Meeting with FCC staffers, NAB officials expressed concern about the dynamic reserve pricing the agency plans to use to buy broadcast spectrum in a reverse auction. DRP would allow the agency to continue to drop bid prices it offers to broadcasters even when their stations cannot be repacked in the TV band, the NAB said.
Now engaged in making sure their members get the best possible return for selling their spectrum in the FCC’s incentive auction next year, NAB staffers met with FCC officials to express concern about the FCC’s plan to use so-called dynamic reserve pricing in the auction.
“DRP, which would allow the commission to continue to drop bid prices it offers to broadcasters even when their stations cannot be repacked in the TV band, raises at least three major problems,” the NAB said, according to an FCC filing containing a description of the Feb. 6 meeting that became available yesterday.
“First, at a high level, DRP runs headlong into Congress’s clear instruction in the Spectrum Act to hold a market-based auction.
“Second, DRP threatens broadcaster participation in the auction because it gives the commission wide latitude to lower a broadcaster’s otherwise winning bid. This creates uncertainty about the rules and what value a broadcaster might ultimately realize through the auction.
“Third, to the degree the commission believes it essential to employ DRP, it must limit its application to a very narrow class of circumstances.”
The NAB staffers also asked for more flexible sharing rules that will allow broadcasters to double up on a single channel. “Most notably, the FCC…allow parties to enter into channel sharing arrangements after the auction,” the staffers said.