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FCC Proposes to Revise 74-Year-Old Antenna Site Rules


FCC
FCC

The FCC has issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), seeking comment on whether it should eliminate or revise the requirements of the Commission's rules, regarding access to FM and TV broadcast antenna sites. Currently the 74-year-old rules prohibit the grant, or renewal, of a license for an FM or TV station if that applicant or licensee controls an antenna site that is peculiarly suitable for broadcasting in the area and does not make the site available for use by other similar licensees.

The agency is seeking comment on whether these requirements, which are rarely invoked, are outdated and unnecessary in light of the significant changes in the broadcast marketplace, including significant growth in the availability of broadcast infrastructure that has occurred since these restrictions were first adopted nearly 74 years ago. The proceeding is part of an effort to continue to modernize FCC rules and eliminate or modify outdated and unnecessary regulations.

The earliest rules on record adopted by the FCC regarding the use of common FM and TV antenna sites date from 1945. These rules provide that no FM or TV broadcast license, or license renewal, will be granted to any person who leases, or controls a particular site which is peculiarly suitable for FM or TV broadcasting in a particular area, unless the site is available for use by other FM or TV licensees.

The FCC wants comment on whether it should eliminate or revise these rules. In particular, we invite comment on whether the requirements regarding the use of common FM and TV antenna sites continue to serve the public interest in light of the vast changes in the broadcasting marketplace and infrastructure since they were first adopted.

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