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Scripps Buys Lexington's WLEX-TV, 14 Other Stations

Cincinnati-based E.W. Scripps Co. grew to 51 TV stations in 36 markets with the purchase of 15 stations from Cordillera Communications today for $521 million.

WLEX-TV, the NBC affiliate in Lexington KY, is the closest to Scripps headquarters in downtown Cincinnati and flagship WCPO-TV.   Most of the stations are in the south and west, according to Scripps' announcement today:

--KATC-TV, ABC affiliate in Lafayette, Louisiana.

--KRIS-TV, NBC affiliate, and KAJA-TV, a Telemundo affiliate, in Corpus Christi, Texas.

--KOAA-TV, NBC affiliate in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

--KSBY-TV, NBC affiliate in Santa Barbara-San Luis Obispo, Calif.

--KPAX-TV and KAJJ-TV, a CBS affiliate in Missoula, Montana.

--KTVQ-TV, CBS affiliate in Billings, Montana.

--KXLF/KBZK, CBS affiliate in Butte-Bozeman, Montana.

--KRTV-TV, CBS affiliate, and KTGF-TV, NBC affiliate, in Great Falls, Montana.

--KTVH-TV, NBC affiliate, and KXLH-TV, CBS affiliate, in Helena, Montana

When the deal closes next year, Scripps will own 18 ABC stations, 11 NBC stations, seven CBS stations and two Fox stations. Cordillera Communications, owned by Evening Post Industries, kept one station in Tucson, AZ, because Scripps already operates a duopoly in that market, the company said.