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FCC Silder

FCC Alert: File Biennial Ownership Reports

NRB wants to remind all broadcast members of their obligations to file their 2021 biennial ownership reports with the FCC by December 1, 2021.

The Federal Communication Commission’s (FCC) Media Bureau recently issued a public notice reminding commercial and noncommercial broadcasters of their obligation to file their 2021 biennial ownership reports on FCC Form 323 or 323-E, respectively. In the notice, the FCC stated that it intends to take enforcement actions against stations that fail to file timely, complete reports. In a recent public information session, FCC staff presented an overview of the reporting forms and addressed questions from online attendees. A recording of the session is available here.

Ensuring that your station’s biennial ownership report is timely filed is even more important during the license renewal cycle. Stations must certify on their renewal applications that they have filed their biennial reports as required by the Commission’s rules or disclose violations. Failing to file ownership reports on time can raise issues for stations during the license renewal process, including potential processing delays. Please note this reminder from the FCC that, as part of FCC review of license renewal applications, staff will be reviewing whether licensees have filed their 2019 and 2021 biennial ownership reports and whether they have certified truthfully concerning compliance with the filing requirement. In addition to taking enforcement actions against broadcasters that fail to file timely and complete biennial ownership reports, the FCC may take additional actions against any broadcaster that makes a false certification on its renewal application regarding the filing of the reports.

The FCC regards reporting ownership information as a fundamental obligation of broadcast licensees, so it is important to timely file your reports. For further information about biennial ownership reports, please visit the Media Bureau’s Form 323/323-E website, which has links to forms and instructions, FAQs, and information sessions. If you have questions, please contact your station’s legal counsel.

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