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Local radio personality Lee Elci's morning AM talk show is moving from WXLM to the new CBS-affiliated FM station WJJF, 94.9 on the dial.
Starting next week, Elci, a Waterford High School graduate who played minor league baseball in the St. Louis Cardinals organization, will be bringing his brand of talk radio to an FM audience that he figures has the potential to reach four to five times more people than his current show attracts.
"It was a great six-year run," Elci said of his time at WXLM. "I've been lucky enough to surround myself with talented people and to surround myself with great guests."
Elci's show, to air from 6 to 9 a.m. Monday through Friday, will reach the important morning commuter audience and will be followed by a host of syndicated conservative talk shows, including Laura Ingraham from 9 a.m. to noon, Dennis Miller from noon to 3 p.m., Mike Gallagher from 3 to 6 p.m. and Michael Savage from 6 to 10 p.m.
On his show, Elci, who lives in East Lyme, talks about a range of local issues, from sports to news to music. He promises to bring back many of the same regular guests he had on WXLM, including The Day's Rick Koster and Mike DiMauro.
Elci, who has made appearances on the TV shows "Days of Our Lives" and "The Sopranos," also promises to continue leaning on leading politicians to come on his show, including U.S. Sen. Joe Lieberman, U.S. Rep. Joe Courtney, D-2nd District, and New London Mayor Daryl Finizio.
Finizio, he said, has been the topic of much of the discussion lately as callers mull over his handling of various issues, from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy's expansion plans to efforts to get police to ignore minor drug offenses.
"I get up every morning and I can't wait to do the show," Elci said. "People want to know about what's going on in their backyard."
John Fuller, owner of what will be known as 94.9 News Now and Stimulating Talk, said Monday that Elci's show is only part of his commitment to informing eastern Connecticut about local happenings and letting people have their say.
Among the new radio station's offerings will be a Sound Off segment, he said, that allows listeners to express their opinions. In addition, two newly hired people will be reporting on local news events 24 hours a day, he said.
"We're going to be out at Town Hall meetings and out at news conferences," he said.
In addition, the station will air on-the-hour CBS News updates as well as reports from The Wall Street Journal and The Osgood File.
Fuller's company Full Power Radio, formerly Red Wolf Broadcasting, owns a half dozen radio stations in New England, including the local stations WBMW 106.5 FM and Jammin 107.7 FM. He also owns Hartford station WMRQ 104.1 FM, Spanish-language 97.1 FM and the FM station 97.5 WTNN in Burlington, Vt.
The new FM 94.9 frequency was acquired from the Federal Communications Commission in June, Fuller said. The 6,000-watt station, whose shows will emanate from the company's Ledyard studios, is using a tower in Long Island to transmit within a 40-mile radius in eastern Connecticut, he added.