FCC Seeks Comment on Auction Reimbursement Form

The FCC has released a draft of the form broadcasters and cable operators will use to seek reimbursement for costs related to repacking after the broadcast incentive auction.

It actually calls "The TV Broadcaster Relocation Fund Reimbursement Form," though in the next line points out it is for both broadcasters and MVPD's, the latter which will only need a fraction of the $1.75 billion fund for adjusting head ends.

The form will be used to establish a Treasury payment account, provide cost estimates for new or modified equipment, document actual costs throughout the process and a final total of costs incurred.

The FCC has already said it will publicize how much each station gets from the fund, but it wants to know what if any other info on the form should be considered confidential.

The FCC released a copy of the form, but points out it is only a representation of the online data fields and that the form will be an electronic one.

The FCC is seeking input before it submits the form to the Office of Management and Budget, which has to approve all new data collection efforts per the Paperwork Reduction Act, so there will be a second opportunity to comment during that process.

The docket number for the comments is 12-268.

The FCC has set a mid-2015 target for the auction, but has until 2022 to complete the repacking process.

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.