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NAB Offers FCC Several Proposals on Station Ownership

Many of the ideas are incentives to provide access to capital to potential minority, women owners

NAB has suggested several proposals to the FCC to increase the number of minority- and women-owned broadcast companies; in comments filed with the commission, the trade group endorsed initiatives offered by the Minority Media and Telecommunications Council to reduce barriers to entry.

Proposals must be designed to address the leading barrier to entry into the broadcast industry: access to capital, says the trade group. The NAB Education Foundation and the Broadcast Education Association sponsor programs designed to provide professionals and students access to employment in the broadcasting industry, along with training for management and station ownership.

NAB has urged the commission to sponsor primers on investment and financing of broadcast enterprises for smaller and regional lenders so that they may be better informed about the industry and more willing to make loans to new owners and adopt an incubator program to give broadcasters incentives to finance qualifying businesses.

The broadcast lobbying organization says the commission should urge Congress to provide tax incentives to station owners who sell stations to qualifying owners. It also urged the agency to reinstate the policy that permitted the transfer of grandfathered radio station combinations to any entity so long as the buyer assigns the excess stations to a qualifying business within one year.

The FCC is now sifting through public comments filed on its media ownership proceeding; the comments were due Dec. 26.