March 21, 2023


Advocacy. Mediation. Success.

July Regulatory Dates for Broadcasters:  Quarterly Issues/Programs Lists and Other Public File Obligations, Lowest Unit Charge Periods, License Renewal, Copyright Filings and More

The lazy times of summer season keep on to present very little respite from the regulatory steps of significance to broadcasters.  The superior news is that there are no license renewal or EEO  deadlines all through the thirty day period of July.  Even so, there will be a range of July deadlines that require awareness.

On July 1, opinions are owing on the FCC’s Office of Economics and Analytics once-a-year phone for opinions on the Condition of Competitors in the Communications Marketplace (see the Community Recognize contacting for these remarks). The comments are applied to put together a report to Congress on communications levels of competition issues and are in some cases referenced by the FCC alone in proceedings dealing with competitiveness difficulties.  The FCC seeks opinions on a list of issues about competitiveness in both of those the Online video and Audio marketplaces, like the influence of digital opponents on traditional providers and the role that regulation performs in the competitive landscape.  Reply comments are thanks August 1.

July 5 and July 18 are the comment and reply comment deadlines, respectively, for the FCC’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on the FCC’s proposed regulatory service fees for fiscal calendar year 2022.  The service fees that the FCC is proposing for television (full energy and in any other case) and radio stations are set forth in Appendix C and Appendix G of the doc.  The FCC is proposing an enhance of around 13% for radio broadcasters.  Amid other factors, the FCC proposes to carry on to evaluate fees for whole-energy broadcast tv stations based on the inhabitants protected by a complete-company broadcast tv station’s contour, and it seeks remark on its system for calculating the regulatory rate based on the this population-dependent methodology.  These charges will be set by the stop of August or incredibly early September, to be compensated right before the October 1 begin of the government’s new fiscal year.

In addition, on or in advance of July 10, all total-electrical power radio, complete-energy television, and Course A television stations, both equally business and noncommercial, must add their Quarterly Concerns/Software Lists for the next quarter (April 1, 2022, through June 30, 2022) to their on the net public inspection information.  As we’ve formerly mentioned, the lists should detect the challenges of importance to the station’s local community and the packages that the station aired in April, May and June that dealt with those troubles.  The lists really should be organized very carefully and properly, as they are the only official data of how your station is serving the general public and addressing the needs and interests of its community.  See our submit listed here for additional on the significance of the Quarterly Challenges/Programs Listing obligations.

July 10 is also the deadline by which Course A tv stations ought to upload to their on the internet general public inspection files their documentation of continuing eligibility for Course A standing for the next quarter of 2022.  It is also the deadline by which noncommercial educational stations not affiliated with NPR or PBS have to add to their on line general public inspection data files documentation of on-air fundraising that benefitted third parties and interrupted usual programming all through the 2nd quarter of 2022.

Notice that the July 10 deadline falls on a weekend, and there is FCC precedent indicating that that the deadline so is prolonged to the following organization working day, which is Monday, July 11.  Even so, stations are inspired to add in progress of the deadline to stay clear of difficulties with add delays or errors.

At its open up meeting scheduled for July 14, the FCC will look at adopting a Observe of Proposed Rulemaking (a draft of which is available here) that seeks comment on whether or not to update the FCC’s procedures to detect a new publication for figuring out a television station’s designated industry location (“DMA”) for satellite and cable carriage purposes.  The proposed rule adjustments would get rid of references to the now defunct annual Station Index and Residence Estimates and rather direct broadcasters to Nielsen’s Local Television set Report.  At that exact same conference, the FCC will also take into consideration adopting an Get and Sixth See of Proposed Rulemaking (draft out there listed here), which, if adopted, would update the FCC’s procedures to mirror the new termination of analog operations by LPTV and television translator stations.

As we have previously documented, the FCC not too long ago declared that it will be decommissioning its legacy Fee Registration Technique (“CORES”) at 6 pm EST on July 15.  The legacy procedure will be replaced by the existing (new) edition of CORES (CORES2), which has the similar Federal Registration Amount (FRN) info as the legacy program (observed here ).  This improve will affect how individuals, licensees and other entities undertaking organization just before the FCC obtain and regulate their FRNs, and will also affect accessibility to several FCC databases, including the Licensing and Management System (“LMS”) applied for making ready and filing schedule FCC purposes (together with children’s Tv reports).   To retain entry to the information and facts in CORES, all licensees need to have to sign-up in the new method.  Tutorial films on navigating CORES2 can identified listed here .

Comment dates have been introduced in the Federal Sign-up for the FCC’s Observe of Proposed Rulemaking proposing to authorize LPTV stations running on Tv set channel 6 to keep on to give an analog audio stream that can be obtained on FM radios at 87.7.  Comments are because of July 18, and reply opinions are owing August 1.  The proposal would limit that authorization in many means, which include suggesting that the authority would be restricted to those people LPTV Channel 6 stations previously offering these kinds of an audio support.  The Recognize also asks for remarks as to whether or not Channel 6, in geographic locations exactly where it is not at present used for Television companies, should be repurposed for FM use (see our Broadcast Legislation Web site article here on earlier FCC requests for remark on this problem).

Television stations with regionally-manufactured programming whose signals have been carried as distant indicators by at least just one cable or satellite system in 2021 ought to file their copyright royalty claims with the Copyright Royalty Board (“CRB”) for the duration of the time period from July 1 by means of August 1.  The CRB needs that these filings be manufactured online through the eCRB program (even further details is readily available right here).  In addition, the CRB reminds statements filers to sign up for an eCRB account properly forward of August 1 if they do not previously have 1.

As we indicated in a prior regulatory dates reminder, the political broadcast year has arrived and consequently broadcasters need to be informed of the dates by which Cheapest Device Fee (“LUR”) durations start off for future elections.  On July 2, the LUR period commences for the elections to be held on August 16 (i.e., Alaska (Key), South Dakota (Principal Runoff), and Wyoming (Main)).  On July 9, the LUR period begins for the elections to be held on August 23 (i.e., Florida (Most important), Oklahoma (Key Runoff)).  On July 13, the LUR time period starts for the election to be held on August 27 (Guam (Principal)).  And, on July 30, the LUR period of time commences for the elections to be held on September 13 (Delaware (Key), New Hampshire (Most important), and Rhode Island (Primary)).

Hunting ahead to early August, observe that August 1 is the deadline for total power television, Class A tv, LPTV, and Tv set translator license renewal purposes for stations in California.  As we have previously suggested,  renewal apps should be accompanied by FCC Form 2100, Schedule 396 Broadcast EEO Software Report (other than for LPFMs and Tv translators).  Stations submitting for renewal of their license need to make certain that all files expected to be uploaded to the station’s on the net public file are comprehensive and were being uploaded on time.  Be aware that your Broadcast EEO Program Report ought to include two a long time of Once-a-year EEO Community File Reports for FCC assessment, unless your employment unit employs less than five total-time employees.  Be absolutely sure to examine the directions for the license renewal software and consult with your advisors if you have queries, particularly if you have observed any discrepancies in your on-line general public file or political file.  Issues with the general public file have already led to fines imposed on Tv set broadcasters in the course of this renewal cycle.

And lastly, August 1 is also the deadline by which radio and television station work models with 5 or extra full-time staff licensed to communities in California, Illinois, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Wisconsin must upload Yearly EEO Public Experiences to stations’ on the internet general public inspection files and sites.

As normally, overview these dates with your authorized and technological advisors, be aware other dates not shown below that may well be applicable to your functions, and in any other case stay on top rated of all of your regulatory obligations.