Thursday, January 28, 2016

Report: Translator Filings Expected To Flood FCC

Buyers and sellers are expected to flood the FCC with a torrent of FM translator applications come Friday. That’s when the Commission opens an historic filing window for Class C and D AM stations to relocate FM translators up to 250 miles.

How big will the wave be? One broker told InsideRadio he personally plans to file seven deals on Friday, which is almost half the number he’d file during an average year.

While the window will be open for six months, Friday’s action is likely to focus on large markets where opportunities to relocate translators are scarce. With the FCC treating applications on a first come, first served basis, operators are anxious to get first dibs. “In crowded metropolitan areas where there may be one or two available frequencies to move a translator to, people want to make sure they’re first in line,” says Media Services Group director Bob Heymann. “If you’re second and there’s only one frequency, you’re out of luck.”

Many Friday filings are expected to be for existing construction permits. Since applicants are filing to move translators up to 250 miles, CPs come without the baggage of an existing licensed translator, such as a tower site lease, antenna, transmitter or transmission line that couldn’t be easily used at the new location. “CPs have been much easier to sell than existing translators,” Heymann says.

ALSO READ: What AM Stations Need To Do. Click Here

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