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McCain wants to reduce TV station license terms

In response to the Lear report that television broadcasters came up short on last year’s election coverage, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., proposed legislation last week that would shorten the license terms of TV stations from eight years to three.

He said the bill is intended to make it easier for the public and the FCC to evaluate a station’s public interest programming. It would also require broadcasters to post on the Internet the programming they have aired to meet their public interest obligations.

Additionally, the bill would require the full FCC to review five percent of all license and renewal applications. It also calls for the FCC to complete its open proceeding on whether public interest obligations should apply to broadcasters in the digital era.

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