KMTR is the NBC and The CW affiliate television station serving the Eugene/Springfield, Oregon designated market area. The station is owned by Roberts Media, LLC, with certain services provided by Sinclair Broadcast Group. The station reaches additional viewers in central and western Oregon via co-owned full-powered satellite stations KMCB digital channel 22 (Coos Bay) and KTCW digital channel 45 (Roseburg). The two stations share studios located on International Court in Springfield, and its transmitter is located on Coburg Ridge.
KMTR started in 1982 as a UHF station carrying NBC programming. KMTR began broadcasting after former NBC affiliate KVAL-TV began selectively omitting certain NBC prime time broadcasts from its evening lineup, replacing them with alternate programming from rival network, CBS. The resulting conflict over this programming decision preceded the introduction of KMTR to the media market, and a switch of KVAL affiliation away from NBC to CBS. The Columbia Empire Broadcasting Corporation of Yakima, Washington acquired the station in 1984.
In late 1995, the station was bought by the Wicks Broadcast Group of New York City. In March 1996, Wicks Broadcast Group named Brian Benschoter the station’s new GM; he started shaking things up immediately for the third-place Eugene-based station. On May 21, 1996 he abruptly fired longtime sports anchors Brian Lamb and Steve Freedman without warning. Lamb, an 11.5 year veteran of the station, and Freedman an 8.5 year employee introduced the “Prep Athlete of the Week” segment that became an immensely popular weekly honor. The award is still considered by locals as the top media honor one can receive for high school sports in the Eugene/Springfield area. Lamb and Freedman were replaced by Joe Giansante a new addition to the KMTR family and sports talk radio host on KUGN AM 590.
In March 1999, Wicks sold KMTR to the Ackerley Group, who merged with Clear Channel Communications in 2001. KMTR was named "Station of the Year" for 2005 by the Oregon Association of Broadcasters (OAB).
In February 2006, the two satellite stations, KMTZ and KMTX, changed their call letters to KUCW and KTCW, respectively.
In September 2006, KMTR added The CW on a digital subchannel, replacing the cable-only KZWB.
On April 20, 2007, Clear Channel entered into an agreement to sell its entire television stations group to Newport Television, a unit of Providence Equity Partners. The deal closed on March 14, 2008.
In 2012, Newport Television entered into agreements to sell most of its stations to the Nexstar Broadcasting Group, Sinclair Broadcast Group, Cox Media Group and Shield Media, LLC. It would not be until November 26, 2012, when Newport announced a sale to Fisher Communications. Because Fisher already owns KVAL-TV, Fisher assigned the rights to acquire the FCC license to KMTR Television, LLC, which is wholly owned by Roberts Media, LLC. Roberts Media is wholly owned by veteran broadcaster Larry Roberts. KMTR Television, LLC then entered into a Shared Services Agreement with Fisher. WHAM-TV in Rochester, New York was the last remaining station to be owned by Newport Television as of November 2012 that had not yet been sold, until December 3 when it was announced that Sinclair would acquire the non-license assets of WHAM. While still awaiting FCC approval of the sale to KMTR Television, LLC, on April 11, 2013, Fisher announced that it would sell its properties, including KVAL and the planned Share Services Agreement with KMTR, to Sinclair. As of November 2012, KMTR remained the only "Big Four" network-affiliated station in Western Oregon to continue to produce its local newscasts in pillarboxed 4:3 standard definition. It is unknown when KMTR will begin airing its local newscasts in 16:9 widescreen or in high definition (KVAL has already been airing its local newscasts in 16:9 widescreen, though not true high definition). The FCC granted its approval of KMTR to KMTR Television, LLC on April 24 and the sale was consummated June 3, 2013. On February 19, KMTR was the sole Newport Television property, until June 1 when it was the last station to have its sale completed. After the completion of the sale, certain operations and personnel changes were made. The sale of the Fisher stations to Sinclair was completed on August 8, 2013.
|Station||City of license||Channels|
|First air date||Former callsigns||ERP|
|Facility ID||Transmitter Coordinates|
|KMCB||Coos Bay||22 (UHF)||July 8, 1991||KMTZ (1991-2006)|
|10 kW||179 m (587 ft)||35183|
|KTCW||Roseburg||45 (UHF)||April 19921||KMTX-TV (1992-2006)||12 kW||109 m (358 ft)||35187|
- 1. The Broadcasting and Cable Yearbook says KTCW signed on April 8, while the Television and Cable Factbook says it signed on April 20.
The station's digital signal is multiplexed:
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|16.1||1080i||16:9||KMTR-HD||Main KMTR programming / NBC|
KMTR shut down its analog signal, over UHF channel 16, on February 17, 2009, the original target date on which full-power television stations in the United States were to transition from analog to digital broadcasts under federal mandate (which was later pushed back to June 12, 2009). The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 17. Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as its former UHF analog channel 16.
The stations are rebroadcast on the following translators:
- Channel 11 Dorena (Digital)
- Channel 35 London Springs (Digital)
- Channel 43 Florence (Digital)
- Channel 48 and 41 Cottage Grove (Digital)