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Congress Explores Tools for Shutting Pirate Radio

Boosting FCC fines to as much as $2 million, penalizing building owners and stepping up raids in major Radio markets are among the options Congress is considering for combating illegal broadcast operations under legislation unveiled last week in a House Telecommunications Subcommittee hearing. The measures are intended to protect against interference with licensed broadcasters, the Emergency Alert System and airport flight controls, as well as radiation exposure to nearby residents and workers.

The bipartisan PIRATE Act, co-authored by Reps. Leonard Lance, R-NJ, and Paul Tonko, D-NY, would employ a combination of heightened penalties to stem the growing spread of pirate radio operations in communities throughout the country. Illegal operations are being found on the AM and FM bands alike, with FCC enforcement officers discovering transmitters operating from rooftops, balconies and other properties.

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LPFM Waiver on New EAS Reporting Duty Requested

In November 2017 LPFM  an advocacy group petitioned the FCC for relief to LPFM radio stations concerning meeting new multilingual EAS reporting requirements.

Citing low publicity surrounding an order adopted by the FCC in March 2016  and lack of input from LPFM stations, REC Networks has  filed a motion for either a blanket waiver or extension of time for LPFMs.

Currently the FCC has established that all EAS participants must report some EAS details to their State Emergency Communications Committees by Nov. 6. The information includes:

  • Description of any actions taken by the EAS participant to make EAS alert content available in languages other than English to its non-English speaking audiences; and
  • Description of any future actions planned by the EAS participant to provide EAS alert content in languages other than English to its non-English speaking audiences, as well as an explanation of the decision to plan/not plan such actions.

 

A separate reporting requirement due by Nov. 13, known as Form Three,  should detail the results of the most recent National EAS Test.

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Special FM Translator Window for AM Stations Open

As announced in October 2015 in the AM Order the commission had opened a special filing window for FM translators for use with AM radio stations. This is a two part window, with the first part open now for the next six months – ending July 28, 2016. The second window will be for three months opening July 29th and closing October 31st, 2016.

The current window is for Class C and D AM licensees only. The second round in July will be for AM stations of any class. Applications are processed on a first come first serve basis. So timing is of the essence. It is important to get started immediately.
During the window periods AM stations or permittees are being given the opportunity to acquire and relocate one FM translator station in the non reserved band – 92.1 – 107.9 Mhz. The translator may be relocated up to 250 miles.

Only one application may be filed by the AM station and may only be listed as the primary input on a single translator application.

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LPFM Radio Filing Window – Congress Takes Notice – Filing Window Extended through 11/14

BREAKING: LPFM Store staff Dustin Williams was in contact with Third District Congressman Adrian Smith who said this morning: "We will be releasing an LPFM-specific public notice shortly which will announce an extended window filing period and the rescheduling of the webinar that was to have occurred on 10/3." The extended window is confirmed through at least 11/14 - We continue to work for an additional extension through 11/21 Continue reading

Low Power FM Radio Filing Window is Open – When it Closes – No One Knows for Sure!

For now we know this for sure, the window is open NOW. If you intend to apply you need to take necessary steps immediately to ensure there is enough time to prepare your applications and file during this open window. Depending on your situation, even at an accelerated pace, there are several steps in preparation you must take that could take several days. We have ways of accelerating this process, but you will need to call is today to make sure you don't lose this very rare opportunity. Call us today at 888-672-4234We will keep you informed of the LPFM filing window closure dates and any further Low Power FM Radio information at LPFMStore.com and on our automated hotline at 903-550-0203 This free hotline will remain available throughout the LPFM Radio filing window. Continue reading
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  • REC Networks Asks FCC to "Help Move LPFM Forward"
    REC Networks filed a Petition for Rulemaking with the FCC calling for changes in how LPFM stations are required to protect FM translators. There's a lot to digest here, and for those interested in LPFM and its impact on others, it’s worth a deeper read here. In the June 13 filing (RM-11810), REC’s ...
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