FCC Schedules Auction 109 for Commercial AM/FM Permits

Posted on February 23rd, 2021 by

The FCC has announced Auction 109 for four commercial AM and 136 commercial FM construction permits, and requested comment on proposed bidding procedures.  This auction replaces Auction 106, originally scheduled and cancelled in 2020 due to COVID.  The permits available can be reviewed at this link.

The filing window for short form applications to qualify for the auction has not yet been announced, but the auction itself will begin on July 27, 2021.  In the weeks prior to the auction, the FCC will announce deadlines for upfront payments, which have already been determined and are shown in the list of available permits.

For interested parties that filed initial short-form applications for Auction 106 in 2020, all of those applications have been dismissed and are not accessible.  New short form applications will need to be filed.  That auction did not include AM construction permits.  The four AM construction permits added to Auction 109 are from previously licensed AM stations whose pending license renewal applications were dismissed and the call signs deleted in an administrative hearing proceeding.

In connection with the Auction 109 notice, the FCC announced a freeze for applications proposing to modify any of the vacant FM allotments to be auctioned, petitions/proposals to change a channel, class, community or reference coordinates for any of the FM allotments, and any applications, petitions and counterproposals that fail to fully protect any Auction 109 FM allotment.

As is the norm in FCC auctions, applicants are solely responsible for due diligence related to the available permits.