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B&C: FCC Will Put ‘Shot Clock’ on Joint Service Agreement Waivers

fcc-logo_white-on-blackThe FCC will vote today on a proposal to restrict joint service agreements, seeking to limit situations where stations share facilities, and staff to lower costs. Broadcasting & Cable reports the FCC will implement a “shot clock” on waiver requests:

According to a source familiar with negotiations over the FCC’s joint sales agreement (JSA) item, the FCC’s Media Bureau will have 90 days to act on waiver requests. There will also be a strong presumption that JSA’s that benefit diversity are in the public interest, which could be good news for the Sinclair JSA’s with Armstrong Williams stations.

Negotiations over the item had stretched into the weekend, with Commissioner Mignon Clyburn said to have pushed for the shot clock, as well as for giving owners more than two years to unwind existing JSA’s that would exceed ownership limits, though according to sources that unwind period remains two years.

The media ownership item being teed up for a vote at the FCC Monday (March 31) is also said to include more specificity about what types of JSA’s would qualify for a waiver than was in the original draft item.

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