HUNTLEY – The volunteers at Huntley Community Radio will now focus on “bringing in the bucks” through a fundraising campaign to overcome the last hurdle toward broadcasting locally on FM radio, Executive Director Allen Pollack said.
The community radio group cleared another hurdle Friday, when the Federal Communications Commission granted the Huntley station a construction permit to build the equipment necessary to broadcast on 101.5 FM.
The group now has 18 months to raise at least $40,000 to purchase the equipment and build a radio antenna on top of a water tower at Haligus and Kreutzer roads in Huntley.
“As soon as that happens, we turn a switch and we will be on the air,” Pollack said. “The [FCC permit] is a sense of accomplishment that will now move us forward to our overall objective.”
Focused on an aggressive campaign, the station hopes to raise enough money through grants and private donors to start broadcasting by the end of 2014.
The station already has been broadcasting more than 30 programs online since launching its website in fall 2012.
The first set of donations would cover a $5,000 study Huntley Village Board members required to determine whether the proposed location at Haligus and Kreutzer roads can support a radio antenna. The board gave the radio group tentative support last year to install the antenna at the location, but members would have to give official approval later this year after the study is complete, Pollack said.
The rest of the fundraising campaign would cover a transmitter, the equipment for an emergency alert system and cable lines that connect the antenna to the group’s studio in Deicke Park, near downtown Huntley.
“It’s just a matter of bringing in the bucks,” Pollack said. “We need to be aggressive in campaigning for money. I want the community to embrace what we have to offer.”
Huntley also joins community radio stations in Marengo and Harvard as the only groups in McHenry County to receive construction permits from the FCC.
The FCC took longer to approve Huntley’s permit after receiving a competing application from a Crystal Lake resident to broadcast at the same frequency. The FCC eventually dismissed the Crystal Lake applicant after they failed to meet certain criteria, Pollack said.
If you give To donate to the Huntley Community Radio station, visit www.huntleyradio.com and click either the “Donate” or “GoFundMe” buttons.