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free103point9 Newsroom has moved to http://free103point9.wordpress.com/as of March 18, 2010 A blog for radio artists with transmission art news, open calls, microradio news, and discussion of issues about radio art, creative use of radio, and radio technologies. free103point9 announcements are also included here.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

LPFM bill added as amendment

From Tom Roe:

I have always joked that the current low-power FM bill approved by both Senate and House subcommittees, would only get to the floor if it was attached to some bill like the "death penalty for flag burners."

Well, I almost got my wish this week. Congress is voting on a Constitutional amendment against flag burning, and Senator John McCain has attached the "Local Community Radio Act" to the "Communications, Consumer’s Choice, and Broadband Deployment Act of 2006" (the Senate version of the anti-net neutrality bill), Mediageek reports.

"McCain’s amendment would restore the FCC’s original spacing requirements for the (LPFM) service, allowing LPFM stations to be closer than three adjacent frequencies to other stations," Mediageek reports.

LPFM got through Congress a few years back after focused challenges in the courts, intense lobbying, and thousands of Americans committing civil disobedience on the airwaves. The LPFM service, however, was weakened at the last moment largely due to a fake "interference" claim that has since been scientifically debunked.

Over a thousand new LPFMs would be allowed if this amendment were to be passed and signed. And the phone companies would rule the world/internet.

I almost got my wish/nightmare, and it just gets worse. New Jersey Senator Frank Lautenberg inserted an exception in the LPFM bill for "significantly populated states," according to Inside Radio. The report is vague, but it may mean no low-power stations for New Jersey.

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