FCC Sets Rules For LPFM Expansion

FCC LPFM Local Community Radio Act Translator The FCC has unanimously approved new rules for Low Power FM and establishing an application window to open on October 15, 2013.

The new rules allow the establishment of LPFM’s within third adjacent frequencies of full powered stations. Some waivers will be allowed for second adjacent LPFM’s under certain criteria. A channel finder is already available on the FCC website.

While we await the full specifics we do know that the FCC will award more points towards license grantings to stations that promise at least eight hours of of locally produced programming a day and those with a publicly available, staffed studio in the local neighborhood the station is operating in.

A cap on the pending translator applications will be set at 70 per licensee, with 50 of those in the top 150 markets. Representative Mike Doyle of Pennsylvania, who helped pen the Local Community Radio Act has written a column about the expansion of LPFM services at The Huffington Post.

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Lance Venta is the Owner and Publisher of RadioInsight.com and a consultant for RadioBB Networks specializing in integration of radio and the internet. Lance has two decades of experience tracking the audio industry and its use of digital platforms.


  1. That channel finder is fun to work with. And my hometown meets the criteria for an LPFM to boot!

  2. Gee, eight hours a day of local programming and a fully-staffed studio. Maybe they should require stations with a broadcast license to do that, too.
    The FCC seems more concerned with creating hobby stations for people who want to play radio than actually addressing the problems afflicting the radio business and stations that actually have audiences.

    • Part of this move has its’ roots in how the original LPFM moves were administered – or lack thereof – back in 2000. Plus many markets are SO built in with little available space for a LPFM (when co-channel or first/second-adjacent interference is taken into account). It’s going to be very slim pickings to begin with.

      Once wireless-based internet radio enters the mainstream, that has the potential to literally turn the broadcasting industry on its’ head.

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