Should public TV stations that use a portion of their spectrum to provide noncommercial data services have to pay fees for that service? That question is before the FCC in a rulemaking proceeding, with groups including PBS, America’s Public Television Stations and the Public Media Venture Group arguing that the fees are hindering development of ATSC 3.0 “broadcast internet” datacasting.
Some broadcasters are asking the FCC to postpone any consideration of an increase in broadcast regulatory fees —radio and TV — during the current pandemic. Paul Rotella, president of the New Jersey Broadcasters Association (the state is one of the hardest hit by the COVID-19 virus) wrote FCC Chairman Ajit Pai to say he had grave concerns about the FCC’s plan to consider the fee boost at the May 13 public meeting (by teleconference).
The FCC yesterday released several fact sheets detailing how the regulatory fees due to be paid by Sept. 24 of this year should be paid. For broadcasters, perhaps the most important is the Media Bureau Regulatory Fees Fact Sheet. This sheet sets out specific information about how to determine the amount of the fees to be paid by each broadcast station.
The FCC yesterday released an Order announcing its adjustments to its application fees for commercial broadcasters and other FCC licensees. The fee schedule reflects a 3.7% cost of living increase in the processing fees that are paid when broadcasters file an application with the FCC.