Sinclair To Surrender Licenses To Three TV Stations, Blames New FCC TV Ownership Restrictions
May 30, 2014 at 3:59 AM (PT)
In order to comply with the FCC's recent rule change putting joint sales agreements and television duopolies under stricter scrutiny, SINCLAIR BROADCAST GROUP has informed the FCC that it will take the extreme step of surrendering the licenses of three stations it says it cannot sell.
SINCLAIR says it will shut down ABC affiliates WCIV-TV/CHARLESTON, SC and BIRMINGHAM market ABC simulcast WJSU-TV/ANNISTON-WCFT-TV/TUSCALOOSA (ALABAMA'S 33/40), which it needs to spin off to put the company in compliance with ownership restrictions after the acquisition of the ALLBRITTON COMMUNICATIONS stations for $985 million, because it has been unable to find buyers.
In a joint statement, Commissioners AJIT PAI and MIKE O'RIELLY noted that they had warned of stations going out of business due to the new rules and noted that the stations being shut had been proposed to be spun to an African-American-owned company.