FCC issues guidance on translator applications


FCCThe Local Community Radio Act has as its primary aim the expansion of the low power FM service. But it also seeks to create new FM translators, both for their standard use and as a supplement for signal-challenged AM stations. With the freeze on translators on the way to a thaw and the final adoption of new rules in the offing, the FCC has issued advice for those with pending translator applications.

Applicants need to figure out if their proposed CPs are in spectrum-limited or spectrum-available markets. And if they are in spectrum-available markets, they need to make sure that they will not preclude the establishment of new LPFM stations.

The big challenge for entities with multiple applications will be to pick which ones they would like to have processed. They face a national cap of 50, and may only apply for one translator per market, which means that some will have to withdraw selected applications to comply with those rules.

After that process is complete, the FCC will be able to begin considering the surviving applications in spectrum-available markets.

The FCC document on the topic is available here.