Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Homeland Security To Erect New Tower Home For KOME

Meridian - Dennis Erectus would be proud!

The Department of Homeland Security is coming through with the geetus to erect a new 300-foot broadcasting tower for all of Bosque County's emergency communications gear.

One beneficiary of the $250,000 grant will be Radio KOME, FM 95.3, one of the LKCM Radio Group of stations. The 25,000-watt station's transmitter and other gear will move to the new tower – perhaps at a higher spot - and a new spot in the shack near its current location west of town on an exotic trophy ranch across Highway 22 from Meridian State Park. The existing tower is 170 feet tall.

Emergency Management Coordinator Dewey Ratliff arranged the grant on a 2008 application that has been approved for 5 new radio towers in the Heart of Texas region.

“We broke the code 6 years ago on this homeland security department,” he told The Legendary. What I mean by the code is regionalism. We go in as six counties united on a single mission. That's how it works.”

Bosque, McLennan, Hood, Falls and Freestone Counties will be building new towers, which doesn't really leave Limestone out in the cold. It so happens they built a new tower using their own money not too long ago.

The old tower was erected in the early 1970's under a similar grant, though not through the Department of Homeland Security, when the federal government funded new towers for the six central Texas counties, Mr. Ratliff explained.

County Commissioners will meet this week to decide which of two contractors on a short list will get the nod to do the construction work. They have been selected from a group of 4 who responded to a Request For Proposal issued earlier this year.

KOME is a new reincarnation of a venerable pioneer of the album-oriented rock stations that sprang up like so many toadstools in the early 70's. It ruled the skies over the San Francisco Bay Area for many years, sporting promo spots from the likes of a youthful Chevy Chase saying "Don't touch that dial. It's got KOME on it!"

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