FCC OKs Two Tribal Allotments
The FCC Media Bureau has approved requests from two tribal
organizations for local Class A FM allotments, one in Arizona and one in New
Mexico. An allotment serves as a placeholder for
a future FM station.
This is the type of move envisioned in the FCC’s rural radio proceeding,
formally called “Policies to Promote Rural Radio Service and to Streamline
Allotment and Assignment Procedures,” finalized in 2011. In that, the FCC said
the public interest would be served by establishing a priority in favor of tribes
and tribal entities proposing allotments of FM channels to serve tribal lands.
The Hualapai tribe asked
the commission to allot FM Channel 265A (100.9 MHz) to Peach Springs, Ariz., as
a first local tribal allotment and a second local service. The tribe showed that at least 50% of the principal
community contour would cover its tribal lands. Peach Springs is on tribal land.
Separately but similarly, Navajo
Technical College, part of the Navajo Nation, asked the FCC to allot Channel
297A in Crownpoint, N.M. (107.3 MHz). The facility
would be the first local tribally-owned commercial transmission service, and
the first local service overall.
The FCC received no
comments in opposition in either case.
consists of a community of license, a frequency or “channel,” a station class and
the latitude and longitude of a theoretical transmitter site,
according to the FCC website. Station hopefuls can initiate the process by filing
a petition for rulemaking to add an allotment plus a Form 301 application for
cases, the commission will release a public notice announcing a threshold
qualifications window, during which other qualifying applicant may file application
for a CP.