2018 FCC Compliance Deadlines for Georgia Stations

2018 FCC Compliance Deadlines for Georgia Stations

This calendar is similar to the official NAB Calendar for 2018, but has been tailored for use by Georgia broadcast stations. Courtesy David O’Connor, partner Wilkinson, Barker, Knauer, LLP

January

January 8 – Effective date of the FCC’s elimination of the main studio requirements.
January 10 – All full power and Class A television stations that are being repacked must electronically file an FCC Form 2100-Schedule 387 Transition Progress Report. This form is used to provide an update on the station’s efforts to construct facilities for its new channel and the termination of operations on its current channel. Such reports must be filed on a quarterly basis until the station has completed its transition and has filed a final report indicating that fact. In addition to these quarterly reports, a repacked station must file a Schedule 387 report 10 weeks before the end of its assigned construction deadline, 10 days after completion of all work related to constructing facilities on its new channel, and 5 days after ceasing operations on its pre-auction channel.
January 10 – FCC Form 398 Children’s Television Programming Reports. All commercial television stations (including Class A television stations) must electronically file an FCC Form 398 Children’s Programming Report for the fourth quarter of 2017 (October 1-December 31). A copy of the form will be automatically uploaded by the FCC to the station’s public inspection file. TV stations are reminded to periodically publicize the existence and location of the station’s Form 398 reports, in the form of periodic on-air announcements and website information.

 January 10 – Children’s Television Commercial Limitations Certification. All commercial full-power television stations and Class A television stations must sign a certification of compliance with the FCC’s commercial limitations during children’s television programming aired in the fourth quarter of 2017 (October 1-December 31). The certification of compliance must be manually uploaded to the station’s online public file. TV stations also must complete a certification of compliance with the requirements concerning the display of website addresses during children’s programming; however,there does not appear to be any place to upload the website address certification. It appears that stations can elect to either upload such certifications along with their commercial limits certifications, or retain the website certifications in their private records. 

 January 10 – Quarterly Issues Programs Lists. All radio and television broadcast stations, both commercial and noncommercial, must prepare and place in their public inspection files a list of important issues facing their communities, and the programs aired in the months of October, November and December 2017 dealing with those issues. All TV stations, and radio stations that have converted to online public files, should place these quarterly issues programs lists in their FCC-hosted online public inspection file. All other radio stations should continue placing copies of their quarterly issues programs lists in their paper public inspection file until they convert to using the online public file. (The deadline for making this conversion is March 1, 2018 as noted below).

 January 10 – All noncommercial educational radio and television stations that are not affiliated with NPR or CPB, and that suspended regular programming to conduct third- party fundraising for the benefit of a non-profit organization, must generate relevant documentation for the period November 13-December 31, 2017 and place it in their public inspection file by this date. Such stations can devote no more than 1% of their total airtime to such fundraising efforts.
 January 18 – Filing Freeze begins for FM Translator, Low Power FM, and FM booster applications; freeze is lifted February 1, 2018.
January 25-31 – Filing window for eligible AM station licensees to file applications for new FM translator facilities.

February

None

March

 March 1 – Deadline for all radio stations, both commercial and noncommercial, to begin using their FCC-hosted online public inspection files.
March 2 – Deadline for all radio and television stations, both commercial and noncommercial, to file their biennial ownership reports. Information in the ownership reports must be accurate as of October 1, 2017.
 March 11 – Daylight Saving Time begins. Daytime-only radio stations and stations with pre-sunrise and/or post-sunset authorizations should check their sign-on and sign-off times on their current FCC authorizations to ensure compliance. All times listed on FCC licenses are in Standard Time.

April

April 7 – LUC Period for Georgia Statewide/Congressional Primaries begins.  The Lowest Unit Charge (LUC) period for statewide/congressional primaries in Georgia begins Saturday, April 7, which is 45 days before the primary scheduled for May 22.

April 9-12 – NAB Show, Las Vegas, Nevada  
April 10 – All full power and Class A television stations that are being repacked must electronically file an FCC Form 2100-Schedule 387 Transition Progress Report. This form is used to provide an update on the station’s efforts to construct facilities for its new channel and the termination of operations on its current channel. Such reports must be filed on a quarterly basis until the station has completed its transition and has filed a final report indicating that fact. In addition to these quarterly reports, a repacked station must file a Schedule 387 report 10 weeks before the end of its assigned construction deadline, 10 days after completion of all work related to constructing facilities on its new channel, and 5 days after ceasing operations on its pre-auction channel.
April 10 – FCC Form 398 Children’s Television Programming Reports. All commercial television stations, including Class A television stations, must electronically file an FCC Form 398 Children’s Programming Report for the first quarter of 2018 (January 1-March 31). A copy of the form will be automatically uploaded by the FCC to the station’s public inspection file. TV stations are reminded to periodically publicize the existence and location of the station’s Form 398 reports, in the form of periodic on-air announcements and website information.
April 10 – Children’s Television Commercial Limitations Certification. All commercial full-power television stations and Class A television stations must sign a certification of compliance with the FCC’s commercial limitations during children’s television programming aired in the first quarter of 2018 (January 1-March 31). The certification of compliance must be manually uploaded to the station’s online public file. TV stations also must complete a certification of compliance with the requirements concerning the display of website addresses during children’s programming; however, there does not appear to be any place to upload the website address certification. It appears that stations can elect to either upload such certifications along with their commercial limits certifications, or retain the website certifications in their private records.
April 10 – All noncommercial educational radio and television stations that are not affiliated with NPR or CPB, and that suspended regular programming to conduct third- party fundraising for the benefit of a non-profit organization, must generate relevant documentation for the period January 1-March 31, 2018 and place it in their public inspection file by this date. Such stations can devote no more than 1% of their total airtime to such fundraising efforts.
April 10 – Quarterly Issues Programs Lists. All radio and television broadcast stations, both commercial and noncommercial, must prepare and place in their public inspection files a list of important issues facing their communities, and the programs aired in the months of January, February and March dealing with those issues. Television and radio stations should place these quarterly issues programs lists in their FCC-hosted online public inspection file.

May

May 24 – Statewide/Congressional primaries in Georgia

May 26 – Beginning on this date, television stations must comply with the FCC’s Audible Crawl Rule, which requires that emergency information provided visually during  non-newscast video programming (such as radar maps or other graphic displays) must be made aurally accessible through a secondary audio stream.

June

June 9 – LUC Period for Georgia Statewide/Congressional Runoffs (if necessary) begins.  The Lowest Unit Charge (LUC) period for statewide/congressional runoffs, if necessary, begins Saturday, June 9, which is 45 days before the runoff scheduled for July 24.

None

July

July 1 – ABC, CBS, Fox, and NBC affiliated television stations in the top 60 Nielsen markets must increase their video-described programming each quarter from 50 hours to 87.5 hours.
July 10 – All full power and Class A television stations that are being repacked must electronically file an FCC Form 2100-Schedule 387 Transition Progress Report. This form is used to provide an update on the station’s efforts to construct facilities for its new channel and the termination of operations on its current channel. Such reports must be filed on a quarterly basis until the station has completed its transition and has filed a final report indicating that fact. In addition to these quarterly reports, a repacked station must file a Schedule 387 report 10 weeks before the end of its assigned construction deadline, 10 days after completion of all work related to constructing facilities on its new channel, and 5 days after ceasing operations on its pre-auction channel.
July 10 – FCC Form 398 Children’s Television Programming Reports. All commercial television stations (including Class A television stations) must electronically file an FCC Form 398 Children’s Programming Report for the second quarter of 2018 (April 1-June 30). A copy of the form will be automatically uploaded by the FCC to the station’s public inspection file. TV stations are reminded to periodically publicize the existence and location of the station’s Form 398 reports, in the form of periodic on-air announcements and website information.
July 10 – Children’s Television Commercial Limitations Certification. All commercial full-power television stations and Class A television stations must sign a certification of compliance with the FCC’s commercial limitations during children’s television programming aired in the second quarter of 2018 (April 1-June 30). The certification of compliance must be manually uploaded to the station’s online public file. TV stations also must complete a certification of compliance with the requirements concerning the display of website addresses during children’s programming; however, there does not appear to be any place to upload the website address certification. It appears that stations can elect to either upload such certifications along with their commercial limits certifications, or retain the website certifications in their private records.
July 10 – All noncommercial educational radio and television stations that are not affiliated with NPR or CPB, and that suspended regular programming to conduct third- party fundraising for the benefit of a non-profit organization, must generate relevant documentation for the period April 1-June 30, 2018 and place it in their public inspection
file by this date. Such stations can devote no more than 1% of their total airtime to such fundraising efforts.

 July 10 – Quarterly Issues Programs Lists. All radio and television broadcast stations, both commercial and noncommercial, must prepare and place in their public inspection files a list of important issues facing their communities, and the programs aired in the months of April, May and June dealing with those issues. Television and radio stations should place these quarterly issues programs lists in their FCC-hosted online public inspection file.
July 1-31 – Copyright Royalty Claims. All television stations that were carried as a distant signal by a cable system during 2017 and that aired a program that they produced for which they own the copyright and which was retransmitted by a cable system: File a copyright royalty claim form between July 1-31, 2018, to share in the 2017 cable royalty distribution. Please also refer to the information in the NAB’s Counsel Memo, expected to be published in June/July 2018, for additional details on this subject.

July 24 – Statewide/Congressional runoffs, if necessary.

August

Annual FCC Regulatory Fees. Although the precise dates will not be determined until the summer, the window for paying the FCC’s Annual Regulatory Fees in recent years has been as early as August, but can be in September. Broadcasters must pay their FCC Annual Regulatory Fees by the deadline established by the FCC or incur a 25% penalty. Regulatory fees cover the period from October 1, 2017 through September 30, 2018.

September

September 7 – LUC Period for Georgia Statewide/Congressional General Election begins.  The Lowest Unit Charge (LUC) period for statewide/congressional general election races in Georgia begins Saturday, September 7, which is 60 days before the election date scheduled for November 6.

September 25-28 – NAB Radio Show, Orlando, Florida

October

October 10 – All full power and Class A television stations that are being repacked must electronically file an FCC Form 2100-Schedule 387 Transition Progress Report. This form is used to provide an update on the station’s efforts to construct facilities for its new channel and the termination of operations on its current channel. Such reports must be filed on a quarterly basis until the station has completed its transition and has filed a final report indicating that fact. In addition to these quarterly reports, a repacked station must file a Schedule 387 report 10 weeks before the end of its assigned construction deadline, 10 days after completion of all work related to constructing facilities on its new channel, and 5 days after ceasing operations on its pre-auction channel.
October 10 – FCC Form 398 Children’s Television Programming Reports. All commercial television stations (including Class A television stations) must electronically file an FCC Form 398 Children’s Programming Report for the third quarter of 2018 (July 1-September 30). A copy of the form will be automatically uploaded by the FCC to the station’s public inspection file. TV stations are reminded to periodically publicize the existence and location of the station’s Form 398 reports, in the form of periodic on-air announcements and website information.
October 10 – Children’s Television Commercial Limitations Certification. All commercial full-power television stations and Class A television stations must sign a certification of compliance with the FCC’s commercial limitations during children’s television programming aired in the third quarter of 2018 (July 1-September 30). The certification of compliance must be manually uploaded to the station’s online public file. TV stations also must complete a certification of compliance with the requirements concerning the display of website addresses during children’s programming; however, there does not appear to be any place to upload the website address certification. It appears that stations can elect to either upload such certifications along with their commercial limits certifications, or retain the website certifications in their private records.

October 10 – All noncommercial educational radio and television stations that are not affiliated with NPR or CPB, and that suspended regular programming to conduct third- party fundraising for the benefit of a non-profit organization, must generate relevant documentation for the period July 1-September 30, 2018 and place it in their public inspection file by this date. Such stations can devote no more than 1% of their total airtime to such fundraising efforts.
October 10 – Quarterly Issues Programs Lists. All radio and television broadcast stations, both commercial and noncommercial, must prepare and place in their public inspection files a list of important issues facing their communities, and the programs aired in the months of July, August and September dealing with those issues. Television and radio stations should place these quarterly issues programs lists in their FCC-hosted online public inspection file.

November

November 1 – This is a good time of year to check your tower for FCC and FAA lighting and painting requirements.

November 4 – Daylight Saving Time ends. Daytime-only radio stations and stations with pre-sunrise and/or post-sunset authorizations should check their sign-on and sign-off times on their current FCC authorizations to ensure compliance. All times listed on FCC licenses are in Standard Time.

November 6 –  General election for Georgia statewide/congressional races.

December

December 1 – Unless otherwise waived or eliminated by the FCC, television stations must file an FCC Form 2100-Schedule G (formerly known as FCC Form 317) stating whether the station provided any “ancillary or supplementary services” during the 12- month period ending on September 30, 2018. (This does not include multicast services – only subscriptions services). In 2017, the FCC waived this filing requirement for stations that did not provide ancillary or supplementary services. Stations that provided such services were still required to file the form. Licensees should monitor this issue and plan on filing a form if necessary.

December 1 – Annual EEO Public File Report. Radio and television station employment units in Georgia must place in their online public inspection file an FCC Annual EEO Public File Report, unless the station is exempt from EEO requirements. The report must also be posted on the station’s website, if it has one and is required to prepare the report.

This calendar is intended to be a useful guide to FCC deadlines, but is not intended to be an exhaustive list of required filings.  Filing requirements may change over the year, and new filing requirements may be adopted or eliminated.  Please contact David O’Connor, Washington Counsel for GAB, with any questions about this calendar (202-383-3429, doconnor@wbklaw.com).

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