FCC Proposes Elimination of Form 397 EEO Mid-Term Report

Posted on February 26th, 2018 by

On February 22, 2018, the FCC issued a notice of proposed rulemaking proposing to eliminate the requirement for broadcast stations to file FCC Form 397 EEO Mid-Term Report. Currently, radio stations with eleven or more full-time employees must file the report at the mid-point of their 8-year license term. TV stations must do so if they have five or more full-time employees.

The Form 397 makes various certifications to the FCC about the station’s number of employees, and provides the two most recent EEO public file reports. In the NPRM, the FCC has tentatively concluded that Form 397 should be eliminated, but asks several questions about alternative ways for the FCC to collect employee count info at the mid-point of a station’s license term. With the online public file requirement to post all annual EEO public file reports, it seems to us that the public – and by extension the FCC – has all of the information it needs already. We’re hoping that no “new” regulation is necessary in this instance.