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New Stations Ahead for Haverhill and Lawrence, Mass.

Settlement brings LPFM signals to Haverhill and Lawrence, Mass.

“It is the first time in nearly 60 years an FM construction permit has been issued in Haverhill.”

So states Public Media of New England Inc., in this month’s announcement that it received a construction permit from the Federal Communications Commission to build a low-power station in Haverhill, Mass., airing at 97.9 MHz.

The organization already airs content on the AM dial under Part 15 rules, as well as online and on cable TV (a studio image is at right). Public Media of New England provides free education and training services to college and high school students as well as area residents, according to its filing, including a radio internship program.

Its station application had been in conflict with one submitted by St. Patrick Parish Lawrence Educational Radio Association, to serve the community of Lawrence. Those two organizations then reached a settlement agreement to resolve the situation. St. Patrick Parish too has secured a construction permit, for a low-power station to air Catholic talk content at 98.1 on the FM dial in Lawrence.

The Haverhill station is expected to be called WHAV(LP). (See its projected signal footprint.)

“The WHAV call letters have been associated with local broadcasting since 1947,” Public Media of New England Inc said in a statement. “WHAV is today operated by Public Media of New England Inc., a not-for-profit corporation. Since 2004, the call has served the Merrimack Valley’s pioneer Internet radio station at and a number of public access cable television stations in Andover, Haverhill and Methuen, and Plaistow and Sandown, N.H.”

The general manager and volunteer president is Tim Coco, who said in the announcement that a capital fundraising campaign to pay for transmission equipment is planned.