Scripps plans to buy KMCI-TV in Lawrence, Kansas

Wed, December 08, 1999 by Mark Kroeger

CINCINNATI – The E.W. Scripps Company announced today that it intends to acquire television station KMCI-Channel 38 in Lawrence, Kansas, subject to approval from the Federal Communications Commission.Scripps has filed an application with the FCC to acquire KMCI under revised rules that allow, under certain conditions, single ownership of two television stations in a designated market. KMCI broadcasts in the Kansas City designated market, where Scripps operates the NBC affiliate, KSHB – Channel 41. KMCI’s signal also reaches into the Topeka market.Since 1996, Scripps has programmed KMCI under a local marketing agreement with its owner, Miller Broadcasting Inc. The agreement gives Scripps the option to acquire KMCI if FCC rules allow. Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.“The changing regulatory environment presents us with the opportunity to strengthen our presence in the Kansas City television market,” said James M. Hart, senior vice president/broadcast television for Scripps. “The relationship with KMCI has proved to be successful for Scripps, so taking the next step to acquire the station makes sense.”Under the terms of the local marketing agreement, Scripps has provided KMCI’s programming, sells all of its advertising time and provides other business and administrative functions. “We’ve had a terrific relationship with Scripps the past three years and I’m pleased to be passing our station along to a company with such a rich television broadcasting tradition,” said Monte Miller, president of Miller Broadcasting and general manager of KMCI.The E.W. Scripps Company operates 19 daily newspapers; nine network-affiliated television stations; three TV networks, Home & Garden Television, the Food Network and Do it Yourself; and a TV programmer, Scripps Productions. The company also operates United Media, a worldwide syndicator and licensor of news features and comics; the Scripps Howard News Service; and publishes independent Yellow Pages directories. Scripps operates 31 revenue-producing Web sites, including hgtv.com, foodtv.com, diynet.com and comics.com.