Capitol Hill and the FCC will both be featuring events of importance to television broadcasters next week. As it did with audio last month, the Communications & Technology Subcommittee of the House Energy & Commerce Committee will hold a hearing on the “Future of Video” next Wednesday. Chairman Greg Walden noted, “Since the passage of the 1992 Cable Act there has been a sea change in the way that consumers gain access to video content. On June 27, the subcommittee will examine how advances in consumer electronics, broadcasting, cable, satellite, the Internet and other platforms are changing how consumers access video content, how those changes are impacted by existing regulations, and what type of regimes should apply going forward."
Earlier in the week, the FCC will hold a “TV Broadcaster Relocation Fund Workshop.” In a preparatory step towards an auction of television spectrum, this workshop will focus on plans for reimbursing costs of full power and Class A TV broadcasters that get repacked to a new channel as a result of an auction. The legislation authorizing a new auction established a $1.75 billion TV Broadcaster Relocation Fund for this purpose. In its release, the FCC notes, “Panelists will discuss the categories of costs that they believe the FCC should consider when designing the program.”
By Aaron Mercer, Vice President Government Relations