The 39-month broadcast TV repack process will be really hard.
That’s a message that the NAB wants the FCC to digest and agree with. To make its point known, the industry’s chief lobbying force in Washington, D.C., took to YouTube to upload a 2 1/2 minute video that explains why the FCC’s efforts to relocate local TV broadcasters into a smaller television band following the recently completed incentive auction will involve a host of challenges.
The short 2 1/2 minute video highlights some of the possible issues facing the FCC, local TV broadcasters and what the NAB says are “millions of viewers” as the Commission attempts to replace or adapt broadcast television antennas as part of the incentive auction “repack.”
With the conclusion of the spectrum auction by the FCC, some 987 TV stations must move channels to make room for wireless carriers.
“Due to the high number of TV stations being relocated, the work and time necessary to complete the moves will far exceed the budget allocated by the Broadcaster Relocation Fund authorized by Congress,” the NAB asserts. “Congress should pass legislation to ensure their constituents do not lose access to local television and radio stations during this mandated station relocation due to a lack of funds or unreasonable time constraints for station relocation.”
The video warns that “some radio stations could off the air for days.”
One TV tower that is “a beast” is highlighted. It has five antennas for five different TV stations that are owned by three different companies. It also has an FM radio station transmitter on this single tower.
“How in the world do you get a 20,000-pound antenna that’s 2,000 feet in the air to the ground safely,” the video’s host asks. “Note to self: This is going to be hard!”
All of the stations moving to a lower frequency, or channel, will need a larger antenna. This means the whole tower will need to be “beefed up” to handle the weight.
This means “a lot more money, and time,” the host notes.
To view the NAB’s video, click here: