Sens. Seek Time, Money For Post-Spectrum Auction Move

A bipartisan group of Senators has filed an amendment that would use the MOBILE Now Act as a vehicle to give broadcasters more time and money to make the post-incentive auction transition.

The amendment could still be withdrawn or defeated, but if it were approved, it would boost the relocation fund by a billion dollars from $1.75 billion to $2.75 billion and give broadcasters six years rather than three years to make the transition.

The goal is to ensure that no TV station is forced to stop broadcasting due to circumstances beyond its control.

Filing the amendment were Sens. Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), Tom Udall (D-N.M.), Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.).

The Senate Commerce Committee is scheduled to mark up the MOBILE NOW Act Thursday, March 3.

The MOBILE NOW Act is meant to light a fire under next-generation 5G wireless gigabit broadband service and directs various federal agencies to evaluate spectrum bands for 5G, including high-band millimeter wave frequencies.

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.