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EAS "State of the System" Meeting Held

Notes by Mike Tosch, CE KPBS-FM

About 25 people attended the November 17 meeting at KOGO with three major cable companies represented and three guys from the NWS. Jim Phelps of San Diego County ODP, June Butler of the FCC and John Hudson of State of CA OES were present.

Next RMT is Wed Dec 2nd, 745-750pm

Jeff Williams apologized for missed RMT Nov 4 on KOGO, LP-1 and KSDO, LP-2. Said management is behind the plan to never have this happen again...

The new monthly times for EAS RMT's were finalized by the group using attendees response and Oscar's spreadsheets of station comments. Those times are as follows...

  • 445am-450am for nighttime tests on even months, Feb, April, June, August, Oct, Dec. Window for rebroadcast could be 450-505am. All on Wednesday's.
  • 245pm-250pm for daytime tests in odd months, Jan, Mar, May, Jul, Sept, Nov. Window for rebroadcast could be 250-305pm. All tests on Wednesday.

Weather Service installing new "console" system, but not using the automated voices at this point in time at San Diego office. Not sure what all this means for us broadcasters yet, other than worse sounding NWS EAS's.

Jim Phelps of County of SD reports that the County is moving forward with EAS equipment purchase and installation, toward the instigation of a new "LIFE" system using EAS type coding and transmission. Expected on-line by November '99. New receivers will be distributed to broadcast stations and public safety agencies with EAS-like capabilities. I asked Jim to keep us posted on the EAS e-mail list as this new system is implemented. This was the first I had heard of a new "system" for Life, or maybe better stated, a new "life" for LIFE.

Jeff mentioned the need for an LP-1S (Spanish) and was looking to new Spanish language broadcaster Heftel (106.5 FM and 102.9 FM) to take the lead. No one from Heftel was there. Julian Vega is their CE.

Discussion of the need for an FM that can be the LP-2, instead of KPOP-AM 1360, also owned by Jacor, same as LP-1 KOGO. KPBS-FM 89.5 was again mentioned. I reported that the group needs to contact my bosses and managers to discuss further. KPBS has no backup power (generators) at either their transmitter site or the studio. Oscar, KNSD, offered the possibillity of generator power for the Miguel FM transmitter but also knows KPBS is having trouble with a new tower location for both KPBS-TV (NTSC and DTV) and KPBS-FM, after being kicked off the KSWB tower at the end of 1999. No new news on KPBS-FM's move to Mt. Soledad. Still talking to Navy and now, talking to KFMB.

Imperial Valley has dumped coverage of Borrego Springs from their EAS plan. Jeff and Oscar had a meeting with Imperial County EAS folks and got that word in August. Jeff said KOGO will probably have to pick up the slack for now, but that coverage is minimal. I mentioned that KPBS-TV and FM is on the cable system in Borrego Springs via direct microwave. Also, that cable company, Tele-Cable needs to attend the meetings and be brought into the loop for EAS with SD County's plan, especially since cable EAS begins this January. Someone is going to call them.

Someone mentioned EAS and DTV. No one had any answers.

June Butler, FCC, reported that the rebroadcast window proposal and other proposals were before the FCC this week and a decision may be forthcoming quite soon. I asked if the committee would change the EAS RMT times if the window is increased to 60 minutes and the answer was no, which is fine.

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Edited by Gary Stigall. Updated 18-Nov-98.