It has been another glorious day of work. With luck I get to say farewell to this job this calendar year. A lack of capital prevents that at the moment.

I ended up passing a HAZMAT incident on my way to work this morning. This is where the local radio scene in Ashtabula County cripples us. There was nobody on-duty locally as local air talent. Five local stations are satellite-fed Christian broadcasters (Moody Radio Network, Bible Broadcasting Network, K-LOVE, Air1, EWTN), one is satellite-fed around the clock carrying ESPN Radio, four very heavily voicetracked stations are owned by Media One Radio Group, one country is a mix of satellite feed and voicetracking, and an AM oldies station has quite a bit of voicetracking although it seems to flip its format away from oldies every couple months. There was no local radio broadcaster to turn to that would tell you that there was a problem on the roadways in our micropolitan area. We have no television broadcast slots allocated by the Federal Communications Commission to our local area.

Yes, I am leaving out of the mix above the two translators for NPR affiliates WKSU and WYSU as well as the nearby stations of the NOAA Weather Radio network. Those don't matter in the mix. The translators by definition do not originate local programming. Perfect Paul got replaced with the team of Donna and Tom followed by Perfect Paul 2.0 so the NOAA stations aren't exactly flexible.

I couldn't find any media outlets covering the incident this morning. It wasn't until the afternoon that somebody at WEWS in Cleveland noticed something had happened. I ended up learning about the situation first from news outlets WKBN and WFMJ in Yougstown first. Youngstown is about 60 miles due south of Ashtabula while Cleveland is about 61 miles due southwest of Ashtabula. Local radio had nothing. WTAM in Cleveland had a brief mention in a single traffic update but then said nothing in later ones.

This is not a healthy situation. There is not exactly a streaming solution or other TCP/IP-based solution that would make it immediately better. The capital simply isn't there to undertake a hostile takeover of one or more of the current broadcast stations to flip their format and get their programming more locally originated. Locally originated programming that is live costs far more than what the television shows WKRP might romanticize it to look like.

For now I have the problem stated at the least. I'm missing a solution. That is for another time it seems.