FCC TV Repacking – Phase 1 Complete

The FCC completed the first phase of its TV repacking plan on November 30th.  The TV repacking plan was the result of the FCC auctioning TV spectrum to wireless companies last year.  Completing the first phase of the repack is a significant step in this process.  Unlike the 2009 DTV transition, stations will not change channels all at once.  Rather they will transition to new channel in phases.  Under the FCC’s plan there will be ten phases.

In New York, a number of stations have already changed channels as a result of channel sharing arrangements. This process appears to have gone smoothly.

As for the remaining stations, the majority of New York stations will transition during phase 4, while others will change channels during phases 7, 8, 9 and 10. Here is the schedule:

Phase                 Beginning Date               End Date

1                             9/14/2018                           11/30/2018

2                             12/1/2018                           4/12/2019

3                             4/13/2019                           6/21/2019

4                             6/22/2019                           8/2/2019

5                             8/3/2019                              9/6/2019

6                             9/7/2019                              10/18/2019

7                             10/19/2019                         1/17/2020

8                             1/18/2020                            3/13/2020

9                             3/14/2020                            5/1/2020

10                           5/2/2020                              7/3/2020

While Congress allocated additional funds to cover the costs of repacking, stations changing channels in the later phases have become increasingly concerned whether there will be sufficient funds to cover the costs. Remember reimbursement also applies to radio stations that incur costs because they share towers with TV stations.  We are watching this issue closely.

To see the complete list of New York stations being repacked and the schedule click HERE.

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