The FCC has released the Order implementing the changes required by the Satellite Home Viewer Extension and Reauthorization Act of 2004 (SHVERA). The Order focuses primarily on must-carry, retransmission consent and significantly viewed issues, but a modification to Section 73.683 of the FCC rules exempts satellite carriers from the signal testing requirements of Section 339(c) of SHVERA in markets where they offer local-into-local service. Section 204 of the SHVERA states that subscribers that were not receiving distant broadcast analog signals via satellite as of Dec. 8, 2004 are not eligible to receive the distant signals where local-into-local service is available, whether or not they are able to receive the local station with a Grade B signal.
If you are involved with must-carry or retransmission consent elections, be sure to take some time to review the Order. Stations failing to make an election within 30 days after receiving notification from a satellite carrier that it intends to provide local service into their market for the first time will result in the station losing the right to demand carriage for the remainder of the three-year cycle of carriage under Section 325 of SHVERA. Notices are required to be sent by certified mail to address listed for the station in the FCC consolidated database system (CDBS).
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