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Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

Why is the KSER Foundation launching a second public radio station?
• KXIR will help meet the public need for more community-based, commercial-free radio and provide a much-needed alternative to traditional commercial media and the programming of large public media.
• KXIR will expand the ability of the KSER Foundation to advance the common good in our community through public radio and other services dedicated to arts, ideas and civic engagement.
• By owning and operating KXIR, the KSER Foundation retains local control of the last full-powered signal in the North Puget Sound, ensuring programming will be influenced by the communities KXIR serves.

Where is this second station?
• A new tower designed to transmit a 1000-watt directional signal is being constructed on a small 70' x 70' clearing in the middle of a heavily wooded lot in Greenbank on Whidbey Island.
• The tower will be 180 feet high and barely visible above the surrounding tree line. Its small size does not require a beacon light.
• The KSER Foundation is making every effort to be respectful of the few neighbors in the sparsely populated area, so we are maintaining the wooded landscape and planting fast-growing Leyland Cypress around the security fence at the base of the tower, once construction is complete.
• KXIR will be licensed to broadcast from Freeland, Washington.
• KXIR will share the KSER studio in downtown Everett where production capabilities will be expanded to meet the growing needs.

Who will be served by KXIR?
• The 89.9 broadcast signal will reach more than 712,000 people throughout Snohomish and Island counties, stretching from Stanwood and Marysville in the north to Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood, and Edmonds in the south and farther west to Langley, Oak Harbor, and Port Townsend.
• In addition, KXIR will help bring independent public radio to residents who can’t receive a clear KSER signal due to geographic impediments.
• Combined, 90.7 KSER and 89.9 KXIR will provide local, commercial-free radio to more than 1.3 million residents within an approximate range of 14,000 square miles in Snohomish and Island counties and parts of King, Skagit and Jefferson counties.

What will be heard on KXIR?
• KXIR will broadcast a simulcast of KSER for up to the first year until distinct formats are established for each station.
• The current plans are for KXIR to focus on music, culture and education and KSER to focus on news, information and public affairs.
• The KSER Foundation will continue to seek community input on how KXIR and KSER can best serve the community, and it will measure community engagement on an ongoing basis to ensure program success.

When will KXIR begin broadcasting?
• In order to meet the requirements of the Federal Communication Commission, KXIR must be on the air by Nov. 30, 2013.
• The KSER Foundation anticipates exceeding that goal.

What will this project cost and how will it be funded?
• The KSER Foundation estimates $510,000 is needed for:
o A tower, transmitter and initial operating expenses for KXIR;
o Improvements to the current KSER studio in Everett, which will serve as the broadcast headquarters for KXIR;
o Internet and technology capabilities to establish KXIR’s service.
• To raise the $510,000, the KSER Foundation is launching Signal for the Sound – a three-year campaign that will seek funding through grants and donations from individuals, organizations and businesses. A campaign committee is already at work planning community outreach to achieve the funding goal.
• A feasibility study conducted by the KSER Foundation found strong community support for KXIR.
• To help strengthen the financial viability of the KSER Foundation, the organization has established an endowment fund from the sale of a tower previously used for rental income. Although designed to keep the KSER Foundation strong in the future, the endowment fund can be used for short-term borrowing to meet KXIR construction needs until campaign funds are received.

How did the KSER Foundation get to this point?
As part of our ongoing efforts to serve the common good with wise stewardship of the public airwaves, the KSER Foundation conducted community meetings and interviews with leaders and listeners from 2008 through 2010. As a result, expanding public radio service has been a strategic goal of the KSER Foundation. Here are key events that led to the construction of the KXIR tower.
• November 2010: The KSER Foundation receives approval from the FCC to build and launch 89.9 FM, the last available public radio frequency in the north Puget Sound region.
• 2010 through 2012: The KSER Foundation proceeds with due diligence to analyze the project feasibility and review KSER Foundation’s ability to accomplish the project goals. A committee of staff, board and community members is devoted to the construction project and another team leads funding plans that include the feasibility study, launch of a comprehensive campaign and the establishment of an endowment fund to strengthen the long-term viability of the KSER Foundation.
• Early 2013: The KSER Foundation seeks additional community input about the expansion of independent public radio and builds awareness of KXIR.
• May 2013: Signal for the Sound Campaign begins with its first campaign meeting and early campaign commitments are received.
• August 2013: Preparation for the construction of the KXIR broadcast tower begins on Whidbey Island.

How can I get involved or receive more information?
Call 425-303-9070 and ask for Station Manager Tom Clendening or Development Director Shayne Kraemer or send an email to or