FCC Issues First EEO Audit of 2020 Targeting 320 Radio and Television Stations – Reviewing the Basics of the FCC’s EEO RulesPosted On: February 7, 2020
The FCC yesterday released another of its regular EEO audit notices (available here), asking that approximately 240 radio stations and about 80 TV stations, and the station employment units (commonly owned stations serving the same area) with which they are associated, provide to the FCC (by posting the information in their online public inspection file) their last... Continue Reading…
Quick Thoughts on a Few Political Broadcasting Legal Issues to Survive the Primary SeasonPosted On: February 5, 2020
One presidential caucus down, 49 (primaries and caucuses, plus a few more in the territories) to go in the next four months – with primaries for Congressional, state and local offices stretching out through August. This presidential primary race has already seen unprecedented amounts of advertising on local stations, including through network advertising buys. Based... Continue Reading…
BMI Settlement of Royalty Battle with RMLC to Include Music in Podcasts? – Not So Fast….Posted On: January 31, 2020
BMI and the Radio Music License Committee announced a settlement of their rate court litigation over the royalties that commercial radio will pay for the public performance of musical compositions licensed by BMI. While we have not yet seen the agreement, the press release already raises one issue likely to sew confusion in the broadcast... Continue Reading…
Did You Know that There is a Rule that Broadcasters Have to Tell Their Audience that a Program Is Recorded When It Seems to Be Live? – FCC Sends a $50,000 ReminderPosted On: January 30, 2020
Did you know that the FCC has a rule that requires that a broadcaster notify its audience that a program has been pre-recorded when the program “creates the impression” that it is live? Probably many broadcasters had forgotten about that rule (if they ever knew it existed). This week the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau entered into a Consent Decree with Salem Media Group, in which Salem agreed to pay a $50,000 penalty and set up a monitoring and compliance plan for 3 years, after admitting that it violated this FCC rule. The Enforcement Bureau specifically states that the action “will send a signal to the industry that the Commission remains vigilant in its duty to ensure that licensees adhere to the live broadcasting rule.” Consider yourself warned! ... Read More
Looking Ahead to the Rest of 2020 – Potential Legal and Regulatory Issues For the Remainder of the YearPosted On: January 28, 2020
Most years, at some point in January, we look into our crystal ball and try to see some of the legal and regulatory issues likely to face broadcasters. We already provided a calendar of the routine regulatory filings that are due this year (see our Broadcaster’s Regulatory Calendar). But not on that calendar are the... Continue Reading…
February Regulatory Dates for Broadcasters—License Renewals, EEO Reporting, Rulemaking Comments, FM Auction Filing Deadline, Lowest Unit Rate Windows, and MorePosted On: January 23, 2020
With the holiday season getting smaller in the rear-view mirror and many parts of the country dealing with ice, snow, and single-digit temperatures, broadcasters could be forgiven for dreaming about the sunshine and warmth that come with spring. Before spring arrives, however, broadcasters need to tend to important regulatory matters in February. And, if you... Continue Reading…
Lowest Unit Charge Windows Open in About 30 States and Territories – Reviewing A Broadcaster’s Political Advertising ObligationsPosted On: January 17, 2020
On January 18, the lowest unit charge window for Presidential primaries or caucuses begins in Super Tuesday states including Alabama, American Samoa (D), Arkansas, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, and Virginia. The LUC window opened on January 15 for South Carolina’s Democratic primary and will open on January 23... Continue Reading…
FCC Consent Decree Requires $1,130,000 Payment to Settle Issues About Monitoring Tower Lights – Are You Doing What’s Required?Posted On: January 16, 2020
Earlier this week, the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau released an Order approving a consent decree with Scripps Broadcasting where Scripps agreed to pay a penalty of $1,130,000 for perceived violations of the FCC’s rules requiring tower light monitoring for towers used by a number of TV stations that it had recently purchased. The company also agreed... Continue Reading…
Facebook Not Fact-Checking Candidate Ads – Looking at the Contrast Between Online Political Ads and Those Running on Broadcast and CablePosted On: January 13, 2020
This weekend, the New York Times ran an article seemingly critical of Facebook for not rejecting ads from political candidates that contained false statements of fact. We have already written that this policy of Facebook matches the policy that Congress has imposed on broadcast stations and local cable franchisees who sell time to political candidates... Continue Reading…
PIRATE Act Passes Senate, and Now on to the President for Signature – Provides for Big Fines and Enforcement Sweeps in Big MarketsPosted On: January 10, 2020
The PIRATE Act, to crack down on pirate radio, passed the Senate this week after having passed in the House of Representatives last year. It now goes to the President for signature. We’ve written about this legislation several times before (see for instance, our articles here and here). In this final version, it provides more... Continue Reading…
2019 was an outstanding year for our Association, despite a devastating fire that completely destroyed our office back in June.
Throughout the year we continued our aggressive lobbying efforts on Capitol Hill and in Carson City. We lobbied members of Congress on such issues as the Local Radio Freedom Act which prevents the enactment of a royalty tax on local radio stations. Our actions helped efforts dealing with the Satellite Television Extension and Localism Act Reauthorization. We also joined an effort to legalize radio and television advertising for CBD products in states where it is legal.
In addition, we successfully killed several negative bills at the state legislature, one of which dealt with automobile advertising on television and radio stations.
In 2019 we had multiple meetings with Nevada’s Congressional delegation. We met with the Governor, key members of the state legislature and held receptions for elected officials throughout the state.
I’m honored to continue serving as a voting member of the Homeland Security Commission, a gubernatorial appointment which was codified into law during the 2019 Nevada Legislature.
Because of the generosity of our member stations we continue to assist non-profits and state agencies in communicating their messages to television viewers and radio listeners throughout the state. One of those campaigns resulted in this Association winning an Emmy for the production of a documentary on the opioid crisis.
Throughout 2019 we continued our Alternative Broadcast Inspection Program (ABIP), a program which is free to members of the Nevada Broadcasters Association and we continued to facilitate the state’s EAS and Amber Alert systems.
We had one of the most successful Hall of Fame Galas in the history of the Nevada Broadcasters Association. With your support we have made it possible to distribute 168 scholarships to deserving Nevada students, enabling them to attend a Nevada college or university. And we're pleased to announce that our Board of Directors approved the hiring of a permanent staff member to assist in the administration and development of our Foundation and the Tony and Linda Bonnici Scholarship Program.
I’d like to thank the NVBA Board of Directors, the Executive Board, prior Chairwoman Viola Cody and current Chairman Chris Way for their outstanding leadership.