FCC Starts Rulemaking on AM Use of FM Translators
On August 15, 2007 the FCC issued an NRPM to explore the use of FM translators by AM stations. Among the issues to be examined is program origination at night over FM translators by daytime-only AM stations. The proposed rulemaking comes about as a result of a petition by the National Association of Broadcasters.
A year ago, the National Association of Broadcasters filed a petition for rulemaking proposing an amendment to the FCC Rules to license FM translator stations to AM broadcast stations to retransmit their AM service as a fill-in service. The NAB Petition proposed that the AM station’s FM translator 60dBu coverage contour not extend beyond the smaller of a 25-mile radius from the AM transmitter site, or the 2mV/m daytime contour of the AM station. More than 500 comments on the NAB petition were received, with strong support for the proposal.
Comments in MB Docket No. 07-172 are due 60 days after the public notice appears in the Federal Register, with reply comments due 90 days after publication.