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Clear Channel San Diego in DOJ Probe

Clear Channel San Diego in DOJ Probe

Clear Channel has confirmed the Justice Department is looking into the broadcaster’s radio holdings in San Diego to see if the company holds too much radio ad power in the market. The company controls an estimated 45% of radio advertising in the market, according to the report.
Clear Channel’s SVP/Government Affairs Andy Levin described the probe as “routine” to the San Diego Union. He said Clear Channel is cooperating with the investigation, which began this summer.
Clear Channel owns 7 stations in San Diego and has operating agreements with 4 Mexican stations across the border.
As part of its new radio ownership rules, the FCC in June decided that now the Mexican stations counts toward Clear Channel’s total station count in the market, pushing the company above the 8-station limit. But those rules are now stayed and challenged in federal court.
If the new rules were upheld, Clear Channel would need to divest some of its San Diego and/or Mexican stations, making the DOJ probe moot.