WUSF (FM)

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WUSF
WUSF (FM) logo.jpg
City of license Tampa, Florida
Broadcast area Tampa Bay area
Slogan Your NPR Station
Frequency 89.7 MHz (also on HD Radio)
First air date 1963
Format Public Radio
ERP 72,000 watts
HAAT 287 meters
Class C1
Facility ID 69122
Transmitter coordinates 27°50′53.00″N 82°15′48.00″W / 27.8480556°N 82.2633333°W / 27.8480556; -82.2633333
Callsign meaning W University of South Florida
Affiliations American Public Media
National Public Radio
Public Radio International
Owner University of South Florida
Sister stations WSMR
Website wusf.org

WUSF (89.7 FM) is the flagship National Public Radio member station in the Tampa Bay area. It is licensed to Tampa and owned by the University of South Florida. WUSF signed on in 1963, seven years after USF's founding in 1956. It joined NPR in 1976, the year the Tampa Bay area entered the major leagues.

WUSF's current format features news and talk programming during the day and jazz at night, and variety programming on weekends from NPR and other sources, including A Prairie Home Companion and Car Talk. Its HD Radio feed features classical music from sister station WSMR.

In 2010, USF acquired Sarasota Christian radio station WSMR 89.1 MHz from Northwestern College of Roseville, Minnesota[1] USF planned to change that station's format to classical music, while changing WUSF's format from primary classical, witn news and nighttime jazz programming. WSMR's current reception area is focused on the Sarasota-Bradenton area; however, the station's programming will be available online and on WUSF's HD Radio signal. WUSF's format was changed on September 15, 2010; WSMR's relaunch, also scheduled for that day[2] was delayed due to technical issues.[3] WSMR's sale to USF also includes W280DW, a repeater of WSMR in Brandon that broadcasts on 103.9 MHz and serves Pasco and northern Hillsborough counties; the repeater will continue to repeat WSMR, with the new classical format.[4]

Two weeks after the failed launch of classical replacement WSMR, station management came under public scrutiny [5] for neglecting to perform due diligence regarding the purchase of the WSMR transmitter. According to a Bradenton Herald article:

Arthur Doak, an engineer for the FCC, said there was no record of WUSF or Northwestern College conducting an inspection on the tower but said stations are entitled to a review of tower sites.
“If the buyer wanted it done to protect themselves, certainly they could,” Doak said. “That’s between the buyer and the seller.”

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