FCC Releases Final List of DTV Channel Assignments
As part of the final chapter in the evolving digital television transition, the FCC this week issued its latest version of station channel assignments. This listing is based on tentative channel allocations proposed in the commission’s Seventh Further Notice and is intended to be the last such table of assignments before the planned digital cutover on Feb. 17, 2009.
The 131-page document
lists final spectrum parking places for more than 1,800 television stations within the “core” channel 2 through 51 slots. In addition to U.S. stations, assignments for television operations in Guam, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands are also included.
The FCC noted that requests for new operating frequencies for 13 stations were received too late for inclusion in the newly released table of assignments. In dealing with these latecomers, the commission issued concurrently with the listing of broadcasting assignments a “Further Notice (Eighth Further Notice of Proposed Rule Making, In the Matter of Advanced Television Systems and Their Impact Upon the Existing Television Broadcast Service).” This document proposes channel allocations for the 13 broadcasters. Channels will be assigned for the tardy stations following a comment period.
The new DTV assignment table excludes low-power television stations (LPTVs). The report stated that these operations would be addressed in a separate proceeding. The FCC said that it was acting within its discretionary powers in not setting a hard cut off date for LPTV broadcasters until issues associated with transitioning full-power stations have been addressed.