July 31 Deadline for Carriage Election Contact Information

Posted on July 30th, 2020 by

Full power commercial and noncommercial television stations are required to supply a carriage election email address and phone number in their online public file by July 31, 2020.  The FCC issued a reminder public notice about this on July 15, 2020.  To do so, log in to the station online public file and select the “settings” tab. From that screen, select the “cable election contact information” tab and add the required info in the spaces provided. Be sure to save it, or the file won’t update.

Class A TV stations that are qualified for mandatory carriage do not have this data field in their online public file.  Instead, these stations  must ensure that the address and contact information in LMS is accurate for the station.

LPTV stations that are qualified for mandatory carriage have no online public file.  Instead, they must ensure that the address and contact information for the station in LMS is accurate.

Cable and DBS providers will use this contact information in connection with the upcoming 2021-23 three-year carriage election period and for any other notices that are to be given to broadcasters.  Stations should be sure that the email and phone number are monitored and that any contact from such a provider is acknowledged and responded to promptly.

October 1 is still the deadline for eligible stations to make an election between mandatory carriage or retransmission consent for the 2021-23 cycle, but that procedure has been substantially simplified and will be completed in the public file via a “Carriage Election Statement.”  Depending on the type of station, or differences in elections compared to the currently ending 3-year election cycle, stations may also have to send emails to cable or DBS providers notifying them of the election being made.