FCC Proposes Rules to Reform Procedures on FM Translator Station Complaints

The FCC at its May Open Meeting adopted a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) proposing reforms to the Commission’s current procedures used to resolve complaints of interference caused by FM translator stations. As the NPRM recites, the FM translator service was instituted in 1970 as a way to improve reception of FM radio stations in areas where direct reception was hampered by terrain, distance, or other obstructions. As a secondary service, however, FM translators have always been prohibited from causing interference to the reception of any other broadcast station. In recent years, use of FM translators has expanded greatly, including use of FM translators by AM stations. Along with increased use of FM translators has come increased claims of interference, as well as complaints regarding the Commission’s procedures for resolving those claims. The NPRM, aims to reform a number of these processes. Under the Commission’s existing rules, complaints regarding…

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