Sections 74.1203(a)(3), Interference, and 74.1204(f), Protection of FM broadcast, FM Translator and LP100 stations

OMB 3060-1263

OMB 3060-1263

On May 9, 2019, the Commission adopted a Report and Order, Amendment of Part 74 of the Commission’s Rules Regarding FM Translator Interference, FCC 19-40, MB Docket No. 18-119, adopting proposals to streamline the rules relating to interference caused by FM translators and to expedite the translator interference complaint resolution process. These measures are designed to limit or avoid protracted and contentious interference disputes, provide translator licensees additional investment certainty and flexibility to remediate interference, and provide affected stations earlier and expedited resolution of interference complaints. Under this new information collection, the following information collection requirements require OMB approval. Specifically, the FM Translator Interference Report and Order pertains to this new Information Collection as it codifies the translator interference listener complaint requirements under section 74.1201(k) and sections 74.1203(a)(3) (actual interference) and 74.1204(f) (predicted interference) of the rules. The Commission defines the requirements for a listener complaint submitted with a translator interference claim in section 74.1201(k) as a complaint that is signed and dated by the listener and contains the following information: (1) the complainant’s full name, address, and phone number; (2) a clear, concise, and accurate description of the location where the interference is alleged or predicted to occur; (3) a statement that the complainant listens to the desired station using an over-the-air signal at least twice a month, to demonstrate the complainant is a regular listener; and (4) a statement that the complainant has no legal, employment, financial, or familial affiliation or relationship with the desired station, to demonstrate the complainant is disinterested. Electronic signatures are acceptable for this purpose. The FM Translator Interference Report and Order establishes a minimum number of listener complaints, ranging from 6 to 25, depending on the population served within the protected contour of the complaining station. The Commission explains that a proportionate approach, which was supported by multiple commenters, would be fairer and more effective than a single minimum number for all complaining stations. In addition to the required minimum number of valid listener complaints, a station submitting a translator interference claim package pursuant to either section 74.1203(a)(3) or 74.1204(f) must include: (1) a map plotting the specific locations of the alleged interference in relation to the 45 dBu contour of the complaining station; (2) a statement that the complaining station is operating within its licensed parameters; (3) a statement that the complaining station licensee has used commercially reasonable efforts to inform the relevant translator licensee of the claimed interference and attempted private resolution; and (4) U/D data demonstrating that at each listener location the ratio of undesired to desired signal strength exceeds -20 dB for co-channel situations, -6 dB for first-adjacent channel situations or 40 dB for second- or third-adjacent channel situations, calculated using the Commission’s standard contour prediction methodology set out in section 73.313. In the FM Translator Interference Report and Order, the Commission outlines two paths for resolving interference if the translator decides to continue operation on its original channel. First, a translator operator may resolve each listener complaint by working with a willing listener to resolve reception issues. The translator operator must then document and certify that the desired station can now be heard on the listener’s receiver, i.e., that the adjustment to or replacement of the listener’s receiving equipment actually resolved the interference.

The latest form for Sections 74.1203(a)(3), Interference, and 74.1204(f), Protection of FM broadcast, FM Translator and LP100 stations expires 2022-07-31 and can be found here.

OMB Details

Sections 74.1203(a)(3), Interference, and 74.1204(f), Protection of FM broadcast, FM Translator and LP100 stations

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