March 11 Comment Deadline for Application Prioritization Rulemaking

Posted on February 29th, 2024 by

The FCC has announced March 11 as the deadline for filing comments in the pending Notice of Proposed Rulemaking proposing an application prioritization rule based upon applicants certifying that they air certain amounts of local programming.

The FCC’s announced goal with the proposed rule is to incentivize stations to support “local journalism” and provide programming that responds to the needs and interests of the communities they are licensed to serve. However, the rule would only apply to “non-routine” or “complex” renewal, assignment and transfer of control applications.  A “complex” application with a local programming certification would be prioritized over a “complex” application without one.  Whether to provide the certification in these applications will be left to broadcast station discretion.  The NPRM also seeks comment on how to define local programming and how much local programming would have to be aired before a certification can be made.

Reply comments are due April 8, 2024.