The long-awaited filing window for certain Class C and D AM stations to apply for new FM translators will open at 12:01 a.m. EDT on July 26, 2017, and will close at 5:59 p.m. EDT (not at 11:59 p.m.) on August 2, 2017.
A second window for eligible Class A and B AM stations (and for eligible Class C and D stations that for some reason do not file in the window just announced) will open at a later date.
The FM translator filing window is in essence an FCC auction. Indeed, it has been designated as “FCC Auction 99.” That means most of the FCC’s auction rules will apply to the process.
On June 6, 2017, the FCC released a detailed Public Notice announcing filing instructions for the “Cross-Service FM Translator Auction Filing Window for AM Broadcasters.” (AU Docket No. 17-143, DA 17-533). The Commission also announced that between July 19th and the close of the filing window on August 2nd, there will be a temporary freeze on the acceptance of any FM translator minor change applications, Low Power FM minor change applications, and FM booster construction permit applications. The Media Bureau will dismiss any applications filed during the freeze.
Here’s a brief summary of the June 6th Public Notice, as well as other requirements and restrictions relevant to this filing window. Continue Reading