NAB Urges Congress Not To Block Media Ownership Changes
June 25, 2008 at 5:12 AM (PT)
The NAB is urging Congress not to stop the FCC from implementing its proposed easing of media ownership rules, reports TVWEEK. As the House Appropriations Committee prepares to vote on legislation that would stop the FCC from acting, NAB Pres./CEO DAVID K. REHR is asking the full committee to reverse course.
He’s calling the FCC’s DECEMBER decision, which would allow newspapers and broadcasters in a given market to buy each other in some circumstances, "a modest relaxation" that "would result in stronger and more sustainable service, as localism is best preserved by permitting broadcasters to compete effectively in the digital multichannel marketplace."
"There is no reason to rescind this modest reform," REHR said. "First, the ban -- adopted in 1975 -- and never reformed is outdated. Second, the FCC’s decision was made after conducting a number of proceedings over more than a decade. Failure to consider and reform the restriction would have violated the agency’s statutory obligation."
Language to block the FCC from spending any money to implement the change was added to the appropriations bill last week by U.S. Rep. JOSÉ SERRANO, (D-NY), during a meeting of a panel of the House Appropriations Committee. The full committee considers the bill TODAY (6/25).