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FCC Sets Deadline for Repack Reimbursement

For FM stations, the date is in 2022, but you don't have to wait til then

If you have an FM station and plan to seek reimbursement for costs related to the big TV repack in the United States, here’s a note from the FCC regarding filing deadlines.

The Incentive Auction Task Force and the Media Bureau announced deadlines for eligible entities to submit remaining invoices and other documentation. But don’t sweat just yet, you have a little bit of time.

FM stations fall in the “all other entities” part of the discussion, and the deadline for their final submission is Sept. 5, 2022. (“Entities are encouraged to initiate close out procedures as early as possible and we emphasize that they need not wait for their assigned final invoice filing deadline to do so,” according to the statement.)

In July of 2023, any “unobligated” amounts in the Fund will be rescinded and handed back to the U.S. Treasury.

Read the detailed announcement including background about the reimbursement process.}

The FCC says so far the participants in the reimbursement fund include 89 FM stations.

The program for most TV stations began in 2017 and was expanded in 2019 to include FM and LPTV/translator stations. FM radio spectrum was not subject to repacking in this huge national project, but some FMs whose antennas are on or near a tower supporting a repacked TV station antenna incurred costs due to construction of repacked television facilities.

Some FMs have already incurred their costs and others may still do so as repacked TV stations complete transition to their final facilities. The commission said it is aware that FM stations may incur costs toward the end of repacked stations’ construction projects.

The FCC has a Reimbursement Help Line at (202) 418-2009 or e-mail [email protected].