According to an article in Wednesday’s Daily Texan, a proposal recently surfaced that made a recommendation to sell University of Texas student radio station KVRX. The preliminary proposal to sell KVRX (as well as student television station TSTV) was presented in November 2011 by the former director of Texas Student Media (which oversees all student media properties), yet was not made public until a few weeks ago. The article states that a $175,000 budget deficit at the student media organization led to the proposal.
“Former Texas Student Media (TSM) director Gary Borders wrote the unofficial proposal in November. Borders abruptly resigned Feb. 8. Borders said his resignation was forced upon him by Vice President of Student Affairs Juan Gonzalez — possibly as a result of Gonzalez’s strong opposition to the proposal. TSTV and KVRX station managers said they were not notified about the proposal at the time.”
A Texas Student Media board meeting is planned for Monday morning and this proposal is expected to be discussed, although University of Texas Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer Kevin Hegarty told the Daily Texan that “there are no plans for another proposal suggesting sale of any TSM entities…” Although Texas Student Media oversees KVRX, the University of Texas holds the station’s FCC license.
Ironically, this news came out just as KVRX was completing one of its most successful on-air fundraisers, according to a DJ at the station.
In advance on Monday’s board meeting, students opposed to selling off KVRX and TSTV have set up an online petition that reads,
“KVRX and TSTV are at risk of being sold. Show your support for KVRX and TSTV and your rejection of any proposal to sell the broadcast licenses to accommodate Texas Student Media (TSM) budget deficits. The sale of broadcast licenses was proposed to UT administration by the former Director of TSM without informing the TSM Board of Operating Trustees. A board meeting scheduled for Monday, February 27, includes the following item on the agenda: ‘Discussion and possible action regarding the existence and communication of any proposals to sell the broadcast licenses of Texas Student Media.’
Send a strong message to the TSM Board that you want KVRX and TSTV to be around for years to come.”
Student-run KVRX began broadcasting over cable using the call letters KTSB in 1988 and expanded to FM in 1994. KVRX shares its 91.7 FM signal in Austin with community radio station KOOP. KOOP broadcasts from 9:00 AM to 7:00 PM on weekdays and from 9:00 AM to 10:00 PM on weekends; KVRX is on the air when KOOP is not. In addition to terrestrial broadcasting, KVRX airs a full schedule of programming online 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
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