ATVA: Big Station Group Members Shouldn't Get Small Business COVID-19 Aid

The American Television Alliance has urged Congress to reject the request by broadcasters that TV stations be counted individually in terms of eligibility for COVID-19 small business aid, even if they are part of a large broadcast group. 

Related: Stations Seek Billions in COVID-19 Ad Spend

ATVA, including members ACA Connects and satellite providers, have been in a running battle with broadcasters over retransmission consent issues and the money broadcasters are asking for carriage, so this is a new front. 

"Congress established the new Paycheck Protection Plan (PPP) to provide relief to small businesses with fewer than 500 employees suffering due to the coronavirus pandemic, but the NAB wants to change the rules to allow large station groups like Hearst, Tegna, Sinclair, and Nexstar to participate," said ATVA. 

Related: All the Latest News on COVID-19 Impact on Industry 

The National Association of Black Owned Broadcasters also argues stations should qualify individually. 

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.