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Green Reintroduces Bill to Declare Satellite National Service

Would ban local programming and services

It’s early days in the 111th session of Congress but terrestrial radio still wants satellite radio to be banned from airing local content.

To that end, Rep. Gene Green, D-Texas, has reintroduced his bill to do that, the Local Emergency Radio Service Preservation Act of 2009.

Lawmakers would determine if content is local or not, under the legislation, which also restricts satellite repeaters to simultaneous retransmission of programming sent by satellite.

Developments in receiver technology will enable digital audio radio satellite service licensees to offer new services in the future, including local content that may be intermixed with other national content or that would be selected based on the listener’s location, according to the text of HR-245.

The bill would direct the FCC to complete a rulemaking to determine whether satcasters should be allowed to provide local services like traffic or weather on nationally distributed channels, taking into account the impact of those services on the viability of local radio stations and their ability to provide news and other services to the public.

The bill also directs the commission to take into account whether satcasters could provide the same level and quality of emergency communications services as local radio stations do.