Looking ahead on Capitol Hill


U.S. CongressThere are always a few broadcast issues percolating away on Capitol Hill, and it would be of particular interest if Congress were to spend any time during the remainder of the year on retransmission consent or a radio performance royalty. But as yet nothing has been posted on the schedules of the four key committees.

Indeed, only the Senate Judiciary has tipped its hand on any hearings of any kind, and the two on the schedule have nothing to do with communications in general or broadcasting in particular.

The House Judiciary, which like the Senate would be the kick-off point for any royalty hearings, has nothing on the schedule.

The two Commerce committees get the bulk of the broadcast action, and they haven’t posted any hearing dates as yet either, although the House Communications Subcommittee has said it will be doing more work on the topic of satellite broadcasting.

Congress is expected to be concentrating on budget and debt issues, with funding for the Affordable Care Act likely to bea major related topic. But that will not necessarily preclude any work on broadcast matters. We’ll be keeping an eye on it.