The FCC made so many decisions regarding the future of pending FM translator applications and future low-power FMs it had to break up its determinations into two documents.
The second document, a Fifth Report and Order and Fourth Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Fourth Order on Reconsideration, was also released last night. In the fifth R&O, the agency eliminated third-adjacent channel protections for full-service FMs in order to fit more LPFMs on the dial. Congress mandated that change when it passed the Local Radio Community Act. Spacing requirements remain to protect Radio Reading Services.
In the further notice, the FCC asked for comment on how to implement other provisions of LCRA, such as whether and under what conditions it should allow waivers of second-adjacent channel spacing requirements for full-service stations to allow more LPFMs in a market. It also asked for comments on complaint procedures for cases of third-adjacent channel interference to full-service FMs and interference to FM translator inputs.
The agency also asked for public input on recommended rule changes to help LPFMs become more sustainable while also preserving the technical integrity of all FM services, including the elimination of the LP10s and a power increase for LPFMs in certain areas. It also proposed allowing an entity to own both an LPFM and an FM translator.
Comments are due to MM Docket 99-25 30 days after Federal Register publication.