Originally signed on the air as KMST (Monterey-Salinas Television) on January 25, 1969, a CBS affiliate on UHF channel 46, taking it over from NBC affiliate KSBW (VHF channel 8), which affiliated with CBS on a secondary basis. KMST was available in markets that reached from the Monterey Bay area to San Jose, California. Retlaw Broadcasting, a subsidiary of Retlaw Enterprises, a company owned by relatives of Walt Disney, acquired channel 46 from its original local owners in 1979.
The "-TV" suffix was added in 1991.
On October 4, 1993, Retlaw sold channel 46 to a partnership between Harron Communications and Smith Broadcasting, with Smith Broadcasting having control of the joint venture). On October 4, the new owners changed channel 46's call sign to KCCN-TV (standing for Central Coast News), calls shared with two stations in Honolulu, Hawaii, the AM KCCN, and KCCN-FM, with the latter group agreeing to it based on FCC procedures at the time, though with hesitation and concerns over confusion between the entities.
On February 23, 1997, KCCN changed its call letters again, this time to KION, after the rise of the World Wide Web brought new complaints from the Honolulu radio stations, who wanted to restrict channel 46 from using their call sign on their website.
Late in 1998, Ackerley bought KION outright from Harron and sold KCBA to Seal Rock Broadcasters. It took more than a year for this transaction to receive Federal Communications Commission (FCC) approval, due to the then-pending license renewals for both stations; and the deal was completed on January 12, 2000. However, Ackerley continued to operate KCBA through an LMA with its new owners, resulting in KION now becoming the senior partner in the LMA. By that time CBS' ratings had recovered to be competitive with those of ABC and NBC.
Ackerley merged with Clear Channel Communications, who added the -TV suffix to channel 46's legal callsign when what was then KTXX (AM 1460, also owned by Clear Channel) took the KION call letters on August 14, 2002.
On April 20, 2007, Clear Channel entered into an agreement to spin off its entire television stations group to Newport Television, a broadcasting holding company established by the private equity firm Providence Equity Partners. However, Newport Television could not keep KION or Telemundo affiliate KMUV-LP due to Providence Equity Partners' partial ownership of several media properties that serve parts of the Monterey market.
1This station is owned by Hubbard Broadcasting, but is operated by NPG. 2This station is owned by VistaWest Media, LLC, but is operated by NPG. 3This station carries a secondary MyNetworkTV affiliation on its primary channel. 4This station was built and signed on by NPG. 5Originally operating as a cable-only channel, News-Press 3 NOW is also relayed on a second digital subchannel of KNPN-LD. 6Owned by Cox Media Group, NPG operates these stations under a SSA.
Notes Stations are arranged alphabetically by state and territory, and based on the station's city of license or Designated Market Area. +Station carries CW programming on a digital subchannel, via The CW Plus. +1Local CW Plus affiliate operates as cable-only channel.
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