The FCC on Sept. 1 postponed the due date for the submission of 2017 biennial broadcast ownership reports to the FCC until March 2, 2018. Biennial ownership reports are required to be filed every two years by all commercial and (starting this year) noncommercial AM, FM, TV, Class A, and LPTV stations and entities holding attributable ownership interests in those stations. This year’s reports had initially been due to be filed by Dec. 1, 2017, which is now the date on which the filing window for those reports will open, instead of closing. The reports now due on March 2, 2018 include FCC Forms 323 and 323-E, which will now need to be filed in the Licensing and Management System (LMS). Despite the delay in the filing window, these biennial ownership reports must still describe stations’ ownership as it existed on Oct. 1, 2017.
The start of the filing window was postponed, according to the FCC, “… to provide sufficient time to properly implement the electronic versions of the revised Forms 323 and 323-E in the Licensing and Management System (LMS)” and to work around upcoming holidays. The extended window the FCC says will “ensure that filers have sufficient time to complete and submit their reports.”
While that remains to be seen, at the least, the delay may give many filers reason to give thanks this Thanksgiving, as they now will not need to spend that holiday weekend preparing ownership reports.