor. Clear Channel, however, did some maneuvering of its own to continue to air the show on a delayed basis.

That came to an end last week. KNST (which is now simulcast at FM 97.1) is now broadcasting America Now With Andy Dean from 8 to 10 p.m., weeknights. Dean's credentials include a stint as a contestant on the Donald Trump television show The Apprentice. Although he didn't win, he was hired by Trump as president of his television production wing, Trump Productions.

The Harvard graduate began his radio show at WSB in Atlanta and has seen the program branch into syndication.


FCC GRUDGINGLY ACCEPTS HAWAII SHARED-CONTENT ARRANGEMENT

A Hawaii watchdog group failed in its efforts to get the Federal Communications Commission to intervene in a shared-resource arrangement between Raycom and television-station owner MCG Capital that allows Raycom to control production and news content for three stations.

The deal is similar to Raycom's recent contract to provide news content for Belo-owned KMSB Channel 11 in Tucson, which is scheduled to take effect on Feb. 1.

Media Council Hawaii argued that the move should be disallowed on the grounds that it gives Raycom controlling interest in two of the top four stations in the market, which the Media Council views as a violation of the FCC's duopoly rule.

But because there is no transfer of the ownership license, the FCC says the "applicability of the duopoly rule to these circumstances is problematic, and finding a violation of that rule in this case would be similarly problematic."

However, the FCC has taken notice of these types of arrangements, which now total more than 50 nationally.

"We do believe that further action on our part is warranted with respect to this and analogous cases," the FCC ruling said. "Our decision here does not preclude us from considering in the context of licensing proceedings whether the actions taken by the licensees in this case, or analogous actions by other licensees, are consistent with the public interest."

In Tucson, CBS affiliate KOLD Channel 13, owned by Raycom, and Fox affiliate KMSB, owned by Belo, are two of the top four stations.

Raycom receives $208,333 per month from MCG as part of the Hawaii deal.

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