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Resolution Opposing Performance Royalty Introduced in Senate

Local Radio Freedom Act is counterpart to House resolution

The recently-introduced House resolution opposing a performance royalty for radio now has a Senate counterpart.

Wyoming Republican Sen. John Barrasso and North Dakota Democrat Sen. Heidi Heitkamp introduced the Local Radio Freedom Act into the Senate on Wednesday. The action comes as NAB and members of state broadcast associations lobbied on Capitol Hill this week.

For “more than 80 years, Congress has rejected repeated calls by the recording industry to impose a performance fee on local radio stations for simply playing music on the radio, as such a fee would upset the mutually beneficial relationship” between the two industries, states the nonbinding resolution. It also says lawmakers shouldn’t impose any new performance fee, tax, royalty or other charge relating to the public performance of sound recordings on local radio stations for airing sound recordings.

The House version, introduced by Texas Republican Michael Conaway and Texas Democrat Gene Green, now has 89 co-sponsors.