Shared Services: Skirting Rules Or Saving Stations?

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RBR+TVBR INFOCUS


A pair of Asset Purchase Agreements were filed with the FCC on Wednesday, March 1, that in the eyes of the Commission are no different than any other.

The stations’ licenses are going from one party to another. Money is being exchanged.

However, there is a caveat: Through a “Shared Services Agreement,” the seller, Sinclair Broadcast Group, will still be involved in the day-to-day operation of the stations, albeit to a limited extent.

Is this fair? The Ajit Pai-led FCC says yes, and Republican Commissioner Michael O’Rielly has been vocal in his views about the SSA’s importance to broadcasters.

Under prior FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, the likelihood of these spins passing muster with the Commission would have been far more risky.

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