The FCC today expanded the site locations where FM translators can rebroadcast AM radio stations. The amended rule provide s greater flexibility for an AM station to place a rebroadcasting FM translator in a location where it will better serve its AM station’s listeners. AM radio stations that want to improve their service area with a clearer signal can do so by using an FM translator, which receives the AM signal and re -broadcasts it on an FM frequency. This is particularly useful for the many AM stations forced to reduce their power at night, since the FM translator can operate at the same power 24 hours a day. At issue is a current FCC rule that may make finding a location for these translators unnecessarily challenging. Under the old rule, an AM station could place a rebroadcasting FM translator either within its daytime service contour or within a 25 -mile radius of its transmitter, whichever distance was less. The new rule allows the rebroadcasting FM translator to be located anywhere within the AM station’s daytime service contour or anywhere within a 25-mile radius of the transmitter, even if the contour extends farther than 25 miles from the transmitter.
Attachments:News Release [265 KB PDF]
Statement of Chairman Pai [63 KB PDF]
Statement of Commissioner Clyburn [71 KB PDF]
Second Report and Order [130 KB PDF]
Date of Rule Change [127 KB PDF]