Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Group Wants FCC To Slow The AM Translator Train

A key proponent of the low-power FM service is trying to slow the AM radio translator train, worried about the harm a recent rule change might cause to LPFMs,m according to RadioWorld.

Prometheus Radio Project on Monday petitioned the Federal Communications Commission to issue “an emergency partial stay” of the change it adopted last month. Prometheus wants the FCC to freeze any processing of translator applications that take advantage of the change.

The change will give 2,000 or so U.S. AM radio stations that rebroadcast on FM translators more flexibility in locating their FM signals. The FCC expanded the site limitations where such translators can rebroadcast their source AMs.

“The new provision is currently scheduled to become effective on April 10, 2017,” Prometheus reminded the FCC. “There will be hundreds, perhaps even thousands of translator applications filed immediately thereafter, as evidenced by the trade press heading proclaiming ‘AM Broadcasters — April 10 Is Christmas for You.’ Ordinarily, unopposed translator applications are granted within weeks of filing.”

LPFMs and translators have been competing interests on the FM dial for years as the numbers of both have proliferated and as translators have become an end to themselves in many cases.

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