SBE seeks clarification of policy posing possible threat to BAS licensees

February 28, 2005

The Society of Broadcast Engineers Feb. 21 asked the FCC to clarify a new policy that automatically deletes a station license from the Universal Licensing System (ULS) if no construction completion notification is filed.

The policy springs from a declaratory ruling to WT Docket 05-23 issued Jan. 21. that says the commission will automatically terminate and delete from the ULS any wireless radio services authorization in cases where no notice of completed construction has been filed. The commission will implement the new policy July 1.

Without the clarification, the SBE asserted that the policy could apply to existing BAS license holders that have filed modification applications but not a timely notice of completed construction.

The SBE filing noted that the new policy explicitly lists the wireless services affected by the new declaratory ruling in footnoted references and that Part 74 BAS licenses were not included. However, the society pointed out that a section of FCC rules “specifically includes Part 74 as on the wireless radio services,” making it appear as if Part 74 BAS stations are subject to the new ruling.

The society filing asked the commission to issue an amended or supplemental declaratory ruling stating that the FCC rules definition of a wireless service does not apply to BAS licensees.

However, if it were the intent of the commission to apply the new policy to Part 74 BAS stations, the society filing argued such action would be inappropriate. A better solution would be to delete “the modified record, leaving the original record and license intact,” the filing said.

The ULS should also show existing and proposed modified BAS records while an allowable construction period is pending to make sure both paths are protected.

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