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Congressional delegation from Ohio asks FCC to protect local TV stations

Congressional representatives from the state of Ohio have appealed to the FCC to protect Ohio television stations in frequency coordination negotiations with Canada and Mexico.

The Ohio delegation asked the FCC to include greater specificity into a number of areas in considering its rulemaking involving the broadcast incentive auctions. Of special interest to the Ohio group is how the FCC plans to coordinate with the Canadian and Mexican governments when repacking television stations along the nation’s northern and southern boarders.

“This is of particular concern because of the potential for loss of service to our constituents in the Cleveland-Akron, Toledo and Youngstown television markets that could result from coordinating frequencies with Canadian broadcasters,” the delegation wrote in the letter to the FCC.

“Today, these media markets must coordinate interference protections with already congested markets such as Detroit, Erie and Buffalo, which leaves very little room for error with the Canadian government,” the representatives said.

The Congressional delegation said that while the U.S. should have the “fastest” 4G wireless networks, the people of Ohio also depend on broadcast television. It is of the “utmost importance” that local stations remain on the air after the spectrum auctions, the group said.

The delegation also said the FCC should take special care to minimize harmful interference between wireless and broadcast services.

“While moving with all deliberate speed, the FCC should take the necessary time to ensure that no consumer’s wireless devices or televisions do not work properly due to harmful interference,” the delegation wrote.

The delegation is made up of Ohio’s two U.S. Senators, Sherrod Brown and Rob Portman, and 15 House members.