Will the new regulatory environment on Capitol Hill be any friendlier to LPFMs?
A bill has been re-introduced in Congress to drop third-adjacent channel protections for full-power FMs and FM translators and boosters to allow more LPFMs on the dial.
Rep. Mike Doyle, D-Pa., introduced H.R. 1147, the bill has bipartisan support from 22 co-sponsors so far.
Third-adjacent channel protection for full-power non-commercial FMs that broadcast radio reading services on their subcarriers is retained in The Local Community Radio Act of 2009.
Regarding the needs of FM translators vs. LPFMs, the bill states that when licensing FM translators, the FCC will ensure “that licenses are available to both FM translator stations and low-power FM stations; and that such decisions are made based on the needs of the local community.”
Supporters like the Future of Music Coalition and Prometheus Radio Project expect companion legislation to be introduced in the Senate and fare better than in previous sessions of Congress. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., co-sponsored the Senate version and then-Sen. Barack Obama supported the measure in the prior session of Congress.