The Commission’s DTV Third Periodic Review adopting the rules and procedures for moving television stations through the end of the DTV transition was published in the Federal Register today, meaning that almost all of the new rules and forms adopted by the Order are now effective. Now that the majority of the new rules are
As we reminded broadcasters earlier this month, the first filings of FCC Form 397, the Broadcast Mid-Term EEO Report, will be due to be filed at the FCC on June 1. This report is filed 4 years after the due date for filing of a station’s license renewal application, and is to be filed by all radio station employment units with more than 10 full time employees, and all TV station employment units with five or more employees. The first reports are due on June 1 by radio groups in Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia and the District of Columbia. Every two months thereafter, stations in a different group of states will need to file their Mid-Term reports. Last week, the FCC released a Public Notice clarifying some aspects of the filing process.
The Public Notice addressed two principal issues – (1) what happens when radio station clusters and their associated station employment units include stations in different states with different filing deadlines, and (2) what happens when employment units include both radio and television stations in the same state. For radio employment units with stations in different states, the FCC reminds broadcasters that they should have made an election about which state’s filing deadline to use back in 2003 when the current EEO rules were adopted, and they should have been using that election for each of their public file reports since then. That same election would control the filing deadline for the Mid-Term report.