NATOA Supports Protecting Community Television Legislation Reintroduction
Washington (February 9, 2023) – Senators Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) and Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisc.), members of the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, and Representative Anna G. Eshoo (CA-18), senior member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, today reintroduced their Protecting Community Television Act. This legislation would undo Trump-era rulemaking by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and ensure that public, educational, and government (PEG) channels have the resources they need to keep producing content for their viewers. In 2019, the FCC allowed cable companies to put a price tag on in-kind contributions they provide to communities, including PEG channels. Under the rule, cable companies can then subtract the ascribed value from the franchising fees that they pay in order to operate. The FCC’s decision has forced local governments across the country to decide between supporting PEG programming and supporting other public services for schools, public safety buildings, and libraries in cable franchise agreements.