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FCC Lists Dormant Proceedings to Close

Do you care? Here’s the list to find out

“Hey, we’ve got all these old proceedings stacked up over here … Whaddya want me to do wit’ ’em?”

The FCC didn’t quite put it that way; but it is asking the public whether certain docketed proceedings should be terminated as dormant. (Maybe instead we can visualize Mrs. FCC standing by her husband and scolding him to “get rid of all those boxes of paper you haven’t looked at in the last five years!”)

In 2011 as part of its efficiency and openness initiative, the commission gave the chief of the Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau the job of reviewing open dockets to see which ones could be terminated. These generally are dockets in which no further action is expected, and those in which no pleadings or other documents have been filed for years.

Last November the bureau terminated about 1,000 proceedings as dormant. Now it has identified more, and issued a public notice so that you can comment before any particular proceeding is terminated.

The current batch covers a range of topics that have either been acted on or that lie fallow. They include topics broad as well as specific: allowing AMs to use FM translators; permitting satellite feeds to NCE FM translators operating on commercial frequencies; setting rules for digital output protection technology; protecting New Jersey radio listeners from interference from translators and LPFMs; numerous amendments to the FM table of allotments; and renewal of an FM license in Shamrock, Texas.

The list of proceedings is here (PDF). The section marked “Media,” starting on page 8, contains the list likely of most interest to RW readers.

The FCC also noted, “To the extent that a particular proceeding includes a petition addressing the merits or other pending pleadings, a party’s failure to file comments in response to this Public Notice will be construed as consent to termination of that proceeding. A party aggrieved by a docket termination may file a petition for reconsideration with CGB or an application for review with the full commission.”

In other words, “Tell us now, or it’s going in the trash.”

Info about the list and how to comment is here.