FCC Sets Date for Start of FM6 “Franken FM” Rules

radio dial
(Image credit: Getty)

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Following the July 20, 2023 FCC Report and Order adopting new rules regarding low power television stations operating on TV channel 6 (FM6, aka “Franken FM” LPTV stations), the FCC is reporting that most of those rules will go into effect on Sept. 28, 2023.

The Report and Order permitted a limited number of 14 low power TV stations operating on TV channel 6 (FM6) to maintain their existing analog FM radio services on an ancillary or supplementary basis subject to specific operational rules and requirements. TV Tech's extensive coverage of this issue can be found here

The FCC noted that on “August 29, 2023, the Office of the Federal Register published a summary of the Report and Order.  Accordingly, the effective date for the rules adopted in the Report and Order is September 28, 2023, except for those that require approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB)  including new sections 74.790(o)(9) and 74.790(o)(10) of the Commission’s rules;  the requirement for FM6 LPTV stations to maintain an online public inspection file;  and the requirement that FM6 LPTV stations notify the Commission of their intent to continue FM6 operations, provide their FM6 operational parameters, and notify the Commission of any changes to their operational parameters.” 

The FCC added that until the Commission receives OMB approval on the remaining rules and requirements, FM6 LPTV stations should continue to seek extensions of their current FM6 engineering special temporary authorizations (STAs).

The FCC also reported  that Metro TV, Inc. has until December 22, 2023 for WVOA-LD, Westvale, New York, to commence ATSC 3.0 and FM6 operations by filing an application to convert the station to ATSC 3.0 and a request for engineering STA.   

George Winslow

George Winslow is the senior content producer for TV Tech. He has written about the television, media and technology industries for nearly 30 years for such publications as Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News and TV Tech. Over the years, he has edited a number of magazines, including Multichannel News International and World Screen, and moderated panels at such major industry events as NAB and MIP TV. He has published two books and dozens of encyclopedia articles on such subjects as the media, New York City history and economics.