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Archive for Thursday, June 18, 1998

LICENSING ISSUE

June 18, 1998

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To the editor:

In our 15 months of operation, KAW-FM has strived to be an integral part of the Lawrence community providing a medium to share the thoughts, talents and interests of our residents, in short -- the Lawrence community broadcasting to the Lawrence community.

KAW volunteers have fought long and hard for licensing procedures for low-power community stations and as a result of the examples set by KAW and other such stations nationwide, those procedures may be soon in coming. This makes the timing of the recent assignment of KAWZ, a Christian station broadcasting via satellite from Twin Falls, Idaho, at our location, 88.9 FM, all the more frustrating.

Since we were unlicensed, the FCC had the authority to assign the frequency, but why they would consider a relayed signal from a far-away state, with programming already duplicated on numerous other surrounding stations, in an area with precious little available air space left, to be in accordance with their mandate to administer the airwaves in the public interest, is totally beyond me. Lawrence is no different than the rest of the state. FCC frequency listings indicate that over 50 percent of the occupied non-commercial frequencies in the state have been allocated to Christian broadcasting companies, many of which are translators repeating out-of-state signals. The fact that current licensing procedures exist for low-power translators, but not for low-power community stations, raises some important questions. With Twin Falls being over a thousand miles away, KAWZ will be void of any community connection, let alone any community programming. But, as mentioned earlier, regulations concerning low-power radio may be changing and we will continue to push for those changes.

We wish to thank everyone (over 1,000 members of our community) who have been behind our microphone, anyone who dropped change in our donation cans, businesses who had sponsorships, musicians who played for our benefits, everyone who wrote letters of support for the current rule change proposal and our waiver request, Liberty Hall for their graciousness and patience, and most importantly, our listeners. We hope to be back soon.

Steve Stemmerman,

Rich Wenzel,

Box 1401,

on behalf of KAW volunteers.

Pension fairness

To the editor:

``I don't get anything for being disabled,'' Arthur Burton was quoted as saying in an article about the Disabled American Veterans (DAV) of Kansas meeting in Lawrence this past weekend. Mr. Burton, of the Jayhawk Chapter of the DAV, went on to explain that his disability compensation that he gets from the Veterans Administration is subtracted from his military pension. Did you know that was U.S. law? Suppose a KU professor was struck in the eye by a basketball, and, God forbid, blinded. Would he get disability compensation from the state, and, when he retires, his full pension? Interesting question isn't it? U.S. soldiers, wounded or injured in the line of duty, who remain on active duty, or in the reserves, `til they retire, have their pensions slashed by the amount the VA awards them for their disability.

On May 1 of this year I sent a letter to Togo West, the just-appointed Secretary of Veterans Affairs, requesting to know just how many vets are in this category. To date, no reply. A copy of that letter will soon go to Rep. Snowbarger.

Also this weekend, on Saturday, a letter was published in the Public Forum section of the Journal-World from Mr. Leo Langlois, Commander of American Legion Dorsey-Liberty Post No. 14, responding to an article that appeared May 26 in the Journal-World, about falling membership in veterans organizations. On Friday, June 12, George Will used his column to lobby for money for battlefield preservation. In other words, last week, articles, letters, and columns of or about some aspect of veterans appeared in the pages of the Journal-World. Perhaps, in a some minuscule way, at least in Lawrence, we're approaching critical mass regarding public awareness of veterans issues, and therefore time to write this letter. I think the law diminishing a military pension by the amount a vet received for wounds or injuries suffered while on active duty, is unfair, discriminatory, not to mention, an insult. It should be changed.

P.S. Bob Dole gets both his full pension from the Senate and his 100 percent VA disability pension.

Preston Ransone,

Lt. Col, USA, Ret.

13 Winona.

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