Senators Call On FCC To Ease Up On JSAs

Twelve lawmakers told the FCC today they are "extremely disturbed" to learn that the FCC is conditioning grants of station transfer on broadcasters' terminating JSAs before they would otherwise have to. The 12 said they were all supporters of the law grandfathering JSAs until 2025.

In a letter to the FCC dated today, a dozen U.S. Senators let the agency know they are “extremely disturbed” to learn that the FCC is requiring broadcasters to unwind joint sales agreements as a condition of approving station sales.

The bi-partisan group said they were supporters of the law that grandfathered existing JSAs until 2025.

“The FCC is entrusted with an important responsibility to review license transfers, and it must not use these reviews to undermine Congress’ clear intent to preserve JSAs that were lawfully executed prior to the FCC’s 2014 rule changes,” they said.

They suggest the FCC go back and eliminate all JSA conditions on any deal it has already approved and refrain from imposing them in the future.

Signing the letter were Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), Richard Durbin (D-Ill.), John Boozman (R-Ark.), Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), Cory Gardner (R-Colo.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), Robert Casey (D-Pa.), Timothy Scott (R-S.C.) and Benjamin Cardin (D-Md.)

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Andrea Rader says:

March 12, 2016 at 7:00 am

Media General might have to answer to the FCC, but the FCC has to answer to Congress, and Congress ultimately sets FCC policy.