By Darrell Morrow Feature Editor Television station KAUT-TV Fox
43 is scheduled to sign off the air permanently midnight Wednesday.
It will sign on again at 6 a.m. Thursday, merged with KOKH-TV
Channel 25 under the call letters KOKH-TV Fox 25 and transmitting
from the Channel 25 1,540-foot tower at 1228 E. Wilshire Blvd. The
old KOKH will conclude its programming at 1:30 a.m. Thursday.
"Thursday morning the change will have taken place. KOKH will
still be called KOKH and KAUT will still be called KAUT, but our
programming will have moved over to KOKH, and OETA's programming
will have moved in here to KAUT," said Harlan Reams, general
manager of KAUT.
The best programming of both KAUT and KOKH will be retained in
the new KOKH Fox 25, Reams said.
The $7.5 million acquisition of KOKH 25 from Gillette
Broadcasting of Oklahoma Inc. by KAUT Fox 43 owner Heritage Media
Corp. of Dallas will be completed Wednesday afternoon, Reams said.
Heritage will acquire all the property of KOKH in the
transaction, including the 26,000-square-foot broadcasting facility
and offices, tower and about 40 acres of land on which they are
located, Reams said.
Reams has been chosen by Heritage to be general manager of
KOKH-TV Fox 25.
Staffs of the two stations will be merged Thursday as the KAUT
station facility at 11901 N. Eastern Ave. is relinquished to
Oklahoma Educational Television Authority's OETA-TV to be operated
as OETA-KAUT Channel 43 "The Literacy Channel." It will be the
second channel for OETA-TV, which broadcasts in Oklahoma City on
OETA-KAUT 43 is scheduled to sign on the air with its first
programming at 7 a.m. Thursday with an exercise program.
Heritage Media Corp. of Dallas has donated Channel 43's
assignment, transmitter, transmission line, antenna and master
control equipment, all of which is valued at about $1 million, to
The OETA Foundation, a privately funded organization, will sign
the papers Wednesday to buy for $1.5 million the remaining assets
of Channel 43, including 95 acres of land, the 20,000-square-foot
studio and office complex, and the 1,596-foot tower at 11901 N.
Both the KOKH and OETA transactions become final at the close
of business Wednesday, Reams said.
About 30 members of the KAUT staff will be retained in the new
operation and about 16 will be hired over from the KOKH 25 staff.
The operation will be started with a staff of 46 to 47 people,
"We will interview everybody Thursday over at KOKH. At that
point we will make a determination of what our needs will be at the
Some will be retained and some unfortunately will not be
retained," he said.
He said both stations have lost people through attrition during
the three-month interim period since negotiations were made public.
"I'm hoping that I'll be able to retain at least half of their
staff to meet our needs. …