Skip to main content

Martin Says He's Investigating Disappearing Report

FCC Chairman Kevin Martin told Senator Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) Thursday that he was still investigating what happened to a newly resurfaced FCC localism report that didn't make it into the FCC record. But he said that the study was relevant to current localism and ownership proceedings and that he would make it part of the record in both.

Martin was responding to a request from Boxer for answers about the report, which concluded that locally owned stations did more local news than network-owned or "nonlocally owned" stations. Boxer was anonymously sent a copy and produced it theatrically at Martin's renomination hearing this week.

Martin said he had never seen the report. On Thursday, former FCC staff attorney Adam Candeub alleged to B&C that officials at the FCC back in 2004 ordered it to be destroyed. The commission was then headed by Michael Powell, but Candeub said he did not know who had given the order.

"It is unclear why this report was never released to the public," he said. "I am attempting to determine why, but the senior management of the Media Bureau and the chairman of the commission at the time are no longer at the commission."

But he said that he did not know of any past or present commissioners who knew of the report.