KTAZ, virtual channel 39 (UHF digital channel 29), is a Telemundo owned-and-operated television station licensed to Phoenix, Arizona, United States. The station is owned by the NBC Owned Television Stations subsidiary of NBCUniversal (itself a subsidiary of Comcast). KTAZ's studios are located on South 33rd Place in Phoenix, and its transmitter is located atop South Mountain on the city's south side.

History[edit | edit source]

In 1986, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) designated VHF channel 11 as a commercial allotment for Holbrook. The allotment lay vacant until April 1996, when Channel 11 LLC applied for a permit to build a TV station. The application was granted on January 23, 1998, and in March, Channel 11 requested KBCZ for its call sign., In August 2000, Channel 11 struck an agreement to sell the station to Venture Technologies Group, LLC, which was approved in November and consummated in December. Venture immediately changed the call letters to KPHZ and requested a waiver of the Main Studio Rule so that they could operate their new station out of existing facilities in Phoenix, used for stations KPHZ-LP (channel 58, now KDTP-LP channel 48) and KPSW-LP (channel 41, now KPDF-CD), instead of having the added expense of studio facilities in Holbrook. Venture signed the station on air in January 2001 as an affiliate of the home shopping channel America's Collectibles Network (ACN)—now Jewelry Television (JTV). The FCC granted a license to KPHZ on December 5, 2001. The station was never profitable, and in April 2002, shortly after its acquisition by NBC, Telemundo reached an agreement with Venture to acquire KPHZ, along with Venture's two Phoenix low power stations. The FCC granted the request on August 23 and the purchase was consummated on September 26. KPHZ was Telemundo's second full-power station in Arizona, after KHRR in Tucson), but it continued to air ACN programming until July 2003, when it switched to Telemundo programming.

License swap[edit | edit source]

By 2004, NBCUniversal concluded that in a small town like Holbrook (which had a population of 4,917, according to the 2000 U.S. Census), KPHZ was losing money and would likely have to be shut down. At the same time, the company had determined that its Phoenix-based Class A LPTV station, KDRX-CA (channel 48, now KDPH-LP), could not adequately compete with Univision's full-power station KTVW-TV.

NBCUniversal reached an agreement with the Daystar Television Network, and the two broadcasters together filed an application with the FCC to move the KPHZ license from Holbrook to Phoenix, where it would broadcast on channel 39. Daystar's KDTP license would move from Phoenix to Holbrook, broadcasting on channel 11. It was an unusual and complicated request that involved not only a swap of cities of license and frequencies, but would also require removing the non-commercial reservation from channel 39 in Phoenix and creating a non-commercial reservation on channel 11 in Holbrook. Holbrook already had a non-commercial allocation on channel 18 which had never been built, and most likely never would be. In addition, NBCUniversal would transfer KDRX-CA and KPHZ-LP to Daystar, preserving a Daystar outlet in Phoenix.

The Federal Communications Commission is extremely reluctant to remove a non-commercial reservation from a market, and naturally, Univision objected to the proposal, but in October 2005, the FCC agreed to allow the switch, saying that the benefit of having competing full-power Spanish-language television stations in the Phoenix market outweighed the loss of the non-commercial reservation. In April 2006, the FCC granted construction permits to move the licenses.

On May 27, 2006, the KTAZ call letters were moved to the channel 39 license. There were a few complications with the move, requiring newly named KTAZ to move to a different broadcast tower. KTAZ temporarily kept the Daystar programming and the Telemundo programming remained on channel 11, which became KDTP-CA (now KDPH-LP), while KTAZ's permanent transmitter facilities were being constructed; the move was completed on July 23, 2006, and on August 9, KTAZ resumed carrying Telemundo programming, and Daystar programming began airing on KDTP-CA. The FCC licensed the changes to KTAZ on November 7, 2006.

TV stations in Arizona
Telemundo affiliates UniMás affiliates Univision affiliates Azteca affiliates Other stations
KTAZ, Phoenix KFTU, Douglas KTVW, Phoenix KMOH/KEJR-LD, Kingman/Phoenix KYUM-LD, Yuma
KHRR, Tucson KFPH, Flagstaff KUVE, Tucson KUDF-LP, Tucson KSWT-DT3, Yuma
KPDF-CD, Phoenix
K38IZ-D, Phoenix
KVPA-LD, Phoenix
KTTU-DT2, Phoenix
KPHE-LD, Phoenix
KFPB-LD, Globe
TV stations in Phoenix metropolitan area
KTVK 3 (Ind)
KAZT 7 (Ind)
KSAZ 10 (Fox)
KDTP 11 (Daystar)
KFPH 13 (UMas)
K18DD-D 18 (Evine)
K19FD 19 (Hope)
K18JL-D 25 (AFTV)
KKAX-LP 36 (Youtoo)
K38IZ-D 38 (Ind)
KPDF-CD 41 (Rel)
KDPH-LP 48 (Daystar)
KFPB-LD 50 (Nuestra)
KPPX 51 (Ion)
KASW 61 (CW)
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