Annual EEO Public File Report Deadline for Stations in Alabama, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota, and Vermont
This Broadcast Station Advisory is directed to radio and television stations in the areas noted above, and highlights the upcoming deadlines for compliance with the FCC’s EEO Rule.
December 1, 2017 is the deadline for broadcast stations licensed to communities in Alabama, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota, and Vermont to place their Annual EEO Public File Report in their public inspection file and post the report on their station website. In addition, certain of these stations, as detailed below, must electronically file their EEO Mid-term Report on FCC Form 397 by December 1, 2017.
Under the FCC’s EEO Rule, all radio and television station employment units (“SEUs”), regardless of staff size, must afford equal opportunity to all qualified persons and practice nondiscrimination in employment.
In addition, those SEUs with five or more full-time employees (“Nonexempt SEUs”) must also comply with the FCC’s three-prong outreach requirements. Specifically, Nonexempt SEUs must (i) broadly and inclusively disseminate information about every full-time job opening, except in exigent circumstances, (ii) send notifications of full-time job vacancies to referral organizations that have requested such notification, and (iii) earn a certain minimum number of EEO credits, based on participation in various non-vacancy-specific outreach initiatives (“Menu Options”) suggested by the FCC, during each of the two-year segments (four segments total) that comprise a station’s eight-year license term. These Menu Option initiatives include, for example, sponsoring job fairs, participating in job fairs, and having an internship program.
Nonexempt SEUs must prepare and place their Annual EEO Public File Report in the public inspection files and on the websites of all stations comprising the SEU (if they have a website) by the anniversary date of the filing deadline for that station’s license renewal application. The Annual EEO Public File Report summarizes the SEU’s EEO activities during the previous 12 months, and the licensee must maintain adequate records to document those activities. Nonexempt SEUs must submit to the FCC the two most recent Annual EEO Public File Reports with their license renewal applications.
In addition, all TV station SEUs with five or more full-time employees and all radio station SEUs with more than ten full-time employees must submit to the FCC the two most recent Annual EEO Public File Reports at the midpoint of their eight-year license term along with FCC Form 397—the Broadcast Mid-Term EEO Report.
Exempt SEUs—those with fewer than five full-time employees—do not have to prepare or file Annual or Mid-Term EEO Reports.
For a detailed description of the EEO rule and practical assistance in preparing a compliance plan, broadcasters should consult The FCC’s Equal Employment Opportunity Rules and Policies – A Guide for Broadcasters published by Pillsbury’s Communications Practice Group. This publication is available at: http://www.pillsburylaw.com/publications/broadcasters-guide-to-fcc-equal-employment-opportunity-rules-policies.
Deadline for the Annual EEO Public File Report for Nonexempt Radio and Television SEUs
Consistent with the above, December 1, 2017 is the date by which Nonexempt SEUs of radio and television stations licensed to communities in the states identified above, including Class A television stations, must (i) place their Annual EEO Public File Report in the public inspection files of all stations comprising the SEU, and (ii) post the Report on the websites, if any, of those stations. LPTV stations are also subject to the broadcast EEO rules, even though LPTV stations are not required to maintain a public inspection file. Instead, these stations must maintain a “station records” file containing the station’s authorization and other official documents and must make it available to an FCC inspector upon request. Therefore, if an LPTV station has five or more full-time employees, or is part of a Nonexempt SEU, it must prepare an Annual EEO Public File Report and place it in the station records file.
These Reports will cover the period from December 1, 2016 through November 30, 2017. However, Nonexempt SEUs may “cut off” the reporting period up to ten days before November 30, so long as they begin the next annual reporting period on the day after the cut-off day used in the immediately preceding Report. For example, if the Nonexempt SEU uses the period December 1, 2016 through November 20, 2017 for this year’s report (cutting it off up to ten days prior to November 30, 2017), then next year, the Nonexempt SEU must use a period beginning November 21, 2017 for its report.
Deadline for Performing Menu Option Initiatives
The Annual EEO Public File Report must contain a discussion of the Menu Option initiatives undertaken during the preceding year. The FCC’s EEO rules require each Nonexempt SEU to earn a minimum of two or four Menu Option initiative-related credits during each two-year segment of its eight-year license term, depending on the number of full-time employees and the market size of the Nonexempt SEU.
Nonexempt SEUs with between five and ten full-time employees, regardless of market size, must earn at least two Menu Option credits over each two-year segment.
Nonexempt SEUs with 11 or more full-time employees, located in the “smaller markets,” must earn at least two Menu Option credits over each two-year segment.
Nonexempt SEUs with 11 or more full-time employees, not located in “smaller markets,” must earn at least four Menu Option credits over each two-year segment.
The SEU is deemed to be located in a “smaller market” for these purposes if the communities of license of the stations comprising the SEU are (1) in a county outside of all metropolitan areas, or (2) in a county located in a metropolitan area with a population of less than 250,000 persons.
Because the filing date for license renewal applications varies depending on the state to which a station is licensed, the time period in which Menu Option initiatives must be completed also varies. Radio and television stations licensed to communities in the states identified above should review the following to determine which current two-year segment applies to them:
Nonexempt radio station SEUs licensed to communities in Colorado, Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, and South Dakota must have earned at least the required minimum number of Menu Option credits during the two year “segment” between December 1, 2016 and November 30, 2018, as well as during the previous two-year “segments” of their license terms.
Nonexempt radio station SEUs licensed to communities in Alabama, Connecticut, Georgia, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont must have earned at least the required minimum number of Menu Option credits during the two-year “segment” between December 1, 2015 and November 30, 2017, as well as during the previous two-year “segments” of their license terms.
Nonexempt television station SEUs licensed to communities in Alabama, Connecticut, Georgia, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont must have earned at least the required minimum number of Menu Option credits during the two-year “segment” between December 1, 2016 and November 30, 2018, as well as during the previous two-year “segments” of their license terms.
Nonexempt television station SEUs licensed to communities in Colorado, Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, and South Dakota must have earned at least the required minimum number of Menu Option credits during the two-year “segment” between December 1, 2015 and November 30, 2017, as well as during the previous two-year “segments” of their license terms.
Deadline for Filing EEO Mid-Term Report (FCC Form 397) for Radio Stations Licensed to Communities in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont and Television Stations Licensed to Communities in Colorado, Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, and South Dakota.
December 1, 2017 is the mid-point in the license renewal term of radio stations licensed to communities in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont and Television stations licensed to communities in Colorado, Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, and South Dakota. If a station in one of these respective groups belongs to a Radio SEU with more than ten full-time employees or a television SEU with five or more full-time employees, it must electronically file the Form 397 Report by December 1. Licensees subject to this reporting requirement must attach copies of the SEU’s two most recent Annual EEO Public File Reports to their FCC Form 397 Report.
Note that SEUs that have been the subject of a prior FCC EEO audit are not exempt and must still file FCC Form 397 by the deadline. Electronic filing of FCC Form 397 is mandatory. A paper version will not be accepted for filing unless accompanied by an appropriate request for waiver of the electronic filing requirement.
It is critical that every SEU maintain adequate records of its performance under the EEO Rule and that it practice overachieving when it comes to earning the required number of Menu Option credits. The FCC will not give credit for Menu Option initiatives that are not duly reported in an SEU’s Annual EEO Public File Report or that are not adequately documented. Accordingly, before an Annual EEO Public File Report is finalized and made public by posting it on a station’s website or placing it in the public inspection file, the draft document, including supporting material, should be reviewed by communications counsel.
Finally, note that the FCC is continuing its program of EEO audits. These random audits check for compliance with the FCC’s EEO Rule, and are sent to approximately five percent of all broadcast stations each year. Any station may become the subject of an FCC audit at any time. For more information on the FCC’s EEO Rule and its requirements, as well as practical advice for compliance, please contact any of the attorneys in the Communications Practice.Click here for the full post
NEW YORK, Nov. 29, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- HC2 Holdings, Inc. (“HC2”) (NYSE:HCHC), a diversified holding company, announced today that its subsidiary, HC2 Network Inc. (“HC2 Network”), has acquired Azteca America, a Spanish-language broadcast network, from affiliates of TV Azteca, S.A.B. de C.V. (“Azteca”) (BMV:AZTECACPO) (Latibex:XTZA), one of the two largest producers of Spanish-language television programming in the world. In addition, HC2 Network has signed a definitive acquisition agreement with Northstar Media, LLC (“Northstar”), a licensee of numerous broadcast television licenses in the United States.
Under the agreement with Azteca, which closed today, HC2 Network acquired Azteca America, a Spanish-language broadcast network providing original content to the Hispanic audience in the United States. Under the agreement with Northstar, HC2 Network will acquire Northstar’s broadcast television stations, which carry Azteca America programming.
The Azteca transaction extends to the acquisition of professional staff across the U.S. involved in programming, marketing, advertising sales, finance and operations. The Northstar transaction, which is subject to approval by the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”), as well as other customary closing conditions, would result in HC2 Network acquiring 19 television stations, including two full-power stations, eight Class A stations and eight low power television (“LPTV”) stations, along with a channel share agreement for the full-power license of KEMO-TV in San Francisco.
In combination with HC2’s previously announced acquisitions of a controlling equity interest in DTV America Corporation, which currently carries Azteca video programming in 10 markets, and of the broadcasting assets of Mako Communications, LLC and its affiliates, Three Angels Broadcasting Network, Inc., and other station licensees, the acquisition of the 19 Northstar television stations would expand HC2’s broadcasting network to 113 operating stations, including three full-power stations (inclusive of the channel-share agreement for KEMO-TV in San Francisco), 27 Class A stations and 83 LPTV stations, in over 80 markets across the United States. In addition, the acquisitions increase HC2’s construction permits to 475, allowing for further buildout of coverage across the United States.
The Azteca transaction also includes multi-year programming and services agreement that provides HC2 with access to TV Azteca’s current programming and library in Mexico, including top entertainment shows, talk shows, reality programs, network and local news, as well as telenovelas and other scripted series.
“The acquisitions of Azteca America and the Northstar stations will substantially expand and accelerate our investment in broadcasting,” said Philip Falcone, HC2’s Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer. “Throughout 2017, we have strategically acquired broadcast assets across the country. Our vision is to capitalize on the opportunities to bring valuable content to more viewers over-the-air and position the Company for the changing media landscape. Our licensing agreement with TV Azteca will enable our larger broadcast network to bring compelling, Spanish-language programming to even more of the large, growing and underserved Spanish-speaking population in the U.S. At the same time, the combination of our network assets will generate opportunities for cost synergies through the rationalization of duplicative operations.”
“Today’s announcement marks an exciting and transformative milestone in Azteca America’s history,” said Manuel Abud, President and CEO, Azteca America. “We believe HC2 Network’s long-term investment and resources better position us, on a greater scale, to be an industry leader delivering best-in-class programming, production value and marketing solutions to our audiences and partners alike. Our shared business strategies and industry expertise makes this a perfect alliance to meet the ever-changing demands of the marketplace and further solidify Azteca America as an industry leader in premium Spanish-language content.”
“This alliance unlocks new opportunities for TV Azteca to expand our distribution arm in the United States and provide our world-class programming to new audiences,” said Benjamin Salinas, Chief Executive Officer, TV Azteca. “We look forward to forging future content collaborations with HC2 and Azteca America.”
The Latino population in the United States reached nearly 58 million in 2016 and has been the principal driver of U.S. demographic growth, accounting for half of national population growth since 2000.1 With 41 million native Spanish speakers in addition to 11.6 million who are bilingual, the United States now has more Spanish speakers than Spain and is second only to Mexico. The U.S. Census Office estimates that the U.S. will have 138 million Spanish speakers by 2050, making it the biggest Spanish-speaking country in the world.2
Subject to FCC consent, HC2 will acquire the following stations that are currently held by Northstar:
KAXW-LD, Mullin, Texas
KAZD (TV), Dallas, Texas
KAZH-LP, McAllen, Texas
KDFQ-LP, Prescott, Arizona
KDFS-CD, Santa Maria, California
KEMO-TV, San Francisco, California*
KHDF-CD, Las Vegas, Nevada
KLDF-CD, Lompoc, California
KNWS-LP, Brownsville, Texas
KPDF-CA, Phoenix, Arizona
KQDF-LP, Albuquerque, New Mexico
KSBO-CD, San Luis Obispo, California
KVDF-CD, San Antonio, Texas
KYAZ (TV), Houston, Texas
KYDF-LP, Corpus Christi, Texas
WQAW-LP, Lake Shore, Maryland
WTNO-LP, New Orleans, Louisiana
WUVM-LP, Atlanta, Georgia
WXAX-CD, Tampa, Florida
*Under Channel Share Agreement
Financial terms of the transactions were not disclosed.
HC2 Holdings, Inc. is a publicly traded (NYSE:HCHC) diversified holding company, which seeks opportunities to acquire and grow businesses that can generate long-term sustainable free cash flow and attractive returns in order to maximize value for all stakeholders. HC2 has a diverse array of operating subsidiaries across seven reportable segments, including Construction, Marine Services, Energy, Telecommunications, Life Sciences, Insurance and Other. HC2's largest operating subsidiaries include DBM Global Inc., a family of companies providing fully integrated structural and steel construction services, and Global Marine Systems Limited, a leading provider of engineering and underwater services on submarine cables. Founded in 1994, HC2 is headquartered in New York, New York. Learn more about HC2 and its portfolio companies at www.hc2.com.
Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
Safe Harbor Statement Under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: This release contains, and certain oral statements made by our representatives from time to time may contain, forward-looking statements. Generally, forward-looking statements include information describing actions, events, results, strategies and expectations and are generally identifiable by use of the words “believes,” “expects,” “intends,” “anticipates,” “plans,” “seeks,” “estimates,” “projects,” “may,” “will,” “could,” “might,” or “continues” or similar expressions. The forward-looking statements in this press release include without limitation statements regarding our expectation regarding building shareholder value. Such statements are based on the beliefs and assumptions of HC2's management and the management of HC2's subsidiaries and portfolio companies. The Company believes these judgments are reasonable, but you should understand that these statements are not guarantees of performance or results, and the Company’s actual results could differ materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements due to a variety of important factors, both positive and negative, that may be revised or supplemented in subsequent reports on Forms 10-K, 10-Q and 8-K. Such important factors include, without limitation, issues related to the restatement of our financial statements; the fact that we have historically identified material weaknesses in our internal control over financial reporting, and any inability to remediate future material weaknesses; capital market conditions; the ability of HC2's subsidiaries and portfolio companies to generate sufficient net income and cash flows to make upstream cash distributions; volatility in the trading price of HC2 common stock; the ability of HC2 and its subsidiaries and portfolio companies to identify any suitable future acquisition opportunities; our ability to realize efficiencies, cost savings, income and margin improvements, growth, economies of scale and other anticipated benefits of strategic transactions; difficulties related to the integration of financial reporting of acquired or target businesses; difficulties completing pending and future acquisitions and dispositions; effects of litigation, indemnification claims, and other contingent liabilities; changes in regulations and tax laws; and risks that may affect the performance of the operating subsidiaries and portfolio companies of HC2. These risks and other important factors discussed under the caption “Risk Factors” in our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), and our other reports filed with the SEC could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated by the forward-looking statements made in this press release.
You should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements attributable to HC2 or persons acting on its behalf are expressly qualified in their entirety by the foregoing cautionary statements. All such statements speak only as of the date made, and HC2 undertakes no obligation to update or revise publicly any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
For information on HC2 Holdings, Inc., please contact:
Andrew G. Backman
Investor Relations & Public Relations
Advanced Television Broadcasting Alliance (ATBA) is rallying current and new members to see the possibilities that lay ahead with ATSC 3.0 that was approved last week by the Federal Communication Commission. The dust from the recent Incentive Auction is beginning to settle and the future of Low Power Television (LPTV) Stations and Translators is looking optimistic.
"The ATSC 3.0 deployment will begin soon, and now is the time for broadcasters to start developing plans," said Robert Folliard, ATBA Chairman. “Low Power and Translator stations are positioned to take advantage of and benefit greatly from the new standard.”
ATSC 3.0 will allow LPTV stations to provide 4K ultra high definition, high dynamic range, high frame rate, wide color gamut, 3-D television, and mobile television. The standard also allows for the enhanced distribution of emergency information, putting local stations even closer to their communities’ wellbeing.
Another feature is the ability to deliver additional services alongside video, such as preferred language programming and in-language ads, presenting the opportunity to boost viewer loyalty while creating new streams for ad revenue.
"With these new opportunities on the horizon, the future of LPTV, Class A, and translators is, indeed, bright. Therefore, the need for ATBA and its assistance to and advocacy on behalf of station owners has increased," Folliard said.
"Consumers are watching television content via a variety of platforms and devices, and flexibility in service options is a keystone of the next-generation ATSC 3.0 DTV broadcast system, including the opportunity for terrestrial broadcasters to send hybrid content services to fixed and mobile receivers seamlessly—combining both over-the-air transmission and broadband delivery. The bottom line, viewers will have many more options for viewing local station programming," Lee Miller, ATBA Communications Director, said.
The new standards also provide for more efficient use of spectrum, which is another benefit for local stations with the ability to create more specialized channels offering educational, religious, cultural and public-service programming.
"The newly approved ATSC 3.0 standards will transform local broadcast TV and make LPTV broadcasters key players in this new technology," Miller said. "It will allow them to offer richer content, gather more granular data, and because of its conditional-access features, adopt new business models. We want our members to be prepared to lead this transition as informed and engaged early adopters."
The Advanced Television Broadcasting Alliance is an industry organization comprised of over 2,000+ low power television broadcasters, translators, full power television broadcasters and allied industry organizations and companies. The ATBA Board of Directors, with a combined 500 years of industry experience, will continue to offer expertise to the LPTV and Translator industry and interface with the true decision makers in Washington to provide information and updates to our members. The goal of the Alliance is to preserve and promote the efficient and effective use of all television broadcast spectrum.Click here for the full post
The NAB has been granted an FCC experimental license to operate a full-power Channel 31 transmission facility using the ATSC 3.0 standard in Cleveland, where the CTA will oversee and manage the station’s activities.
“Just as we collaborated to implement a test station as we led the nation’s transition to digital and HDTV, this partnership will help us test and experiment with this flexible new standard across a variety of applications and with fixed and mobile receivers in a real-world environment,” said CTA President and CEO Gary Shapiro in a statement. “We’re excited to continue our partnership with NAB to take this next critical step toward bringing the many benefits of Next Gen TV to viewers.”
RELATED: The World Series becomes the first live sports ATSC 3.0 broadcast
“This is the place where broadcasters, professional equipment manufacturers, consumer technology companies and other interested parties can work together and experiment with the innovative new standard,” said NAB President and CEO Gordon Smith in a statement. “Our technology team is working on everything from basic transmission to exercising the interactive features of the world’s first IP based broadcast standard. It’s a big effort, and we’re delighted to partner with CTA to enable this work.”
The ATSC 3.0 experimental broadcasts in Cleveland are using the transmitter and broadcast facilities of local Tribune Media-owned Fox affiliate WJW, where next-gen TV broadcast and consumer electronics equipment from more than a dozen different companies is already up and running.
The new full-power station tests in Cleveland come after last year the same station transmitted the first live ATSC 3.0 broadcast of a major professional sporting event—Game 2 of Major League Baseball’s 2016 World Series. Prior to NAB and CTA taking over the test station, early ATSC 3.0 field trials took place there in 2015.
The new announcement regarding ATSC 3.0 testing at the station comes as the FCC is preparing to vote on Nov. 16 regarding a 3.0 draft order.Click here for the full post
CLEVELAND – As the Federal Communications Commission prepares to vote this month to authorize voluntary implementation of the new Next Gen TV broadcast standard, the broadcasting and consumer technology industries are collaborating on a “living laboratory” ATSC 3.0 test station in Cleveland, Ohio.
The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) has been granted an FCC experimental license to operate a full-power Channel 31 transmission facility in Cleveland to help broadcasters and manufacturers prepare to deliver Next Gen TV services powered by the new ATSC 3.0 standard. The Consumer Technology Association (CTA™), a long-time proponent of next-generation television technologies, has joined forces with NAB to oversee and manage the station’s activities going forward.
“Just as we collaborated to implement a test station as we led the nation’s transition to digital and HDTV, this partnership will help us test and experiment with this flexible new standard across a variety of applications and with fixed and mobile receivers in a real-world environment,” said CTA President and CEO Gary Shapiro. “We’re excited to continue our partnership with NAB to take this next critical step toward bringing the many benefits of Next Gen TV to viewers.”
NAB President and CEO Gordon Smith noted the test station’s “vital role in the further development and implementation” of Next Gen TV. “This is the place where broadcasters, professional equipment manufacturers, consumer technology companies and other interested parties can work together and experiment with the innovative new standard,” he said. “Our technology team is working on everything from basic transmission to exercising the interactive features of the world’s first IP based broadcast standard. It’s a big effort, and we’re delighted to partner with CTA to enable this work.”
The ATSC 3.0 experimental broadcasts in Cleveland are using the transmitter and broadcast facilities of WJW, the local Tribune Media-owned Fox affiliate. Tribune Broadcasting’s Director of Engineering Operations Bill VanDuynhoven said, “With this test station, NAB and CTA are putting the new transmission standard through its paces to demonstrate how ATSC 3.0 technologies can deliver meaningful benefits to broadcasters and viewers alike.”
Already onsite and in operation at the station is Next Gen TV broadcast and consumer electronics equipment from more than a dozen different companies. The test station represents a collaborative living laboratory to fully exercise and understand the real-world capabilities of the new ATSC 3.0 standard developed by the Advanced Television Systems Committee.
The Cleveland station is no stranger to ATSC 3.0 testing. A year ago, in a defining moment for the future of television, the station transmitted the first live ATSC 3.0 broadcast of a major professional sporting event – Game 2 of Major League Baseball’s 2016 World Series. And before NAB and CTA took over management of the test station, early Next Gen TV field trials there starting in 2015 generated tens of thousands of data points showing how ATSC 3.0 can deliver 4K Ultra HD content, robust mobile reception, deep indoor reception by fixed receivers and improved spectrum efficiency.
Read more hereClick here for the full post