NYSBA Prepares for DC Lobbying

Next week the NYSBA Board of Directors, Futures Committee and other broadcast executives will be in Washington DC representing all broadcasters in the Empire State.  We want to thank executives for taking the time to present our concerns to Congress. We will provide you with a report upon our return.   We will be discussing a number of issues:

Pirate Act – Thank the NY delegation for voting for the pirate Act

STELAR/Retransmission Consent – Thank the NY delegation not extending STELAR, which has been a legislative vehicle for attacking retransmission consent for years.   The retransmission consent process is working and stations should receive fair market value for their programs.

Music Licensing:  Our payments to ASCAP and BMI are regulated under an antitrust consent decree.  The Department of Justice has commenced a review of these consent decrees with an eye towards eliminating them.  Such a result would completely up end music licensing.  We will be asking members to prevent the DOJ from unilaterally terminating the music licensing process.

Performance Tax/Local Radio Freedom Act – We will be making a big push to gain additional support for the Local Radio Freedom Act.  This Act makes it clear that Congress should not impose a performance fee/tax on over-the-air broadcast transmissions.

Advertising Regulations & Taxes – Our business depends on advertising.  We will be asking the NY delegation to consider the impact on local broadcasters when imposing advertising regulations on pharmaceuticals and other legal products.  Moreover, advertising should remain fully deductible in the year it is purchased.

Tax Certificates – For years the industry has tried to increase the number of women and minority owners. Unfortunately one of the most effective programs – the tax certificate program – was eliminated by Congress in 1995.  We believe it is time to reinstate the program.

At this point we have meetings schedule with Sen. Chuck Schumer, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and nearly all members of the NY House Congressional delegation. (We are waiting on a few offices to confirm this week).


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