House Commerce Committee Passes SHVERA
October 15, 2009
House Commerce Committee passed its version of satellite TV legislation today.
The Satellite Home Viewer Extension Act, up for renewal this year, determines
what broadcast signals a satellite TV provider can carry into a given market.
The House bill was marked up to include a new way to measure signal reception.
Households on the fringe of designated market areas that cannot receive
stations from within the market are eligible to receive distant signals from
other markets via satellite. The methodology for determining household
eligibility for distant signals is based on analog transmission. Rep. Rick
Boucher (D-Va.) introduced an amendment directing the FCC to come up with a new
digital metric using the Longley-Rice model.
The amended bill, H.R.
2994, gives the commission 180 days to create a new predictive model for
determining DTV reception via a stationary, 30-foot rooftop antenna (as well as
other antenna types).
The new version also allows Dish Network to deliver distant signals in exchange
for delivering local-into-local in all 210 DMAs within the next two years.
Another amendment requires Dish to carry the HD signals of public TV stations
The bill passed the committee by voice vote. It must be reconciled with
legislation passed by the Judiciary Committee before going for a floor vote. Companion
SHVERA legislation in the Senate was the subject of a subcommittee hearing
there last week.
-- Deborah D. McAdams
(Image by Let Ideas
More on SHVERA:
October 8, 2009: “Broadcasters Fight SHVERA Modifications”
Until a new digital metric is determined, Karpowicz suggested
grandfathering in distant signals allowed by the previous determination.
July 15, 2009: “Congressman Bows Bill
to Import TV Signals”
Arkansas Democrat Mike Ross is pushing legislation to overturn the current rules
governing which broadcast signals satellite and cable operators can carry.
June 25, 2009: “SHVERA Passes House
The only changes to the legislation as it was written in 2004 were the date and
the provision to measure digital signal coverage using the Longley-Rice model
employed by the FCC.
June 16, 2009: “Broadcasters Battle for
The broadcast lobby is playing the localism card in a big way as Congress
considers the renewal of the SHVERA.
May 8, 2009: “ACA Says Retrans is
Squeezing Too Hard”
The cable industry has not yet rolled over on retransmission consent, whether
or not it comes up in pending satellite copyright legislation.
March 30, 2009: “Network Affiliates Urge
Lawmakers to Preserve Distant-Signal Limits”
CBS and NBC are urging key lawmakers to maintain restrictions on what TV
stations cable and satellite operators can carry in a given market.