KOYT 96.3 FM members in their annual meeting learned the community’s local low-wattage station is streaming its frequencies in the right direction with the opportunity to possible increase its coverage to more people in the Anza-Aguanga Valley in the future.
Almost 25 registered members of the local 50-watt radio station, now going into its 17th month of operations, gathered Saturday, June 23, at Anza’s new Pizza Factory to get an update on the stations progress since it went on the air February 2016.
The annual report composed by the KOYT Council of Directors Bob Giffin, Annika Knoppel, Erinne Roscoe, Flavia Krieg and others reviewed the history and vision of the station, gave an update on a location and possible frequency change and new strategies and goals.
The members learned the station had lost its lease on its transmission site that was located on private property, but with a change in a new donated location, they might be able to improve the station’s coverage and signal strength.
“Luckily,” the report said, “AEC (Anza Electric Cooperative) graciously agreed to provide us a permanent location within their distribution system.”
The council noted that since they had to submit paperwork to the Federal Communication Commission to make equipment changes. Because of the relocation, they are taking the opportunity to improve the station’s signal strength from 50-watts to 100-watts, which is the standard for small community radio stations, and because of the new location, the increased signal strength could improve the station signal to reach west of Howard Road and as far as the Lake Riverside Estates.
The council said “with the help of the FCC engineer, we found that by changing to 97.1 FM and upgrading our antenna. We should be able to improve our coverage. Once again, the AEC came through by providing a grant to finance the upgrades.”
The council, operating under the nonprofit Anza Civic Improvement League and acting as the station’s license holder, said they hope to receive their approvals for the changes from the Federal Communications Commission “any day now.” While awaiting the approvals, the station is still streaming its programming although they are not broadcasting over the airwaves.
The station’s budget was reviewed noting that although the Anza Community Broadcasting has raised more than $40,000 in cash and in-kind equipment donations and memberships, the station still needs about $12,000 annually to operate.
“However, to build a sustainable organization that will meet our stated purpose and objectives KOYT has a budget of about $18,000 for 2017 and a tentative budget of about $24,000 for 2018,” the report said.
The operational goals were forwarded to the members for the next one, two and five-year goals with two additional short term operational goals for the remainder of this year.
The short-term operational goals include implementing a customer relations management software platform to manage donor, member and underwriter relationships and integrate those interactions with their website and accounting software. The second is a part of the first goal to rebuild the entire website to provide a “user-friendly interface” that integrates the CRM software.
The station’s first year goals are first to build the membership to 100 members and its business underwriting and nonprofit outreach. KOYT is planning to host three major fundraising events to reach the operational goals and facilitate the fundraising goals.
Within the next two years they hope to have a part-time paid station manager, complete cross training of all those in operations, to stay on the air during extended power outages for as long as eight hours, to replace some of the used studio equipment such as the mixing board, mic bay and microphones and provide at least 10 hours per week of original local programming. The station has business memberships that include broadcast time and local programming that can be explained by contacting the station.
The stations five-year plan seeks a 24/7 backup systems that will allow continual broadcasting during extended power outages of indeterminate duration. It seeks live broadcast and remote live broadcast capabilities for community events and at least 20 hours of locally produced original programming. They also want to start implementation of studio recording and broadcast training for local children.
“The entire ACB council is grateful for the critically important role that our membership has already played in launching KOYT,” the board concluded. “The volunteers who have worked for years to build and now operate the station were not radio professionals but local community members with a vision. However, we hope that our sustained efforts, through incredible learning curves have been worthy of your continued support while KOYT makes the necessary early adjustments to ensure Anza Valley will continue to have its own community-based radio station for the foreseeable future.”