Thanks to the quick work of LPFM advocate Michi Eyre at REC Networks, the FCC granted a one week extension on the comment window for the Third Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on low-power FM. In asking for the extension REC told the FCC that Hurricane Irene would interfere with commenters’ ability to submit on time, whether due to power outages, internet service disruption or the fact that LPFM broadcasters in the storm’s path would have been more focused on serving their local communities than writing and filing comments. Reply comments will then be due Monday, September 20.
As we reported back in July, the purpose of this rulemaking is to set the implementation of the Local Community Radio Act, which expands the opportunity for more new LPFM community stations.
In particular the FCC asked for comments on how to proceed with pending translator repeater station applications, given that these stations can be placed on frequencies that are also appropriate for new LPFMs. The Commission proposes setting a “floor” for the minimum number of LPFM-appropriate frequencies that must remain available in a given market after translator licensed are granted.
LPFM advocacy group the Prometheus Radio Project has created a video that explains this proposal. Prometheus also has an “action” page for those who want help submitting comments to the FCC.