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Community Broadcasters Protection Act of 1999 Enacted November 29, 1999 New Class A TV Service Measure of primary status for qualifying LPTV licensees Statutory Qualifications Criteria for Class A Status During 90-day period before 11/29/99, the LPTV station must have:

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community broadcasters protection act of 1999
Community Broadcasters Protection Act of 1999

Enacted November 29, 1999

New Class A TV Service

Measure of primary status for qualifying LPTV licensees

statutory qualifications criteria for class a status
Statutory Qualifications Criteria for Class A Status

During 90-day period before 11/29/99, the LPTV station must have:

(1) operated at least 18 hours each day

(2) broadcast, on average, at least 3 hours per week of programming produced within the market area served by the station

(3) complied with FCC’s LPTV rules

fcc class a tv report order in mm docket no 00 10
FCC Class A TV Report & Order in MM Docket No. 00-10
  • Adopted March 28, 2000
  • Available at (.doc or .pfd)
  • Published in Federal Register May 10, 2000 at 65 FR 29985
who may apply for an initial class a authorization
Who may apply for an initial Class A authorization?

Only an LPTV licensee granted a Certification of Eligibility for Class A status

who will be granted a certificate of eligibility for class a status
Who Will Be Granted a Certificate of Eligibility for Class A Status?
  • LPTV licensees who filed a “Statement of Eligibility for Class A LPTV Status” by January 28, 2000 and
  • Certified “yes” to the 3 statutory qualifications criteria or
  • Could not meet these qualifications due to compelling circumstances
service area preservation of certified class a lptv stations
Service Area Preservation of “Certified Class A” LPTV Stations
  • From date of receipt of a certification of eligibility that is ultimately granted until final resolution of a Class A application
  • Service area to be preserved is LPTV protected signal contour
  • If LPTV operator holds both license and modified construction permit, contour of permit facilities will be preserved
what is locally produced programming
What is “Locally Produced” Programming?
  • Programming produced within the LPTV “market area”, defined as the station’s predicted Grade B signal contour
  • Or within the Grade B contours of a group of commonly controlled stations
  • For example, programming may be produced at the LPTV main studio within the Grade B contour or at a “grandfathered” studio outside the Grade B contour
class a operating requirements
Class A Operating Requirements
  • Per statute, LPTV station must meet full-power TV operating requirements upon filing of Class A application
  • Exceptions are TV broadcast rules that cannot be met for technical reasons (e.g., no community coverage requirement)
  • Class A stations must operate within effective radiated power limits of the LPTV service
example of other exceptions to class a compliance with full service tv rules
Example of Other Exceptions to Class A Compliance with Full-Service TV Rules
  • Grandfather use of LPTV station main studios located outside of Grade B contour
  • Grandfather use of LPTV transmitters (no proof of performance required)
  • Class A stations operate on frequencies not included in the TV or DTV allotment tables
  • Initial Class A facilities may operate without a carrier frequency offset
examples of required compliance with full service tv rules
Examples of Required Compliance with Full-service TV Rules
  • Must operate a main studio
  • Must maintain a public file
  • Must comply with children’s programming requirements
  • Must comply with all equipment and operational requirements of Emergency Alert System
apply on fcc form 302 ca
Apply on FCC Form 302-CA
  • Certifications of compliance
    • Eligibility qualifications
    • TV broadcast operating rules
    • Interference protection requirements
  • No facilities changes permitted in initial Class A applications
uses of form 302 ca
Uses of Form 302-CA
  • Direct conversion of LPTV license to Class A license
  • Conversion of construction permit of licensed LPTV station to Class A status, followed by another filing of Form 302-CA for license once construction completed
what if your lptv station doesn t meet all interference protection requirements for class a status
What if Your LPTV Station Doesn’t Meet All Interference Protection Requirements for Class A status?
  • May file Form 346 as LPTV displacement application, requesting channel or other facilities changes to provide necessary interference protections
  • Simultaneously file Form 302-CA, basing interference protection certifications on the facilities proposed in the displacement relief application
summary of stations protected against interference from class a stations
Summary of Stations Protected Against Interference From Class A Stations
  • Analog (NTSC) TV Stations (Grade B contour protection)
  • LPTV and Translator Stations (Contour protection)
  • DTV Facilities (Protect Service Population)
    • Facilities of DTV allotment table
    • Authorized DTV facilities
    • DTV Facilities proposed in “maximization” applications filed by May 1, 2000, where a “statement of intent” to file the application was filed by Dec. 1, 1999
  • Land Mobile Radio Operations on Channels 14-20 and Channel 16 in New York (field strength limits at protected 50-mile circle about land mobile city)
class a tv protection to ntsc tv
Class A TV Protection to NTSC TV
  • Protect Grade B contours of facilities authorized as of November 29, 1999
  • Protect Grade B contours of facilities proposed in “change” applications on file as of November 29, 1999
  • Protect facilities in applications for new TV stations that had completed all processing short of grant by November 29, 1999 for which the identity of successful applicant was known as of that date
protected applications for new ntsc stations as of 11 29 99 these applications were either
Protected Applications for New NTSC Stations - As of 11/29/99 these applications were either:
  • Auction winners
  • Proposed for grant in settlements among competing applicants
  • Singleton applications cutoff from competing applications
ntsc tv protection from class a tv
NTSC TV Protection from Class A TV
  • Protection based on the desired-to-undesired (D/U) signal strength ratios and minimum distance separation requirements in Section 74.705 of the LPTV rules
  • Waivers may be requested based on terrain shielding and alternative propagation methods (e.g., Longely-Rice model and OET Bulletin #69 methods)
  • Applicants may negotiate interference agreements with affected parties
frequency offset operation
Frequency Offset Operation
  • Co-channel D/U ratio is 45 dB where Class A station operates without 10 kHz offset or on same offset as other NTSC station
  • Ratio of 28 dB between stations operating on different offsets
  • Class A licensees required to specify carrier offset when seeking facilities increases
dtv protections
DTV Protections
  • Class A TV applicants must authorized DTV service and also service of allotted facilities that have yet to be authorized or applied for
  • Class A stations must not interfere with modified DTV allotments to fix technical problems
class a stations must protect dtv service on post transition channels
Class A Stations Must Protect DTV Service on Post-transition Channels
  • Class A stations must protect service on DTV station’s final in-core DTV channel at the end of the DTV transition period
  • A DTV station’s maximized service area may be carried to the station’s final DTV channel provided the station:
    • can meet the FCC’s DTV interference protection rules
    • met the maximization notification and filing deadlines on its assigned DTV channel and
    • meets station construction deadlines on the channel for which maximization requested
dtv protection method
DTV Protection Method
  • Protect the population within the DTV noise-limited service area, not already predicted to receive interference from other sources, based on the criteria in Sections 73.622 and 73.623 of the FCC rules and OET Bulletin # 69 (with a population reduction rounding allowance of 0.5%
class a protection to dtv
Class A Protection to DTV

Class A station interference cannot decrease population in the DTV service area (shaded) by more than 0.5% (rounding error)

DTV Interference-Free Reception Area

DTV Noise-limited Contour; Comparable to NTSC Grade B

class a must protect service contours of tv translators and non class a lptv stations
Class A Must Protect Service Contours of TV Translators and non Class A LPTV Stations
  • Protect LPTV and TV translator stations authorized licenses or construction permits before the filing of the Class A application
  • Protect facilities proposed in LPTV & translator applications filed earlier than the Class A application
example of class a protection of lptv station
Example of Class A Protection of LPTV Station

74dBu protected contour for UHF LPTV station

Class A


Interference-limited Contour

(46 dBu for co-channel station operating on a frequency offset basis)

class a protection of tv translators and lptv stations
Class A Protection of TV Translators and LPTV Stations
  • Contour protection based on the D/U ratios in § 74.707 of the LPTV rules
  • “Grandfather” predicted interference to later-authorized stations LPTV & translator stations
  • Waivers of protection standards may be supported by alternative methods such as terrain shielding and “Longley-Rice” propagation model
  • Parties may negotiate interference agreements
class a protection to land mobile radio
Class A Protection to Land Mobile Radio
  • Must protect land mobile use of channels 14-20 in several metropolitan areas and also channel 16 use in the New York City area
  • Protection to 80-mile circle around the reference coordinates of these metropolitan areas
  • Protection criteria limits predicted field strengths of co-channel and adjacent channel Class A stations at the 80 mile circle (See § 74.709 of LPTV rules)
The Following Entities Must Protect the Initial Service Contours of Class A Designated LPTV Stations
  • Most applicants and allotment petitioners for new TV stations, except as noted above
  • Full-service TV minor change applicants filing applications after 11/29/99
  • DTV maximization applicants filing applications after May 1, 2000 (continued)
protection to initial class a service contours by
Protection to Initial Class A Service Contours By
  • Petitioners for DTV allotments other than those necessary to fix technical problems; e.g., petitions for new DTV channel by new entrants
  • Applicants for new or modified LPTV or TV translator stations filing applications after the date the Class A designated LPTV station has been granted a “certification of eligibility”
class a tv protected contours
Class A TV Protected Contours

(Same as the LPTV protected contours defined in § 74.707 of FCC rules)

62 dBu Channels 2 - 6

68 dBu Channels 7 - 13

74 dBu Channels 14 - 51

methods of protecting class a stations
Methods of Protecting Class A Stations
  • NTSC TV - contour protection (D/U ratios and distance separations of Section 74.705)
  • LPTV and TV translators - contour protection (D/U ratios of Section 74.707)
  • Class A to Class A - LPTV contour protection (D/U ratios of Section 74.707)
  • DTV - contour protection (D/U ratios of Section 73.623 for “digital into analog”)
alternative methods of meeting requirements to protect class a stations
Alternative Methods of Meeting Requirements to Protect Class A Stations
  • Waiver requests supported by
    • Terrain shielding
    • Longely-Rice propagation model
    • OET Bulletin 69 method with a 0.5% population reduction rounding tolerance
  • Interference agreements among affected parties
class a tv displacement relief
Class A TV Displacement Relief
  • Generally, existing LPTV displacement relief policies apply to displaced Class A stations
  • Displacement could be due to actual or predicted interference caused or received by a Class A station
  • May file for replacement channels and/or other related facilities changes on a “first-come” basis outside of filing windows
  • Application is styled as a major change
class a tv translator and lptv displacement applications
Class A, TV Translator and LPTV Displacement Applications
  • Generally, displacement applications, whether Class A, LPTV or TV translator, have higher priority than earlier-filed non displacement applications for new or modified facilities in these services
  • Among displacement applications, the earliest filed has priority
  • Displacement applications filed on the same day are subject to competitive bidding procedures
lptv and tv translator stations with licenses or construction permits for channels 52 69
LPTV and TV Translator Stations With Licenses or Construction Permits for Channels 52-69
  • Presumption of channel displacement extended to channels 52-59
  • Licensees and permittees may file displacement application requesting replacement channel at any time after effective date of Class A Report & Order
lptv stations licensed on channels 52 69
LPTV Stations Licensed on Channels 52-69
  • Class A TV may be authorized only on channels 2-51 (“core” channels)
  • Service contours of LPTV stations on channels 52-69 are not afforded Class A interference protections
  • To attain a Class A authorization, LPTV licensees must have been granted a certificate of eligibility and a channel below 52
class a eligible lptv stations licensed on channels 52 69
Class A Eligible LPTV Stations Licensed on Channels 52-69
  • Must simultaneously file Forms 346, requesting channel below 52, and Form 302-CA
  • Per the Class A statute, a Class A authorization will be granted simultaneously with the grant of the LPTV displacement application
  • Not required to file applications within the 6-month window for filing initial Class A applications
lptv displacement relief applications of class a certified eligible stations
LPTV Displacement Relief Applications of Class A Certified-Eligible Stations
  • May file displacement application as mutually exclusive “counter proposal” to petition for modified NTSC TV channel allotment
  • Do do so, application must be filed before the end of the initial comment period in the Notice of Proposed Rule Making of the allotment proceeding
lptv displacement relief applications of class a certified eligible stations38
LPTV Displacement Relief Applications of Class A Certified-Eligible Stations
  • Full power TV permittees and licensees may file petitions for modified NTSC channel allotments that would be mutually exclusive with an LPTV displacement application
  • Petitions must be filed within 30 days of issuance of the Public Notice proposing grant of the displacement application
minor facilities changes for class a tv lptv and tv translators
“Minor” Facilities Changes for Class A TV, LPTV and TV Translators
  • Under the new, more inclusive definition, all facilities changes other than channel changes may be filed as “minor changes” and at any time provided,
  • Proposals to relocate antenna sites must result in some overlap of the modified and original protected contours
minor change applications
Minor Change Applications
  • A “first-come/first-served” rule will apply among minor change applications filed by Class A stations and among applications of Class A, LPTV and TV translator stations
  • TV translator and non Class A LPTV minor change applications must protect earlier and later-filed NTSC TV minor change applicatons
minor change applications41
Minor Change Applications
  • Class A and full-power NTSC TV minor change applications may become mutually exclusive (can’t grant both due to interference conflict) until the grant date of the Class A or NTSC minor change application
  • Example: Final processing check shows no predicted interference overlap with NTSC minor change application - therefore, ok to grant Class A minor change application
minor change applications42
Minor Change Applications
  • The filing of minor change applications under the more inclusive definition is deferred until October 1, 2000
  • Until then, minor change applications may continue to be filed under the current definition (that is, facility changes producing modified protected signal contours falling within the existing protected contour)
additional digital tv licenses for class a and tv translator stations
Additional Digital TV Licenses for Class A and TV Translator Stations
  • Per the CBPA, the FCC is not required to issue additional licenses, but shall accept applications for such service that will not cause interference to the service area of any broadcast facility applied for, protected, permitted or authorized on the date of filing of the digital application
additional licenses for digital class a and tv translator stations
Additional Licenses for Digital Class A and TV Translator Stations
  • Must await a future rulemaking to develop rules, policies and procedures
  • A Class A TV station may seek on-channel conversion to DTV at any time by filing a minor change application
  • Digital Class A stations subject to DTV transmission standard
class a application filing period
Class A Application Filing Period
  • Begins 30 days after Report & Order published in Federal Register, which occurred May 10, 2000
  • Ends 6 months from that date
  • No time limit for filing initial Class A application for certified-eligible LPTV stations now authorized on channels 52-69
fee information for fcc form 302 ca
Fee Information for FCC Form 302-CA
  • Fee amount: $220
  • Fee type code: MJT
processing of applications for initial class a authorizations
Processing of Applications for Initial Class A Authorizations
  • Per CBPA, FCC must act on acceptable applications within 30 days after receipt
  • A “substantially complete” application acceptance standard will apply
  • Informal objections may be filed against the applications
what happens next
What Happens Next
  • FCC to announce availability of Class A application Form 302-CA
  • FCC to announce LPTV licensees granted certificate of eligibility to apply for Class A authorization