The long awaited start has begun by the US General Accountability Office, to conduct the ONLY incentive auction impact study. This study, first recommended by our Coalition in the summer of 2014, was requested by House Energy & Communications Subcommittee House Representatives Barton (R-Texas), and Eshoo (D-CA) in the fall of 2014.
Here is the actual request from Congress.
You will note right away that this is NOT a study of all of the potential impacts, but those that specifically are a result of the original 2014 Incentive Auction Report & Order, and the 3rd LPTV Report and Order from late 2015.
"We ask the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to study the impacts of the incentive auction on LPTV stations and TV Translator stations, as well as their viewers.
Consistent with the FCC's Report and Order,
> Evaluate the impact of the incentive auction for both
84 MHz &
Within each of those two categories please provide the following information:
Total number of LPTV stations that provide:
> Original programming
> Broadcast local news and information
> Racial and ethnic minority programming
Total TV translator stations that air local news and information programming of a full-power TV broadcast station.
A projection of the number of LPTV stations and TV translator stations that may lose either their current input or output channel as a result of the forward auction.
A projection of the number of such LPTV stations and TV translator stations that will subsequently be able to locate and operate on replacement channels after the auction.
The aggregate estimate of the costs of relocation, including:
> New Equipment
> Legal Services
> Engineering services
> Facility construction
> Tower Services
A projection of the number of such LPTV stations and TV translator stations that will be unable to locate to or operate on replacement channels after the auction;
A projection of the number of viewers that will lose over-the-air access to at least one such local LPTV station that provide local news and information, especially to underserved communities of interest;
A projection of the number of viewers that will lose over-the-air access via such TV translator stations to at least one of the signals of the regional affiliates of the major commercial or noncommercial educational television broadcast networks
Recommendations to the FCC and Congress:
> Ways to remedy adverse impacts of the auction on LPTV and TV translator stations
> Ways to remedy adverse impacts of the auction on viewers