Your browser is out-of-date!

Update your browser to view this website correctly. Update my browser now


State Associations Back AM Radio Mandate

Also, farm broadcasters launch an AM advocacy site

More developments on the AM radio front.

State broadcast associations representing all 50 states, D.C. and Puerto Rico passed a resolution in support of the “AM Radio for Every Vehicle Act” in Congress.

The resolution provides a roundup of all the reasons that have been cited by AM supporters for keeping AM in cars including the reach of AM signals; the still-significant number of listeners; AM’s role in EAS; the investment by FEMA in hardening PEP facilities for use in worst-case national crises; the reliability of AM compared to wireless and internet services during power losses; and the role of AM in serving minority, non-English-speaking and other underrepresented communities.

The state associations also said that including AM radio in electric vehicles “is neither especially costly nor technically complex to achieve.” (Read the resolution.)

Separately, the National Association of Farm Broadcasting has launched an AM advocacy website.

“Why I Listen” too summarizes the arguments about AM’s role in emergency alerting and in serving communities, and emphasizes its role in rural life.

“Radio is the most used source of daily agribusiness information,” the site states.

“Farmers and ranchers depend on AM radio to obtain information about weather, markets, ag news, ag commentary and local events. AM radio is especially critical in areas where reliable broadband has yet to be deployed as well as in areas where FM signals do not extend. AM radio gives a larger coverage area and is often the only stable form of communication for rural areas.”

The site also offers a possible $500 prize to people who submit reasons that they listen to AM.

The National Association of Broadcasters launched an “AM Radio Toolkit” earlier.

A House Communications and Technology Subcommittee hearing about AM radio is set for Tuesday.

The bill on Capitol Hill would direct the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to issue a rule that requires automakers to maintain free AM broadcast radio in vehicles. It would require an automaker that sells vehicles without access to AM before the rule takes effect to disclose that to consumers. And it would direct the Government Accountability Office to study whether alternative communication systems could replicate the reach and effectiveness of AM broadcast for emergency alerting.

[Related: “Here Are the Markets With the Largest Proportion of AM Radio Listeners”]