2nd Post-TV Auction Priority Window Closes Nov 2; Temporary Freeze Lift Coming for Non-Repacked Stations

Posted on October 31st, 2017 by

The FCC’s previously announced second priority filing window for all full power and Class A TV stations making a post-auction channel change will end at 11:59 p.m. on November 2, 2017. Several stations have already filed applications seeking pattern changes and power increases. If your station is being repacked, or is otherwise changing channels post-auction, don’t miss this opportunity to apply for expanded facilities. Stations must pay an application filing fee and the cost of expanded facilities will not be reimbursed (i.e., this is elective).

For all those full power and Class A stations who are not being repacked, but have been wanting to seek expanded facilities since the FCC’s April 2013 imposed freeze on such expansions, your chance is around the corner. In an unusual move, the FCC issued a notice announcing that it will (but not yet) temporarily lift the freeze for these stations to seek expanded facilities. One of the reasons for doing so is the FCC’s coming displacement filing window for LPTV stations and TV translators. That window is slated for sometime in late March 2018. By allowing non-repacked full power and Class A stations to seek expanded facilities before the LPTV window, the FCC is seeking to lessen the likelihood that newly permitted LPTV facilities will be further displaced by new full power and Class A filings after the LPTV window.

We anticipate that the FCC will formally do so by an additional notice shortly after the 2nd priority filing window ends. Expansions by non-repacked stations will have to protect those post-auction TV applications that were previously filed.