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FCC Updates AM Directional Antenna Performance Verification Rules

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Released: August 16, 2013

Federal Communications Commission

FCC 13-115

Before the

Federal Communications Commission

Washington, D.C. 20554

In the Matter of
)
)

An Inquiry Into the Commission's Policies and
)
MM Docket No. 93-177
Rules Regarding AM Radio Service Directional
)
Antenna Performance Verification
)

THIRD REPORT AND ORDER AND SECOND ORDER ON RECONSIDERATION

Adopted: August 14, 2013

Released: August 16, 2013
By the Commission:

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Heading
Paragraph #
I. INTRODUCTION.................................................................................................................................. 1
II. BACKGROUND.................................................................................................................................... 2
III. THIRD REPORT AND ORDER ........................................................................................................... 3
IV. SECOND ORDER ON RECONSIDERATION .................................................................................. 23
V. CONCLUSION .................................................................................................................................... 25
VI. PROCEDURAL MATTERS................................................................................................................ 26
A. Regulatory Flexibility Act Analysis .............................................................................................. 26
B. Paperwork Reduction Act Analysis............................................................................................... 27
C. Congressional Review Act............................................................................................................. 29
D. Additional Information .................................................................................................................. 30
VII. ORDERING CLAUSES...................................................................................................................... 31
APPENDIX A - List of Commenters
APPENDIX B - Final Rules
APPENDIX C - Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis

I.

INTRODUCTION

1.
In this Third Report and Order, we further our initiative to simplify the Media Bureau's
licensing procedures. This Order harmonizes and streamlines the Commission's rules regarding tower
construction near AM stations in two respects. First, the Order establishes a single protection scheme for
tower construction and modification near AM tower arrays. Second, the Order designates "moment
method" computer modeling as the principal means of determining whether a nearby tower affects an AM
radiation pattern. These actions take another step in the Commission's modernization by replacing time-
consuming direct measurement procedures with an efficient computer modeling methodology that is
reflective of current industry practice.

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II.

BACKGROUND

2.
This proceeding is part of a longstanding effort to implement efficiencies in broadcast
licensing procedures.1 The Report and Order in this proceeding simplified traditional proof of
performance requirements for directional AM stations.2 The Further Notice sought comment on the use
of moment method modeling as a more efficient substitute for traditional directional AM station field
strength proofs, which can be time-consuming and expensive.3 The Second Report and Order further
reduced the regulatory burdens on AM broadcasters by permitting the use of moment method modeling to
verify AM directional antenna performance.4 The Second Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking sought
additional comment on whether to modify the rules regarding the obligation to protect AM stations from
the effects of nearby tower construction and modification. It proposed to replace the current scheme,
which is based on the service of the proposed tower user, with uniform rules that would apply to all
services and to permit the use of moment method modeling to assess the effects of tower construction or
modification near AM stations.5

III.

THIRD REPORT AND ORDER

3.
Background. In AM radio, the tower itself functions as the antenna. Consequently, a
nearby tower may become an unintended part of the AM antenna system, reradiating the AM signal and
distorting the authorized AM radiation pattern. Our rules contain several sections concerning tower
construction near AM antennas that are intended to protect AM stations from the effects of such tower
construction, specifically, Sections 73.1692, 22.371, and 27.63.6 These existing rule sections impose
differing requirements on the broadcast and wireless entities, although the issue is the same regardless of
the types of antennas mounted on a tower. Other rule parts, such as Part 90 (Private Land Mobile Radio
Services) and Part 24 (Personal Communications Services), entirely lack provisions for protecting AM
stations from possible effects of nearby tower construction.
4.
The Commission's longstanding "newcomer" policy mandates that a newcomer (i.e., a
party constructing a new or modified facility) is responsible, financially or otherwise, for taking steps
necessary to eliminate objectionable interference to existing stations.7 This policy has been applied to a

1 See, e.g., 1998 Biennial Regulatory Review Streamlining of Mass Media Applications, Rules, and Processes,
Report and Order, 13 FCC Rcd 23056 (1998).
2 See An Inquiry Into the Commission's Policies and Rules Regarding AM Radio Service Directional Antenna
Performance Verification,
Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rule Making, 16 FCC Rcd 5635 (2001)
("Report and Order" or "Further Notice"). An antenna proof of performance establishes whether the radiation
pattern of an AM station is in compliance with the station's authorization. An AM station must perform a full proof
to verify the pattern shape when a new directional antenna system is authorized. Partial proofs, which require fewer
measurements, are occasionally necessary to show that an array continues to operate properly.
3 See Further Notice, 16 FCC Rcd at 5637. Directional AM stations may use either moment method modeling or the
traditional method based on field strength measurements to demonstrate that an AM antenna pattern is properly
adjusted.
4 See An Inquiry Into the Commission's Policies and Rules Regarding AM Radio Service Directional Antenna
Performance Verification,
Second Report and Order and Second Further Notice of Proposed Rule Making, 23 FCC
Rcd 14267 (2008) ("Second Report and Order" or "Second Further Notice").
5 See Second Further Notice, 23 FCC Rcd at 14272.
6 47 C.F.R. 73.1692, 22.371, and 27.63.
7 The "newcomer" policy dates back to Midnight Sun Broadcasting Co., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 11 FCC
1119 (1947), in which the Commission held a broadcaster responsible for resolving interference caused by its new
facilities to other preexisting facilities in close proximity. The Commission does not require a specific rule or
express condition on a construction permit to apply the newcomer policy. See, e.g., Athens Broadcasting Co., Inc.,
(continued....)
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variety of services.8 Despite this underlying remediation policy, the absence of explicit rules across all
services with respect to tower construction near AM tower arrays9 has led to confusion among tower
proponents with respect to the proper procedures to protect nearby AM stations and, therefore,
inconsistent protection to the affected AM stations.10 Uniform rules for all services will mitigate
confusion and ensure consistent protection to AM stations.
5.
The Second Further Notice tentatively concluded that the issue of tower construction or
modification near AM stations should be addressed by a single set of rules applying to all tower
construction and sought comment on proposed new rules which would appear in Part 1 of the
Commission's Rules.11 The new rules are based on proposals by an ad hoc technical group of radio
broadcasters, equipment manufacturers, and broadcast consulting engineers, acting collectively as the AM
Directional Antenna Performance Verification Coalition ("Coalition"). The Coalition's members include
24 broadcast licensees, among them the largest group owners, and ten broadcast consulting firms. The
Coalition's proposal to consolidate AM proximity rules was also supported by PCIA--the Wireless
(Continued from previous page)
Memorandum Opinion and Order, 68 FCC 2d 920 (1978) (requiring a newcomer AM radio permittee to remediate
any damaging interference caused to a previously authorized CATV headend tower); B&W Truck Service, Letter, 15
FCC 2d 769 (1968) (ordering a Part 90 licensee to dismantle or detune its tower due to interference to a preexisting
AM station); Broadcast Corporation of Georgia, Memorandum Opinion and Order, 91 FCC 2d 854 (1982) (finding
that a new television station "as the `newcomer' has the responsibility to implement effective measures to rectify the
interference caused to other authorized and existing services by its operations" and bears the "burden of correcting
the interference, financial and otherwise").
8 See, e.g., Amendment of Parts 2, 22 and 90 of the Commission's Rules, Second Report and Order, 91 FCC 2d
1214, 1223 (1982) (noting the applicability of the newcomer interference policy to Part 90 stations and explaining
"in resolving interference complaints, if cooperation does not work, we will require the `last person-in' to correct the
interference problem); Amendment to Part 1, 21 and 74 of the Commission's Rules, Report and Order on
Reconsideration, 14 FCC Rcd 12764, 12781 (1999) (explaining that interference rights within MDS and ITFS
services are based on a "first in time, first in right" philosophy); Sudbrink Broadcasting of Georgia, Memorandum
Opinion and Order, 65 FCC 2d 691, 692 (1977) (clarifying that in interference disputes between two broadcast
stations "[i]t is clear that the `newcomer' is responsible, financially or otherwise, for taking whatever steps may be
necessary to eliminate objectionable interference."); 47 C.F.R. 74.703(d) ( "When a low power TV or TV
translator station causes interference to a CATV [cable] system ... the earlier user, whether cable system or low
power TV or TV translator station, will be given priority on the channel, and the later user will be responsible for
correction of the interference"); 47 C.F.R. 101.105 (establishing interference protection criteria under which fixed
microwave services must protect existing or previously applied for systems).
9 As we discuss below, the Commission's rules contained some explicit but dissimilar requirements that certain
licensees must follow to protect AM stations from the effects of nearby tower construction, whereas other licensees
do not have to follow specific requirements to protect AM stations. See infra, note 68 and accompanying text.
10 See, e.g., Amendments to Part 73 and 74 of the Commission's Rules to Permit Certain Changes in Broadcast
Facilities
, Report and Order, 12 FCC Rcd 12371, 12394-95 (adopting Section 73.1692 of the Rules and
acknowledging the "inconsistent protection to AM radio stations by different services"); Comments of Crawford
Broadcasting Company ("Crawford") at 1 (noting that "Part 22 and 27 licensees do a reasonably good job of
protecting nearby AM antennas," but finding that "Part 90 and Part 15 licensees often construct or modify antenna
structures close to AM antenna sites without making any notification").
11 The existing rules (Sections 73.1692, 22.371, and 27.63) apply to all towers within the specified distances of an
AM station; the rules are not restricted to towers requiring registration. Similarly, the Commission proposed new
rules that would apply to the construction of all communications towers within specified parameters, not just towers
requiring notice to the Federal Aviation Administration and tower registration under Part 17. Accordingly, the
Commission proposed that any new rules adopted should appear in Part 1 of our Rules, not Part 17, as initially
proposed by the Joint Commenters.
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Infrastructure Association ( "PCIA"), the Land Mobile Communications Council ("LMCC"), the
Wireless Communications Association International, Inc. ("WCA"), and most commenters.
6.
Existing Commission rules require licensees and permittees to notify AM stations and take
appropriate action when a tower is constructed within a fixed distance of an AM station. In contrast, the
Second Further Notice proposed to replace this approach with one that defines the critical distance from
both nondirectional (single antenna) and directional (multiple antennas) AM stations based on the
pertinent AM station's frequency and the proponent's tower height.12 The proposed rules would require a
party proposing to construct a new tower or significantly modify13 an existing tower within the pertinent
critical distance to provide notice to the AM station at least 30 days prior to the planned commencement
of construction. Such party would be responsible for the installation and maintenance of any detuning
apparatus necessary to restore the AM station's radiation pattern. The proposed rules would designate
moment method modeling14 as the principal means of determining whether a nearby tower affects an AM
pattern. The rules would, however, allow traditional "partial proof" measurements15 taken before and
after tower construction as an alternative procedure when the potentially affected AM station was licensed
pursuant to field strength measurements, as opposed to computer modeling. The proposed rules would
eliminate short towers from consideration16 and would exclude many routine cases in which antennas are
added to existing towers. However, the proposed rules would permit an AM station to show that tower
construction or modification not otherwise subject to these notice and remediation requirements had
affected AM station operations and would authorize the Commission, if necessary, to direct a tower
proponent17 or owner to install and maintain any detuning apparatus18 necessary to restore proper
operation of the AM antenna.
7.
Nearly all commenters support the proposed rules with minor revisions.19 In joint
comments, the Coalition, LMCC, and WCA ("Joint Commenters") state that the new rules "will clarify
the proper procedures for ascertaining the impact of nearby construction activities on AM stations, and

12 The critical distance for non-directional AM stations is one wavelength at the frequency of the AM station. The
critical distance for directional AMs is any distance less than ten wavelengths of the frequency of the AM station up
to a maximum distance of three kilometers, as specified in existing rules for certain wireless licensees.
13 Section 1.30002(d) defines a significant modification as follows: "A significant modification of a tower in the
immediate vicinity of an AM station is defined as follows: (1) any change that would alter the tower's physical
height by 5 electrical degrees or more at the AM frequency; or (2) the addition or replacement of one or more
antennas or transmission lines on a tower that has been detuned or base-insulated." See Appendix B hereto.
14 Moment method modeling is a computer modeling technique that can be used to verify that an AM directional
antenna performs as authorized.
15 Partial proofs, which require fewer measurements than a full proof, are occasionally necessary to show that an
AM array continues to operate properly. Partial proof of performance measurements, using the procedures
described in Section 73.154 of the Commission's Rules, must be made whenever the licensee has reason to believe
that the radiated field may be exceeding the limits for which the station was most recently authorized to operate.
16 Short towers are subject to the current rules. See 47 C.F.R. 73.1692, 22.371, and 27.63.
17 As defined by our new rules, tower proponent refers to a "party proposing tower construction or significant
modification of an existing tower or proposing installation of an antenna on an AM tower." See Appendix B
(adopting new rule 47 C.F.R. 1.30001(c)).
18 A detuning apparatus is used to minimize reradiation of the AM signal, thus correcting distortion of the AM
station's antenna pattern.
19 See, e.g., Comments of the National Association of Broadcasters ("NAB") at 2; Comments of Crawford at 1;
Comments of Waterford Consultants, LLC (Waterford") at 2.
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will reduce both the time and expense associated with performing that analysis."20 The Joint Commenters
suggest several minor changes to the proposed rules. PCIA also expresses substantial support for the
proposed rules, stating that "with a few minor clarifications, the Commission's new process as
consolidated in Part 1 of the Commission's Rules will provide helpful guidance for those involved with
tower construction."21 Greater Media, Inc., while supporting the concept of a consolidated set of rules,
expresses reservations regarding the use of moment method analysis by tower owners or proponents of
tower construction to assess the effects of a tower on directional AM stations licensed pursuant to a proof
based on field strength measurements.22 Greater Media proposes more substantial revisions to the
proposed rules. We address these matters below.
8.
Discussion. In the Second Further Notice the Commission requested comment on the
proposal to adopt a uniform set of rules applicable to all services,23 the use of moment method modeling
to assess the effects of tower construction or modification near AM stations, as well as a number of issues
that could establish limits on the scope of the new rules and the technical and/or policy grounds for such
limits. Specifically, the Commission sought comment on: (1) the proposed exclusion of short towers and
antenna structures mounted on buildings from AM proximity analysis; (2) the proper notification
procedures to AM stations regarding nearby tower construction; (3) a rule provision to cover
circumstances that would be otherwise excluded from the new rules;24 (4) the structures subject to the
new rules; and (5) the proposed application of the new rules to towers constructed or substantially
modified after the rules' effective date.
9.
Threshold Heights and Exclusion of Building-Mounted Antennas. The proposed rules
excluded short towers from AM proximity analysis on the grounds that such towers are inefficient re-
radiators that would not generally affect an AM pattern. Most commenters agree with the proposed
threshold heights of 36 electrical degrees for a directional antenna and 60 electrical degrees for a non-
directional antenna.25 Two commenters, however, propose lower threshold heights. Greater Media urges
the Commission to reduce the non-directional antenna threshold height from 60 to 36 electrical degrees
and adopt a more stringent 1 decibel (dB) pattern distortion threshold.26 Cohen, Dippell and Everist, P.C.
("CDE") recommends that a 20 degree electrical height be used in lieu of the 36 electrical degree height
proposed for directional antennas.27 These commenters, however, offer no analytical support for their
alternative proposals. In contrast, our threshold height limits are premised on extensive staff modeling
studies and modeling studies previously submitted by the Association of Federal Communications

20See Joint Comments of AM Performance Directional Antenna Performance Verification Coalition, the Land
Mobile Communications Council, and the Wireless Communications Association International, Inc. ("Joint
Comments") at (i).
21 See Reply Comments of PCIA at 1.
22 See Comments of Greater Media, Inc. ("Greater Media") at 4.
23 See New Section 1.30000 of the Rules.
24 For example, a short tower that would be otherwise excluded from study under the new rules could potentially
affect the operation of an AM station if it is very close to the AM antenna. There may also be unusual
circumstances in which tower construction outside the proposed distances may affect an AM pattern.
25 See, e.g., Joint Comments at 3; Comments of Crawford at 1.
26 Comments of Greater Media at 2-3 (asserting that "it is well established in the industry that nondirectional
structures in such close proximity to an antenna array can be very highly illuminated and thus have a high potential
for significant rerediation").
27 Comments of CDE at 2 (explaining that the "firm found it necessary to detune a structure who possessed an
electrical height of about 25 degrees in a field of 100 mV/m").
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Consulting Engineers.28 The Commission's proposed 2 dB pattern distortion threshold, which was
supported by the majority of commenters, is the criterion utilized in assessing the circularity of a
nondirectional pattern in other broadcast services.29 Accordingly, we adopt the 2 dB pattern distortion
threshold and the threshold heights of 36 electrical degrees for a directional antenna and 60 electrical
degrees for a non-directional antenna, and therefore, exclude shorter towers from consideration.
10.
Similarly, the proposed rules excluded all antenna structures mounted on buildings from
AM proximity analysis. The Joint Commenters, while agreeing in substance with the exclusion of
building-mounted antennas, suggest a modification of the proposed rule. The Joint Commenters warn
that, in some cases, buildings may support towers tall enough to be significant re-radiators at an AM
frequency. According to the Joint Commenters, "[s]ignificant tower structures can be mounted on
buildings, and [we] are aware of several instances where the height of a microwave or other type of tower
actually exceeds the height of the building on which the tower is mounted."30 Therefore, the Joint
Commenters suggest that the new rules should apply to any tower that would increase "the overall
physical height of a building by more than 10 electrical degrees."31 We acknowledge the Joint
Commenters' concern regarding taller towers atop buildings, and we agree that the proposed categorical
exemption of all antennas mounted on buildings is overly broad, and therefore, could potentially expose
AM stations to adverse pattern distortions. We believe, however, that the criterion of 10 electrical
degrees is not a practical solution because: (1) it is difficult, if not infeasible, to predict and accurately
measure re-radiation from a building; and (2) it is impossible to detune a building and similarly,
impossible to detune the combination of a building and a tower. Accordingly, because it is not feasible to
analyze the combined effects of the building and tower, we believe that it is more appropriate to consider
the potential effects of a tower separately from any building on which it is mounted. We therefore revise
the rule to exclude most antenna structures atop buildings, except where the antenna structure alone
would be a significant re-radiator as defined in Section 1.30002(a) or (b).32
11.
Notification. Commenters were divided on the provisions of the proposed rules requiring
30 days' prior notice of tower construction, including significant tower modifications, to a nearby AM
station.33 Greater Media considers the proposed 30-day notice period too short, advocating instead for a
120-day notice period.34 PCIA prefers that the rules require no minimum notice when tower construction
is deemed not to affect the AM pattern. Alternatively, PCIA supports procedures for expedited notice to
reduce delays.35 The Joint Commenters support the 30-day notice proposal, but also suggest procedures
for expedited notice of tower construction, citing similar provisions in the Commission's rules governing

28 See Comments of the Association of Federal Communications Commission Engineers, Docket No. 93-177 (July
24, 2007) at 16-19.
29 A nondirectional antenna produces a circular radiation pattern, i.e., the same radiation value in every direction
from the antenna. The +/-2 dB circularity is a routine specification for VHF and UHF non-directional patterns.
30 See Joint Comments at 4.
31 Id. at 5. As defined in our new rules, a tower height in electrical degrees is equal to [(Tower height in
meters)/AM wavelength in meters)] x 360 degrees. See Appendix B (adopting new rule 47 C.F.R. 1.30001(b)).
32 See Appendix B, Section 1.30002(e) of the new Rules. We have also revised Section 1.30003(b) of the proposed
rules ("Installations on a directional AM array"), which is an updated version of Section 73.1692(a) and (b) of the
Commission's Rules. The rule has been updated to reflect our experience with the new moment method proofs,
Section 73.151(c), adopted earlier in this proceeding.
33 See Section 1.30002(a) and (b) of the new Rules.
34 See Comments of Greater Media at 4.
35 See Comments of PCIA at 2.
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fixed microwave services in Part 101.36 Further, the Joint Commenters recommend that the rules
incorporate a narrow exception to the prior notice requirement to address "urgent but temporary needs in
the event of an emergency situation."37 Finally, the Joint Commenters propose that the rules include
detailed notification procedures, explicitly listing the information to be included in the notice, such as a
physical description of the planned construction, and adding a requirement for a response by the affected
AM station.38 We agree with the Joint Commenters' proposals, and accordingly, adopt the 30-day
notification period, with the addition of specific notification procedures, requests for expedited notice,
and an emergency exception.39 We believe this represents a reasonable compromise between the
competing proposals. A 30-day notification period, in lieu of the 120-day period proposed by Greater
Media, will minimize unnecessary deployment delays. The detailed notification procedures will enable
AM stations to effectively assess the impact of the proposed construction within the shorter 30-day
period. Finally, the expedited notice process we adopt should allay PCIA's concerns and reduce
construction delays.40 We believe these new notification procedures, which are based on existing
Commission rules,41 will reduce the potential for disputes, provide adequate notice to AM licensees, and
enable affected AM licensees to more easily verify the proponent's analysis without unnecessary
duplication of work.
12.
The Commission also sought comment on the point in the AM licensing process at which
the notification procedures should apply. Specifically, the Second Further Notice asked whether a tower
proponent should be required to notify the permittee of an unconstructed AM station, or whether
notification procedures should apply only when the AM station is licensed or operating pursuant to
Program Test Authority (PTA) prior to construction of the nearby structure. In the absence of any
comments on this issue, we will apply the notification procedures to AM stations that are licensed or
operating pursuant to PTA. We will not require a tower proponent to notify the permittee of an
unconstructed AM station. Because the facilities authorized by AM station construction permits often
remain unconstructed when the permit expires or the permits are modified before the authorized facilities
are constructed, we believe it would be unproductive to require tower proponents to analyze and protect
unconstructed AM facilities. Moreover, because both the field strength measurements described in

36 See, e.g., 47 C.F.R 101.103(d)(2). The Joint Commenters recommend that if the tower proponent delivers a
notice of construction that is identified as "expedited," the proponent would then be permitted to commence
construction upon receipt from the potentially affected AM station licensee of either a written concurrence to the
construction project, or a verbal concurrence that is followed by a written concurrence. See Joint Comments at 6.
37 Joint Commenters Reply Comments at 6. In emergency situations involving essential public services, public
health, or public welfare, the Joint Commenters propose that a tower proponent should be permitted to erect a
temporary new tower or make a temporary significant modification to an existing tower without prior notice to
potentially affected AM stations, provided that the tower proponent provides written notice to such AM stations
within five days of the erection or modification of the tower and cooperates with such AM stations to promptly
remedy any pattern distortions that arise as a consequence of such construction.
38 See Joint Comments at 6. The Joint Commenters recommend that the new rules specify that construction notices
should be in writing, and that such notices include: (1) the coordinates of the tower to be constructed or modified;
(2) a physical description of the planned construction; and (3) the results of the analysis showing the predicted effect
on the AM pattern, if performed.
39 See Appendix B (adopting new rule 47 C.F.R. 1.30004(d) and (e))
40 See PCIA Reply Comments at 3 (acknowledging that an expedited notice process "would permit the rapid
deployment of wireless infrastructure").
41 New Section 1.30004 ("Notice of tower construction or modification near AM stations") is modeled after Section
101.103(d)(2) of the Commission's Rules.
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Section 1.30002(f) and the adjustment of a detuning network42 require the presence of the AM signal, we
feel that this interpretation reasonably balances the interests of the AM station with those of the tower
proponent.43
13.
Determination of distance from a directional AM station. A non-directional AM antenna
consists of a single tower, the coordinates of which appear in Commission databases. Directional AM
antennas, on the other hand, consist of multiple towers, which may be several hundred meters apart. The
relatively large spacing between directional AM towers leaves some potential for confusion when
determining distances from a directional AM station. The proposed new rules require that proponents of
new towers or significant modifications to existing towers examine the potential effects of the proposed
construction activity on the nearby AM directional station if the tower is "within the lesser of 10
wavelengths or 3 kilometers of the AM [directional] station."44 The proposed rules, however, do not
specify the measuring point from which to calculate these critical distances. The Joint Commenters and
Waterford each suggest clarifying the determination of distance from a directional AM station by
specifying that the array center coordinates now used in the Consolidated Database System ("CDBS"),
the Media Bureau's database, should be used for such calculations.45 We agree, and revise the rule
accordingly. This minor clarification is essential to facilitate compliance and mitigate confusion when
determining distances, and is therefore a logical and necessary outgrowth of the proposed rules.46
14.
Towers that are excluded from the pre-construction evaluation. The Second Further Notice
sought comment on a rule provision to cover towers that are excluded from the routine pre-construction
study and notification to the AM licensee, but that nonetheless affect an AM station's radiation pattern.47
For example, there may be circumstances in which a tower more than 3 kilometers away may
nevertheless affect a directional AM station. Similarly, a short tower or tower modification that would be
otherwise excluded from study may affect an AM station if it is very close to the AM antenna.
Commenters were divided on this issue. According to Waterford, "the proposed rules leave the tower
proponents' responsibilities open-ended" in these situations.48 Waterford asserts that tower proponents

42 See 47 C.F.R. 1.30002(a) and (b). A tower proponent that causes a disturbance to the radiation pattern of an
AM station, as defined in Section 1.30002(a) or (b), is responsible for taking appropriate ameliorative action to
correct such disturbance, such as installing, maintaining, and, if necessary, adjusting the detuning apparatus, in order
to restore proper operation of the antenna.
43 In contrast, analysis using moment method computer modeling does not require the potentially affected AM
station to be operating at the time of analysis. Accordingly, even if an AM station is silent, a tower proponent can
and should utilize moment method modeling to assess whether the proposed construction or modification will affect
the AM station's pattern. Both field strength measurements and detuning, however, can only be done when an AM
station is operating with its licensed parameters.
44 New Section 1.30002(b).
45 See Joint Comments at 3-4; Comments of Waterford at 4.
46 See, e.g., Public Service Commission of the District of Columbia v. FCC, 906 F.2d 713, 717 (D.C. Cir. 1990)
(stating that "it is well established that the exact result reached after a notice and comment rulemaking need not be
set out in the initial notice for the notice to be sufficient. Rather, the final rule must be `a logical outgrowth' of the
rule proposed").
47 Second Further Notice, 23 FCC Rcd at 14273 ("[S]hould any final rule on this issue, if adopted, include a
provision requiring tower proponents to protect the AM station upon submission of a credible demonstration that the
tower affects the AM pattern? We tentatively conclude that such a provision would be appropriate."). "Study"
refers to the requirement that a party proposing the construction or significant modification of a tower within the
threshold height limits examine the potential impact of the construction or modification using a moment method
analysis or field strength measurements.
48 See Comments of Waterford at 5.
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need to have their financial obligations clearly defined from the outset and that mandating "clear
documentation at or very near the time of construction about the need to detune" would provide tower
proponents with more certainty.49 Greater Media supports the proposed rule provision, stating that "there
are no absolutes in such situations."50 The Joint Commenters support the proposed rule provision with
modifications. They advocate defining the type of analysis that would constitute a credible showing that
the tower construction has affected the AM station. Specifically, the Joint Commenters recommend that
the AM station must supply either a moment method analysis or field strength measurements to support
its claim. The tower proponent, according to the Joint Commenters, should be afforded an opportunity to
respond to the AM station's showing of adverse impact. Finally, the Joint Commenters propose that the
rule include a two-year time limit within which the AM station must make a claim of adverse impact.51
15.
We agree that the proposed rule should be modified. Defining the type of showing required
from an AM station when an otherwise excluded tower construction or modification affects the station's
radiation pattern and requiring the AM station to share the study with the tower proponent, as the Joint
Commenters suggest, will facilitate resolution of possible problems. We also acknowledge the
difficulties of potentially open-ended financial obligations, as Waterford notes. A reasonable time limit
on claims of adverse impact will encourage AM station licensees to promptly identify potential pattern
disruptions and provide tower proponents with greater certainty regarding future potential liabilities. We
find, however, that a time limit of less than two years will not allow an AM station licensee sufficient
time to ascertain that its pattern has been adversely affected, identify the source of the pattern disruption,
and prepare and submit an adverse impact showing.52 We therefore require that showings of adverse
impact under this rule section be made within two years after the date of completion of the tower
construction or modification.53 The two-year time frame will protect the interests of AM stations while
relieving tower proponents of long-term financial obligations. New Section 1.30002(g) includes these
modifications to the proposed rule.
16.
Structures subject to the rules. The Second Further Notice proposed to apply the revised
rules to construction of all communications towers falling within established geographic limits and above
a specified height, not only to towers requiring notice to the Federal Aviation Administration and
registration under Part 17.54 The Commission sought comment on whether the Commission may apply
the proposed rules to the owners of structures that are not otherwise subject to Commission licensing
processes, such as towers that do not require registration and which no Commission licensee, permittee or
applicant uses or proposes to use. The Second Further Notice asked whether, alternatively, the
Commission should prohibit applicants from proposing and licensees or permittees from using a tower
when the owner has not complied with notice and detuning requirements. The Joint Commenters support
applying the new rules to either all tower owners or, alternatively, to all Commission licensees proposing

49 Id.
50 See Comments of Greater Media at 3.
51 See Joint Comments at 6.
52 See id. at 8 (asserting that submission of an adverse impact showing within two years of construction or
modification of the tower is reasonable and provides AM station licensees sufficient time to complete the showing).
53 Showings of adverse impact should be submitted to the Bureau which oversees the offending Commission
licensee or permittee, i.e., if the alleged offender is a public mobile service licensee, the showing would be
submitted to the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau.
54 See note 11, supra; Second Further Notice, 23 FCC Rcd at 14273, 19.
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to use towers that may fall under the provisions of the new rules. Greater Media and CDE also favor
applying the new rules to non-licensee tower owners.55
17.
Many structures other than communications towers may re-radiate an AM signal, e.g., water
towers, power lines, and buildings. Furthermore, the parties that construct both registered towers and
towers that do not require registration may or may not be Commission authorization holders, and a tower
may or may not house a Commission licensee at the time of construction.56 The Second Further Notice
sought comment on whether the Commission should assert jurisdiction over non-licensee tower owners
and whether the towers, as incidental radiators, would be subject to Part 15 restrictions.57 No party
addressed the issue of the Commission's jurisdiction over non-licensees who build towers and other
structures near AM stations. Greater Media, the only commenter to address these issues, expressed its
belief that "such structures would very likely fall within the restrictions of Part 15 in regard to incidental
radiators,"58 but offered no support for its contention. While the Commission's jurisdictional authority
over non-licensees is well established for certain purposes,59 we find it administratively prudent to apply
the rules only to applicants, licensees, and permittees. We adopt the Second Further Notice proposal that
will bar applicants from proposing and licensees and permittees from using towers that have not
completed our revised study and notice process and any necessary detuning. We clarify that under this
rule, a licensee or permittee may locate an antenna on a tower that did not complete this process prior to
construction if either the tower owner or any collocator completes all the required steps before the
licensee's or permittee's collocation.60 Similarly, we prohibit a licensee or permittee from locating an
antenna on a tower that an AM station owner has shown creates a disturbance to its radiation pattern
unless appropriate remedial action has been taken.61 We find this approach promotes the public interest in
maximizing collocation opportunities for wireless and broadcast licensees and permittees because it: (1)
provides an incentive for all tower owners to complete the study and notice process before construction in
order to make the tower most readily available for collocation; (2) provides an avenue through which
towers that do not complete the process before construction may become available for collocation; and (3)
avoids interfering with contractual or other business arrangements between Commission authorization
holders and non-authorization holder tower owners.
18.
Application of the new rules The Second Further Notice tentatively concluded that any
new rules adopted should be applied only to towers constructed or modified after the effective date of the
new rules, i.e., where actual construction commences after the effective date. Commenters addressing
this issue were divided. Greater Media supports this approach,62 while Ronald L. Myers suggests

55 See Comments of Greater Media at 1; Comments of CDE at 1.
56 Both wireless licensees and broadcast licensees and permittees frequently locate antennas on towers owned by
non-licensees or permittees in order to provide services to the public.
57 Specifically, the Commission sought comment on whether the proposed rules should apply to the owners of
structures that are not otherwise subject to Commission licensing processes, i.e., whether the rules should apply to
structures such as towers that do not require registration and that no Commission licensee, permittee or applicant
uses or proposes to use. See Second Further Notice, 23 FCC Rcd at 14273, 19.
58 Comments of Greater Media at 2, note 1.
59 See, e.g., 47 U.S.C. 303(q) and 503(b)(5); see also Compulsory Copyright License for Cable Retransmission,
Report, 4 FCC Rcd 6711, 6713 (1989) (Commission asserts jurisdiction over non-licensee entities where such
entities are regulated under Part 15).
60 See new Section 1.30002(i).
61 See new Section 1.30002(g).
62 Comments of Greater Media at 6.
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"making this rule retroactive."63 Crawford recommends that, if the Commission applies the new rules
only to towers constructed or modified after the new rules' effective date, the Commission should also:
(1) clarify and identify how it will respond to pending formal tower complaints, and (2) employ language
to "deal with existing situations wherein AM stations must operate with STA because of uncoordinated
antenna structure construction near their arrays."64
19.
We affirm the tentative conclusion to apply the new rules to towers constructed or modified
after the effective date of the new rules, an approach supported and/or unopposed by the majority of
commenters. In addition, as explained below, we will apply the new rules' remediation requirement to
construction commenced before the effective date, except that pending complaints will be resolved in
accordance with any pre-existing rules that are applicable to the service in question. New Section
1.30002(h) includes this modification to the proposed rules.65 Consistent with the other rules adopted in
this proceeding, the rules will only apply to Commission applicants, permittees, and licensees,66 and, in
accordance with the "newcomer" policy, will only apply to construction or modification that has
adversely affected preexisting AM stations, i.e., stations that were operating before the tower proponent
commenced construction or modification. Although the new rules will not apply to tower owners that are
not applicants and do not hold Commission authorizations, this does not mean that a Commission licensee
or permittee can locate an antenna on such a tower with no obligations. Rather, we clarify that as of the
effective date of the new rules, a Commission applicant may not propose, and a Commission licensee or
permittee may not locate, an antenna on an existing tower that is causing a disturbance to the radiation
pattern of an AM station, as defined in Section 1.30002(a) or (b), and that has not previously been studied
for AM radiation pattern disturbance, unless the applicant, licensee, permittee or tower owner completes
the new study and notification process and takes appropriate ameliorative action to correct any
disturbance, such as detuning the tower.67
20.
We recognize, as Crawford highlights, that there may be circumstances in which an AM
station has been adversely affected by tower construction or modification authorized and either
commenced or completed before or on the effective date of the new rules. The Commission's
longstanding "newcomer" policy obligates FCC licensees to remedy interference caused to existing
stations.68 We acknowledge, however, that the current absence of explicit rules across all services with
respect to tower construction near AM arrays has led to confusion as to what should be done to protect the
AM station, and therefore, inconsistent protection to AM stations.69 Accordingly, we direct any affected

63 Comments of Ronald L. Myers at 1.
64 Comments of Crawford at 2 (explaining that after a Part 90 tower was constructed near its affiliate station, the
station filed a complaint seeking an order to require the Part 90 licensee to detune its tower, and the station has been
forced to operate pursuant to STA while the complaint remains pending).
65 We recognize that there may be pending interference complaints before the Commission. To the extent possible,
these complaints should be resolved under the current rules, i.e., Sections 22.371, 27.63, and 73.1692. We
recognize, however, that because of the lack of explicit rules in all services regarding tower construction near AM
arrays, it may not be feasible to resolve all pending complaints pursuant to existing rules. In such cases (i.e.,
complaints relating to services for which there are no explicit rules), we will process the pending complaint under
the new rules, and we direct the affected AM station to re-submit its complaint to the Commission within the one-
year timeframe and submit a showing in accordance with new Section 1.30002(h) of the Commission's Rules.
66 See new Section 1.30000.
67 See Appendix B, Section 1.30000 of the new Rules.
68 See notes 7-8, supra.
69 The potential damaging effects of tower construction near AM arrays are the same, regardless of whether the
tower is employed in the service of broadcast, auxiliary, cellular, private land mobile, or other use. As noted earlier,
(continued....)
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AM station seeking remediation to submit a showing that its operation has been adversely affected by
tower construction or modification authorized and either commenced or completed before or on the
effective date of the new rules. Such showings must be made within one year after the effective date of
the new rules. A one-year time frame will allow a potentially affected AM station sufficient time to
identify the source of the pattern disruption and prepare and submit an adverse impact showing. We
authorize the Commission staff, if necessary, to direct the tower owner to take appropriate ameliorative
action to correct disturbances to the radiation pattern of an AM station caused by the tower construction
or modification, such as installing, maintaining, and, if necessary, adjusting any detuning apparatus
necessary to restore proper operation of the AM antenna. This rule change does not impose any new
obligations on licensees or permittees with respect to disturbances caused to AM antenna patterns. It does
not alter the tower owner's underlying responsibility to cooperate and remediate interference caused to
existing AM stations. Rather, this change simply clarifies and codifies this implicit remediation
obligation, or the "newcomer" policy, a mainstay of interference protection.70
21.
Cost-Benefit Analysis. We believe that the benefits of our new rules outweigh any potential
costs. The new rules are part of the our effort to: (1) harmonize, streamline, and simplify the rules
regarding tower construction and modification near AM stations; (2) improve the protection afforded to
AM stations; and (3) reduce the time required to determine the impact of nearby tower construction on
affected AM stations and the expense associated with the analysis.
22.
Our current rules contain several sections concerning tower construction near AM antennas
(Sections 73.1692, 22.371, and 27.63), which impose differing requirements on the broadcast and
wireless entities, while other rule parts (such as Part 90 and Part 24) entirely lack provisions for protecting
AM stations from the possible effects of nearby tower construction. Our new rules consolidate the
disparate and service-specific rules and extends the rule to all Commission licensees and permittees
constructing towers. The adoption of the new rules will therefore mitigate confusion among FCC
licensees and permittees, given the current absence of explicit rules across all services, and ensure
consistent protection to AM stations. The new rules not only exclude many cases for which
measurements were previously required,71 but also streamline the process of determining the impact of
nearby tower construction and modification, thereby saving the tower proponent both time and money.
Finally, by permitting the use of moment method modeling, the new rules eliminate the need for costly,
time consuming field strength measurements.72 We therefore conclude that the public interest benefits of
the changes adopted herein outweigh any potential costs.
(Continued from previous page)
Sections 22.371, 27.63, and 73.1692 of the Commission's Rules contain explicit, albeit disparate, requirements for
protecting AM stations from the effects of nearby tower construction. Other rule parts, such as Part 90 and Part 24,
lack explicit provisions for protecting AM stations. Accordingly, an AM station adversely affected by tower
construction by a Part 90 or Part 24 licensee must rely on the licensee's cooperation and goodwill to alleviate the
interference, or if the interference cannot be resolved internally, file a complaint with the Commission. See, e.g.,
Comments of Crawford at 2, supra, note 64.
70 The fact that a new rule "is applied in a case arising from conduct antedating the [rule's] enactment" or "upsets
expectations based in prior law" does not make it retroactive. Landgraf v. USI Film Products, 114 S. Ct. 1483, 1499
(1994). Rather, a rule is retroactive only if it "attaches new legal consequences to events completed before its
enactment." Id. Such is not the case here.
71 The new rules eliminate short towers from consideration and exclude many routine cases in which antennas are
added to existing towers.
72 Many commenters also highlight the multiple benefits arising from the new rules, emphasizing that the new rules
will: (1) simplify and clarify the process of protecting AM stations whose antenna patterns can be adversely affected
by the proximity of new towers or antennas; (2) reduce confusion among affected FCC licensees with respect to the
proper procedures for the protection of AM broadcast stations; (3) reduce both the time and expense associated with
performing the analysis; and (4) reduce reliance on costly, time consuming, and ultimately ambiguous field strength
(continued....)
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IV.

SECOND ORDER ON RECONSIDERATION

23.
Background. In response to the Second Report and Order, which adopted rules permitting
AM radio licensees to use computer modeling techniques to demonstrate that directional AM antennas
perform as authorized, Cohen, Dippell and Everist, P.C. ("CDE") filed a timely petition for
reconsideration seeking clarification and alteration of the new rules. CDE claims that the new rules
adopted in the Second Report and Order do not clearly define what information an AM station should
submit with a moment method proof of performance pursuant to Section 73.151(c) of the rules, and also
do not explain how the Commission will determine whether such a proof of performance is acceptable.
CDE urges the Commission to clarify these questions with a Public Notice. Finally, CDE reiterates
comments it made earlier in this proceeding, questioning directional AM stations' use of computer
modeling techniques, given that such techniques do not account for certain effects of the local
environment on the AM antenna pattern.73
24.
Discussion. As CDE suggests, the new rules adopted in the Second Report and Order
represent a significant departure from long-established procedures in AM radio. In order to assist
licensees, the Media Bureau issued a Public Notice clarifying certain requirements of the new rules and
answering common questions.74 Accordingly, CDE's request to the same effect is now moot. Moreover,
the Media Bureau's experience with the new rules since the Public Notice indicates that most applicants
understand the requirements, and the Bureau stands ready to answer additional questions. Finally,
regarding CDE's repeated concern about the use of moment method techniques without regard to the
local environment, the Commission addressed this matter in the Second Report and Order.75 It is well
established that the Commission does not grant reconsideration for the purpose of debating matters on
which it has already deliberated.76 We therefore dismiss in part as moot and deny in all other respects
CDE's Petition for Reconsideration.

V.

CONCLUSION

25.
The rules adopted herein are designed to streamline and rationalize our rules with regard to
the way in which the potential impact of construction near AM stations can be assessed. Our actions
today, made possible by the support and contributions of a broad coalition of technical experts and
broadcasters, represent a significant step forward in modernizing our licensing procedures.
(Continued from previous page)
measurements. See Joint Comments at 2; Comments at Waterford at 2; Comments of NAB at 2; Comments of PCIA
at 1.
73 See July 23, 2007, Comments of CDE at 7.
74 See "Media Bureau Clarifies Procedures for AM Directional Antenna Performance Verification Using Moment
Method Modeling," Public Notice, DA 09-2340, released October 29, 2009.
75 See Second Report and Order, 23 FCC at 14271 (acknowledging concerns that a moment method proof will not
account for the effects of nearby reradiators on the AM pattern, but finding that the alternative of taking field
strength measurements in the presence of reradiating structures may offer no more accurate a depiction of the pattern
shape than moment method techniques do and, further, makes compliance very difficult for many AM stations).
76 See WWIZ, Inc., 37 FCC 685 (1965), aff'd sub. nom. Lorain Journal Co. v. FCC, 351 F.2d 824 (D.C. Cir. 1965).
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VI.

PROCEDURAL MATTERS

A. Regulatory Flexibility Analysis

26.
Pursuant to the Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980, as amended,77 the Commission has
prepared a Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis ("FRFA") of the possible significant economic impact
on small entities of the policies and rules addressed in this document. The FRFA is set forth in
Appendix C.

B. Paperwork Reduction Act Analysis

27.
This document contains new and modified information collection requirements subject to
the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), Public Law 104-13. The requirements will be submitted to
the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review under Section 3507(d) of the PRA. The
Commission will publish a separate notice in the Federal Register inviting comment on the new or revised
information collection requirements adopted in this document. The requirements will not go into effect
until OMB has approved them and the Commission has published a notice announcing the effective date
of the information collection requirements. In addition, this document contains new and modified
"information collection burdens for small business concerns with fewer than 25 employees," pursuant to
the Small Business Paperwork Relief Act of 2002, Public Law 107-198, see 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(4). In
regard to the new and modified information collection requirements adopted herein, we previously sought
specific comment on how the Commission might "further reduce the information collection burden for
small business concerns with fewer than 25 employees." We received no comments in response to this
issue. We find that the new and modified information collection requirements must apply fully to small
entities (as well as to others) to ensure that AM broadcast station antenna patterns are not disturbed.
28.
In this document, we have assessed the effects of the new rules for tower construction near
AM radio stations adopted herein, and find that these new rules would standardize and simplify the
information collection burden for all affected entities, including small business concerns with fewer than
25 employees.

C. Congressional Review Act

29.
The Commission will send a copy of the Third Report and Order, including the FRFA, in a
report to be sent to Congress and the Government Accountability Office pursuant to the Congressional
Review Act.78 In addition, the Commission will send a copy of the Third Report and Order, including the
FRFA, to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration. A copy of the Third
Report and Order
, including the FRFA (or summaries thereof), will also be published in the Federal
Register.79

D. Additional Information

30.
For additional information on this proceeding, please contact Susan Crawford,
Susan.Crawford@fcc.gov, (202) 418-2754, Audio Division, Media Bureau.

VII.

ORDERING CLAUSES

31.
Accordingly,

IT IS ORDERED

that, pursuant to the authority contained in Sections 1, 4(i)
303, 308, 309, 310, and 319 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended; 47 U.S.C. 151, 154(i),
303, 308, 309, 310, and 319, this Third Report and Order

IS ADOPTED

.

77 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.
78 See 5 U.S.C. 801(a)(1)(A).
79 See 5 U.S.C. 604(b).
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32.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED

that, pursuant to the authority contained in Sections 1, 4(i)
303, 308, 309, 310, and 319 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. 151, 154(i),
303, 308, 309, 310, and 319, 47 C.F.R. Part 1, Part 22, Part 27, and Part 73 of the Commission's Rules

ARE AMENDED

, as set forth in Appendix B.
33.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED

that the Petition for Reconsideration filed December 1,
2008, by Cohen, Dippell and Everist, P.C.

IS DISMISSED IN PART AS MOOT AND IS DENIED IN
ALL OTHER RESPECTS.

34.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED

that the rules contained herein

SHALL BECOME

EFFECTIVE

upon Commission publication of a document in the Federal Register announcing that OMB
has approved them.
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
Marlene H. Dortch
Secretary
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APPENDIX A

List of Commenters

AM Directional Antenna Performance Verification Coalition:
Broadcasters
Beasley Broadcast Group, Inc.
Bonneville International
Journal Broadcast Group
Buckley Broadcasting Corporation
Lincoln Financial Media
CBS Radio Inc.
Morris Communications Company, LLC
Citadel Broadcasting Company
Multicultural Radio Broadcasting, Inc.
Clear Channel Radio
Peak Broadcasting LLC
Cox Radio, Inc.
Radio One, Inc.
Crawford Broadcasting Company
Regent Communications
Cumulus Media Inc.
Saga Communications
Emmis Communications Corp.
Salem Communications Corporation
Entercom Communications Corp.
The Walt Disney Company
Entravision Communications Corp.
Consulting Engineers/Equipment Manufacturers
Carl T. Jones Corporation
Cavell, Mertz & Associates, Inc.
Communications Technologies, Inc.
duTreil, Lundin & Rackley, Inc.
Edward A. Schober, P.E., Radiotechniques Engineering, LLC
Hammett & Edison, Inc.
Hatfield & Dawson Consulting Engineers, LLC
Khanna & Guill, Inc.
Sellmeyer Engineering
Cohen, Dippell and Everist, P.C.
Crawford Broadcasting Company
Greater Media, Inc.
Hatfield & Dawson Consulting Engineers, LLC
Ronald L. Myers
National Association of Broadcasters
PCIA The Wireless Infrastructure Association
The Land Mobile Communications Council
Waterford Consultants, LLC
The Wireless Communications Association International, Inc.
List of Reply Commenters
AM Directional Antenna Performance Verification Coalition
PCIA--The Wireless Infrastructure Association
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APPENDIX B

Final Rules

PART 1 PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE
The authority for Part 1 continues to read as follows:
AUTHORITY: 47 U.S.C. 79 et seq.; 47 U.S.C. 151, 154(i), 154(j), 155, 157, 225, 227, 303(r), and 309.
Amend 1 to add Subpart AA as follows:
Subpart AA. Disturbance of AM broadcast station antenna patterns.
1.30000 Purpose. This rule part protects the operations of AM broadcast stations from nearby tower
construction that may distort the AM antenna patterns. All parties holding or applying for Commission
authorizations that propose to construct or make a significant modification to an antenna tower or support
structure in the immediate vicinity of an AM antenna, or propose to install an antenna on an AM tower,
are responsible for completing the analysis and notice process described in this subpart, and for taking
any measures necessary to correct disturbances of the AM radiation pattern, if such disturbances occur as
a result of the tower construction or modification or as a result of the installation of an antenna on an AM
tower. In the event these processes are not completed before an antenna structure is constructed, any
holder of or applicant for a Commission authorization is responsible for completing these processes
before locating or proposing to locate an antenna on the structure, as described in this subpart.
1.30001 Definitions. For purposes of this subpart:
(a) Wavelength at the AM frequency. In this subpart, critical distances from an AM station are described
in terms of the AM wavelength. The AM wavelength, expressed in meters, is computed as follows:
(300 meters)/(AM frequency in megahertz)=AM wavelength in meters.
For example, at the AM frequency of 1000 kHz, or 1 MHz, the wavelength is (300/1 MHz) = 300 meters.
(b) Electrical degrees at the AM frequency. This term describes the height of a proposed tower as a
function of the frequency of a nearby AM station. To compute tower height in electrical degrees, first
determine the AM wavelength in meters as described in paragraph (a). Tower height in electrical degrees
is computed as follows:
[(Tower height in meters)/AM wavelength in meters)] x 360 degrees = Tower height in electrical degrees.
For example, if the AM frequency is 1000 kHz, then the wavelength is 300 meters, per paragraph (a). A
nearby tower 75 meters tall is therefore [75/300] x 360 = 90 electrical degrees tall at the AM frequency.
(c) Proponent. The term proponent refers in this section to the party proposing tower construction or
significant modification of an existing tower or proposing installation of an antenna on an AM tower.
(d) Distance from the AM station. The distance shall be calculated from the tower coordinates in the case
of a nondirectional AM station, or from the array center coordinates given in CDBS or any successor
database for a directional AM station.
1.30002 Tower construction or modification near AM stations.
(a) Construction near a nondirectional AM station. Proponents of construction or significant modification
of a tower which is within one wavelength of a nondirectional AM station, and is taller than 60 electrical
degrees at the AM frequency, must notify the AM station at least 30 days in advance of the
commencement of construction. The proponent shall examine the potential impact of the construction or
modification as described in paragraph (c). If the construction or modification would distort the radiation
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pattern by more than 2 dB, the proponent shall be responsible for the installation and maintenance of any
detuning apparatus necessary to restore proper operation of the nondirectional antenna.
(b) Construction near a directional AM station. Proponents of construction or significant modification of
a tower which is within the lesser of 10 wavelengths or 3 kilometers of a directional AM station, and is
taller than 36 electrical degrees at the AM frequency, must notify the AM station at least 30 days in
advance of the commencement of construction. The proponent shall examine the potential impact of the
construction or modification as described in paragraph (c). If the construction or modification would
result in radiation in excess of the AM station's licensed standard pattern or augmented standard pattern
values, the proponent shall be responsible for the installation and maintenance of any detuning apparatus
necessary to restore proper operation of the directional antenna.
(c) Proponents of construction or significant modification of a tower within the distances defined in (a)
and (b) herein of an AM station shall examine the potential effects thereof using a moment method
analysis. The moment method analysis shall consist of a model of the AM antenna together with the
potential re-radiating tower in a lossless environment. The model shall employ the methodology
specified in 73.151(c) of this chapter, except that the AM antenna elements may be modeled as a series
of thin wires driven to produce the required radiation pattern, without any requirement for measurement
of tower impedances.
(d) A significant modification of a tower in the immediate vicinity of an AM station is defined as follows:
(1) any change that would alter the tower's physical height by 5 electrical degrees or more at the AM
frequency; or (2) the addition or replacement of one or more antennas or transmission lines on a tower
that has been detuned or base-insulated.
(e) The addition or modification of an antenna or antenna-supporting structure on a building shall be
considered a construction or modification subject to the analysis and notice requirements of this subpart if
and only if the height of the antenna-supporting structure alone exceeds the thresholds in paragraphs (a)
and (b) herein.
(f) With respect to an AM station that was authorized pursuant to a directional proof of performance
based on field strength measurements, the proponent of the tower construction or modification may, in
lieu of the study described in paragraph (c), demonstrate through measurements taken before and after
construction that field strength values at the monitoring points do not exceed the licensed values. In the
event that the pre-construction monitoring point values exceed the licensed values, the proponent may
demonstrate that post-construction monitoring point values do not exceed the pre-construction values.
Alternatively, the AM station may file for authority to increase the relevant monitoring- point value after
performing a partial proof of performance in accordance with 73.154 to establish that the licensed
radiation limit on the applicable radial is not exceeded.
(g) Tower construction or modification that falls outside the criteria described in the preceding paragraphs
is presumed to have no significant effect on an AM station. In some instances, however, an AM station
may be affected by tower construction or modification notwithstanding the criteria set forth above. In
such cases, an AM station may submit a showing that its operation has been affected by tower
construction or modification. Such a showing shall consist of either a moment method analysis as
described in paragraph (c), or of field strength measurements. The showing shall be provided to (i) the
tower proponent if the showing relates to a tower that has not yet been constructed or modified and
otherwise to the current tower owner, and (ii) to the Commission, within two years after the date of
completion of the tower construction or modification. If necessary, the Commission shall direct the tower
proponent or tower owner, if the tower proponent or tower owner holds a Commission authorization, to
install and maintain any detuning apparatus necessary to restore proper operation of the AM antenna. An
applicant for a Commission authorization may not propose, and a party holding a Commission
authorization may not locate, an antenna on any tower or support structure that has been shown to affect
an AM station's operation pursuant to this subparagraph, or for which a disputed showing of effect on an
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AM station's operation is pending, unless the applicant, party, or tower owner notifies the AM station and
takes appropriate action to correct the disturbance to the AM pattern.
(h) An AM station may submit a showing that its operation has been affected by tower construction or
modification that was commenced or completed prior to or on the effective date of the rules adopted in
this Part pursuant to MM Docket No. 93-177. Such a showing shall consist of either a moment method
analysis as described in paragraph (c), or of field strength measurements. The showing shall be provided
to the current tower owner and the Commission within one year of the effective date of the rules adopted
in this Part pursuant to MM Docket No. 93-177. If necessary, the Commission shall direct the tower
owner, if the tower owner holds a Commission authorization, to install and maintain any detuning
apparatus necessary to restore proper operation of the AM antenna.
(i) An applicant for a Commission authorization may not propose, and a party holding a Commission
authorization may not locate, an antenna on any tower or support structure, whether constructed before or
after the effective date of these rules, that meets the criteria in paragraph (a) and (b) of this section, unless
the analysis and notice process described in this subpart, and any necessary measures to correct
disturbances of the AM radiation pattern, have been completed by the tower owner, the party proposing to
locate the antenna, or any other party, either prior to construction or at any other time prior to the proposal
or antenna location.
1.30003. Installations on an AM antenna.
(a) Installations on a nondirectional AM tower. When antennas are installed on a nondirectional AM
tower the AM station shall determine the operating power by the indirect method (see 73.51). Upon
completion of the installation, antenna impedance measurements on the AM antenna shall be made. If the
resistance of the AM antenna changes by more than 2 percent (see 73.45(c)(1)), an application on FCC
Form 302-AM (including a tower sketch of the installation) shall be filed with the Commission for the
AM station to return to direct power measurement.
(b) Installations on a directional AM array. Before antennas are installed on a tower in a directional AM
array, the proponent shall notify the AM station so that, if necessary, the AM station may determine
operating power by the indirect method (see 73.51) and request special temporary authority pursuant to
73.1635 to operate with parameters at variance.
(1) For AM stations licensed via field strength measurements (see 73.151(a)), a partial proof of
performance as defined by 73.154 shall be conducted by the tower proponent both before and after
construction to establish that the AM array will not be and has not been adversely affected. If the
operating parameters of the AM array change following the installation, the results of the partial proof of
performance shall be filed by the AM station with the Commission on Form 302-AM.
(2) For AM stations licensed via a moment method proof (see 73.151(c)), a base impedance
measurement on the tower being modified shall be made by the tower proponent as described in
73.151(c)(1). The result of the new tower impedance measurement shall be retained in the station's
records. If the new measured base resistance and reactance values of the affected tower differ by more
than +/- 2 ohms and +/- 4 percent from the corresponding modeled resistance and reactance values
contained in the last moment method proof, then the station shall file Form 302-AM. The Form 302-AM
shall be accompanied by the new impedance measurements for the modified tower and a new moment
method model for each pattern in which the tower is a radiating element. Base impedance measurements
for other towers in the array, sampling system measurements, and reference field strength measurements
need not be repeated. The procedures described in this paragraph may be used as long as the affected
tower continues to meet the requirements for moment method proofing after the modification.
(c) When the AM station is required to file Form 302-AM following an installation as set forth above, the
Form 302-AM shall be filed before or simultaneously with any license application associated with the
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installation. If no license application is filed as a result of the installation, the Form 302-AM shall be
filed within 30 days after the completion of the installation.
1.30004. Notice of tower construction or modification near AM stations.
(a) Proponents of proposed tower construction or significant modification to an existing tower near an
AM station that are subject to the notification requirement in 1.30002-1.30003 shall provide notice of
the proposed tower construction or modification to the AM station at least 30 days prior to
commencement of the planned tower construction or modification. Notice shall be provided to any AM
station that is licensed or operating under Program Test Authority using the official licensee information
and address listed in CDBS or any successor database. Notification to an AM station and any responses
may be oral or written. If such notification and/or response is oral, the party providing such notification
or response must supply written documentation of the communication and written documentation of the
date of communication upon request of the other party to the communication or the Commission.
Notification must include the relevant technical details of the proposed tower construction or
modification. At a minimum, the notification should include the following:
Proponent's name and address.
Coordinates of the tower to be constructed or modified.
Physical description of the planned structure.
Results of the analysis showing the predicted effect on the AM pattern, if performed.
(b) Response to a notification should be made as quickly as possible, even if no technical problems are
anticipated. Any response to a notification indicating a potential disturbance of the AM radiation pattern
must specify the technical details and must be provided to the proponent within 30 days. If no response
to notification is received within 30 days, the proponent may proceed with the proposed tower
construction or modification.
(c) The 30-day response period is calculated from the date of receipt of the notification by the AM
station. If notification is by mail, this date may be ascertained by:
(1) The return receipt on certified mail;
(2) The enclosure of a card to be dated and returned by the recipient; or
(3) A conservative estimate of the time required for the mail to reach its destination, in
which case the estimated date when the 30-day period would expire shall be stated in the notification.
(d) An expedited notification period (less than 30 days) may be requested when deemed necessary by the
proponent. The notification shall be identified as "expedited" and the requested response date shall be
clearly indicated. The proponent may proceed with the proposed tower construction or modification prior
to the expiration of the 30-day notification period only upon receipt of written concurrence from the
affected AM station (or oral concurrence, with written confirmation to follow).
(e) To address immediate and urgent communications needs in the event of an emergency situation
involving essential public services, public health, or public welfare, a tower proponent may erect a
temporary new tower or make a temporary significant modification to an existing tower without prior
notice to potentially affected nearby AM stations, provided that the tower proponent shall provide written
notice to such AM stations within five days of the construction or modification of the tower and shall
cooperate with such AM stations to promptly remedy any pattern distortions that arise as a consequence
of such construction.
PART 22 PUBLIC MOBILE SERVICES
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The authority for Part 22 continues to read as follows:
AUTHORITY: 47 U.S.C. 154, 302, 303, 309, and 332.
22.371 [Removed].
Remove 22.371.
PART 27 MISCELLANEOUS WIRELESS COMMUNICATIONS SERVICES
The authority for Part 27 continues to read as follows:
AUTHORITY: 47 U.S.C. 154, 301, 302, 303, 307, 309, 332, 336, and 337 unless otherwise noted.
27.63 [Removed].
Remove 27.63.
PART 73 RADIO BROADCAST SERVICES
The authority for Part 73 continues to read as follows:
AUTHORITY: 47 U.S.C. 154, 303, 334, 336 and 339.
Amend 73.45(c) to read as follows:
73.45 AM antenna systems.
*****
(c) Should any changes be made or otherwise occur which would possibly alter the resistance of the
antenna system, the licensee must commence the determination of the operating power by a method
described in 73.51(a)(1) or (d). (If the changes are due to the addition of antennas to the AM tower, see
1.30003.) ***
Amend 73.316(e) to read as follows:
73.316 FM antenna systems.
*****
(e) Where an FM licensee or permittee proposes to mount its antenna on or near an AM tower, as defined
in 1.30002, the FM licensee or permittee must comply with 1.30003 or 1.30002, depending on
whether the antenna is proposed to be mounted on an AM tower ( 1.30003) or near an AM tower (
1.30002).
Amend 73.685(h) to read as follows:
73.685 Transmitter location and antenna system.
*****
(h) Where the TV licensee or permittee proposes to mount its antenna on or near an AM tower, as defined
in 1.30002, the TV licensee or permittee must comply with 1.30003 or 1.30002 .
Amend 73.875(c) by revising the last sentence to read as follows:
73.875 Modification of transmission systems.
*****
(c)*** In addition, for applications filed solely pursuant to paragraphs (c)(1) or (c)(2) of this section,
where the installation is on or near an AM tower, as defined in 1.30002, an exhibit demonstrating
compliance with 1.30003 or 1.30002, as applicable, is also required.
(1)***
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(2)***
Amend 73.1675(c)(1) by revising the last sentence to read as follows:
73.1675 Auxiliary antennas.
*****
(c)(1)*** Where an FM, TV, or Class A TV licensee or permittee proposes to mount an auxiliary facility
on an AM tower, it must also demonstrate compliance with 1.30003 in the license application.
*****
Amend 73.1690(c) by revising the last sentence to read as follows:
73.1690 Modification of transmission systems.
*****
(c) ***In addition, except for applications solely filed pursuant to paragraphs (c)(6) or (c)(9) of this
section, where the installation is located on or near an AM tower, as defined in 1.30002, an exhibit
demonstrating compliance with 1.30003 or 1.30002, as applicable, is also required.
*****
73.1692 [Removed].
Remove 73.1692.
Amend 73.6025(c) to read as follows:
73.6025 Antenna system and station location.
*****
(c) Where a Class A TV licensee or permittee proposes to mount its antenna on or near an AM tower, as
defined in 1.30002, the Class A TV licensee or permittee must comply with 1.30003 or 1.30002.
*****
Amend 74.1237(e) to read as follows:
74.1237 Antenna location.
*****
(e) Where an FM translator or booster licensee or permittee proposes to mount its antenna on or near an
AM tower, as defined in 1.30002, the FM translator or booster licensee or permittee must comply with
1.30003 or 1.30002.
*****
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APPENDIX C

Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis

1.
As required by the Regulatory Flexibility Act, as amended ("RFA"),1 a Supplemental Initial
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis ("IRFA") was incorporated in the Second Further Notice of Proposed
Rule Making
("Second Further Notice") in this proceeding.2 The Commission sought written public
comments on the proposals in the Second Further Notice. None were received. This Final Regulatory
Flexibility Analysis ("FRFA") conforms to the RFA.3

A. Need for, and Objectives of, the Proposed Rules

2.
In the Third Report and Order in this proceeding, the Commission harmonizes and
streamlines the Commission's rules regarding tower construction and modification near AM stations,
incorporating moment method computer modeling techniques and simplifying the rule provisions. The
new procedures were adopted in order to simplify the Media Bureau's licensing procedures.
3.
The further rulemaking proceeding leading to the Third Report and Order was initiated to
further reduce the regulatory burden on AM broadcasters by permitting the use of computer modeling
techniques to verify AM directional antenna performance. In the Second Further Notice, the Commission
tentatively concluded that the issue of tower construction and modification near AM stations should be
addressed by a single rule applying to all tower construction and sought comment on proposed new rules
which would appear in Part 1 of the Commission's Rules.
4.
Existing Commission rules require Commission authorization holders to notify AM stations
and take appropriate action when a tower is constructed within a fixed distance of an AM station. The
new rules define the critical distance for directional AM stations as any distance less than ten wavelengths
of the frequency of the AM station up to a maximum distance of three kilometers, as specified in existing
rules for certain wireless licensees.4 The rules designate moment method modeling as the principal means
of determining whether a nearby tower affects an AM pattern. The rules also allow traditional partial
proof measurements taken before and after tower construction as an alternative procedure when the AM
station in question was licensed pursuant to field strength measurements. Lastly, the rules eliminate short
towers from consideration and exclude many routine cases in which antennas are added to existing
towers.
5.
More specifically, the Commission adopted a threshold height for antennas, excluding most
antenna structures atop buildings, except where the structure alone would be a significant re-radiator as
defined in Section 1.30002(a) or (b). It also adopted a 30-day period in which those who build or modify
a tower can notify an AM station in order to reduce the potential for disputes while providing adequate
notice to AM licensees. Per one commenter's suggestion, the Commission added specific procedures
including requests for expedited notice. In the absence of comments on the issue of when the notification
procedures would apply, the Commission adopted its proposal to apply the notification procedures to AM
stations that are licensed or operating pursuant to program test authority. It clarified the determination of
distance from a directional AM station by specifying the use of the array center coordinates now used in
the consolidated database system. It further adopted the rule provision in Section 1.30002(g) addressing

1 See 5 U.S.C. 603. The RFA, see 5 U.S.C. 601-612, has been amended by the Small Business Regulatory
Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996 (SBREFA), Pub. L. No. 104-121, 110 Stat. 857 (1996).
2 Second Further Notice, 23 FCC Rcd at 14272.
3 See 5 U.S.C. 604.
4 The critical distance for non-directional AM stations is one wavelength of the frequency of the AM station.
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tower construction otherwise excluded, with certain modifications. In general, the Commission will apply
the notification requirements only to Commission applicants, licensees, and permittees prospectively for
towers constructed after the effective date of the new rules, but there may be circumstances in which an
AM station has been adversely affected by prior tower construction. In such circumstances, the affected
AM station may seek relief by filing a showing of adverse impact within two years of the effective date of
the new rules, and the Commission may direct the tower owner to install and maintain any detuning
apparatus necessary to restore proper operation of the AM station.

B. Summary of Significant Issues Raised by Public Comments in Response to the

Supplemental IRFA.

6.
None.

C. Description and Estimate of the Number of Small Entities To Which the Proposed

Rules Will Apply

7.
The RFA directs agencies to provide a description of, and, where feasible, an estimate of the
number of small entities that may be affected by the proposed rules, if adopted.5 The RFA defines the
term "small entity" as having the same meaning as the terms "small business," "small organization," and
"small governmental entity" under Section 3 of the Small Business Act.6 In addition, the term "small
business" has the same meaning as the term "small business concern" under the Small Business Act.7 A
small business concern is one which: (1) is independently owned and operated; (2) is not dominant in its
field of operation; and (3) satisfies any additional criteria established by the SBA.8
8.
Nationwide, there are a total of approximately 22.4 million small businesses, according to
SBA data.9 A "small organization" is generally "any not-for-profit enterprise which is independently
owned and operated and is not dominant in its field."10 Nationwide, as of 2002, there were approximately
1.6 million small organizations.11 The term "small governmental jurisdiction" is defined generally as
"governments of cities, towns, townships, villages, school districts, or special districts, with a population
of less than fifty thousand."12 Census Bureau data for 2002 indicate that there were 87,525 local
governmental jurisdictions in the United States.13 We estimate that, of this total, 84,377 entities were
"small governmental jurisdictions."14 Thus, we estimate that most governmental jurisdictions are small.

5 5 U.S.C. 603(b)(3).
6 Id. 601(3) (incorporating by reference the definition of "small business concern" in 15 U.S.C. 632). Pursuant
to the RFA, the statutory definition of a small business applies, "unless an agency, after consultation with the Office
of Advocacy of the SBA and after opportunity for public comment, establishes one or more definitions of the term
where appropriate to the activities of the agency and publishes the definition(s) in the Federal Register."
7 Id.
8 15 U.S.C. 632.
9 See SBA, Programs and Services, SBA Pamphlet No. CO-0028, at page 40 (July 2002).
10 5 U.S.C. 601(4).
11 Independent Sector, The New Nonprofit Almanac & Desk Reference (2002).
12 5 U.S.C. 601(5).
13 U.S. Census Bureau, Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2006, Section 8, page 272, Table 415.
14 We assume that the villages, school districts, and special districts are small, and total 48,558. See U.S. Census
Bureau, Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2006, section 8, page 273, Table 417. For 2002, Census Bureau
data indicate that the total number of county, municipal, and township governments nationwide was 38,967, of
which 35,819 were small. Id.
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9.

Wireless Telecommunications Carriers (except Satellite).

This industry comprises
establishments engaged in operating and maintaining switching and transmission facilities to provide
communications via the airwaves. Establishments in this industry have spectrum licenses and provide
services using that spectrum, such as cellular phone services, paging services, wireless Internet access, and
wireless video services.15 The appropriate size standard under SBA rules is for the category Wireless
Telecommunications Carriers. The size standard for that category is that a business is small if it has 1,500
or fewer employees.16 Under the present and prior categories, the SBA has deemed a wireless business to
be small if it has 1,500 or fewer employees.17 For this category, census data for 2007 show that there were
1,383 firms that operated for the entire year.18 Of this total, 1,368 firms had employment of 999 or fewer
employees and 15 had employment of 1000 employees or more.19 Thus under this category and the
associated small business size standard, the Commission estimates that the majority of wireless
telecommunications carriers (except satellite) are small entities that may be affected by our proposed
action.20
10.

Non-Licensee Tower Owners.

Many communications towers, while used to support
multiple antennas for Commission licensees in various services, are owned by entities which are not
themselves Commission licensees. Although tower owners that do not hold Commission authorizations
are not directly responsible for complying with the new rules, Commission authorization holders cannot
lease space and locate an antenna on a non-licensee's tower that is causing a disturbance to the radiation
pattern of an AM station, unless the applicant, licensee, or tower owner takes appropriate ameliorative
steps to correct the disturbance. Therefore, tower owners that do not hold Commission authorizations may
be indirectly affected by the rules adopted in this proceeding. Communications towers fall into two
categories: those requiring antenna structure registration, and those exempt from registration. The
Commission's rules require that any entity proposing to construct an antenna structure over 200 feet or
within the glide slope of an airport must register the antenna structure with the Commission on FCC Form
854.21 As of September 3, 2008, there were 97,617 registration records in a 'Constructed' status and 13,047
registration records in a 'Granted, Not Constructed' status in the Antenna Structure Registration (ASR)
database. This includes both towers registered to licensees and towers registered to non-licensee tower
owners. The Commission does not keep information from which we can easily determine how many of
these towers are registered to non-licensees or how many non-licensees have registered towers.22
Regarding towers that do not require antenna structure registration, we do not collect information as to the
number of such towers in use and therefore cannot estimate the number of tower owners who would be
subject to the proposed new rules. Moreover, the SBA has not developed a size standard for small

15 http://www.census.gov/cgi-bin/sssd/naics/naicsrch?code=517210&search=2007%20NAICS%20Search
16 13 C.F.R. 121.201, NAICS code 517210.
17 13 C.F.R. 121.201, NAICS code 517210. The now-superseded, pre-2007 C.F.R. citations were 13 C.F.R.
121.201, NAICS codes 517211 and 517212 (referring to the 2002 NAICS).
18 U.S. Census Bureau, Subject Series: Information, Table 5, "Establishment and Firm Size: Employment Size of
Firms for the United States: 2007 NAICS Code 517210" (issued Nov. 2010).
19 Id. Available census data do not provide a more precise estimate of the number of firms that have employment of
1,500 or fewer employees; the largest category provided is for firms with "100 employees or more."
20See http://factfinder.census.gov/servlet/IBQTable?_bm=y&-fds_name=EC0700A1&-geo_id=&-_skip=600&;-
ds_name=EC0751SSSZ5&-_lang=en
21 47 C.F.R. 17.4(a), 17.7(a).
22 We note, however, that approximately 13,000 towers are registered to 10 cellular carriers with 1,000 or more
employees.
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businesses in the category "Tower Owners." Therefore, we are unable to estimate the number of non-
licensee tower owners that are small entities. We assume, however, that nearly all non-licensee tower
companies are small businesses under the SBA's definition for cellular and other wireless
telecommunications services.23
11.

Radio Broadcasting

. The policies adopted in the Third Report and Order apply to radio
broadcast licensees, and potential licensees of radio service. The SBA defines a radio broadcast station as
a small business if such station has no more than $7 million in annual receipts.24 Business concerns
included in this industry are those primarily engaged in broadcasting aural programs by radio to the
public.25 According to Commission staff review of the BIA Publications, Inc. Master Access Radio
Analyzer Database on as of January 31, 2011, about 10,820 (97 percent) of 11,100 commercial radio
stations) have revenues of $7 million or less and thus qualify as small entities under the SBA definition.
We note, however, that, in assessing whether a business concern qualifies as small under the above
definition, business (control) affiliations26 must be included. Our estimate, therefore, likely overstates the
number of small entities that might be affected by our action, because the revenue figure on which it is
based does not include or aggregate revenues from affiliated companies.
12.
In addition, an element of the definition of "small business" is that the entity not be
dominant in its field of operation. We are unable at this time to define or quantify the criteria that would
establish whether a specific radio station is dominant in its field of operation. Accordingly, the estimate of
small businesses to which rules may apply do not exclude any radio station from the definition of a small
business on this basis and therefore may be over-inclusive to that extent. Also as noted, an additional
element of the definition of "small business" is that the entity must be independently owned and operated.
We note that it is difficult at times to assess these criteria in the context of media entities and our estimates
of small businesses to which they apply may be over-inclusive to this extent.
13.

FM Translator Stations and Low Power FM Stations.

The new rules apply to licensees
of FM translator and booster stations and low power FM (LPFM) stations, as well as to potential licensees
in these radio services. The same SBA definition that applies to radio broadcast licensees would apply to
these stations. The SBA defines a radio broadcast station as a small business if such station has no more
than $7.0 million in annual receipts.27 Currently, there are approximately 6,105 licensed FM translator and
booster stations and 824 licensed LPFM stations.28 Given the nature of these services, we will presume
that all of these licensees qualify as small entities under the SBA definition.
14.

Television Broadcasting.

The SBA defines a television broadcasting station as a small
business if such station has no more than $14.0 million in annual receipts.29 Business concerns included in

23 13 C.F.R. 121.201, North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code 517212. Under this
category, a business is small if it has 1,500 or fewer employees.
24 See 13 C.F.R. 121.201, NAICS Code 515112.
25 Id.
26 "[Business concerns] are affiliates of each other when one concern controls or has the power to control the other
or a third party or parties controls or has to power to control both." 13 C.F.R. 121.103(a)(1).
27 See 13 C.F.R. 121.201, NAICS Code 515112.
28 See News Release, "Broadcast Station Totals as of December 31, 2007" (rel. March 18, 2008) ("Broadcast Station
Totals
") (http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-280836A1.doc).
29 See 13 C.F.R. 121.201, NAICS Code 515120 (2007).
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this industry are those "primarily engaged in broadcasting images together with sound."30 The
Commission has estimated the number of licensed commercial television stations to be 1,995.31 According
to Commission staff review of the BIA Kelsey Inc. Media Access Pro Television Database (BIA) as of
January 31, 2011, 1,006 (or about 78 percent) of an estimated 1,298 commercial television stations32 in the
United States have revenues of $14 million or less and, thus, qualify as small entities under the SBA
definition. The Commission has estimated the number of licensed noncommercial educational ("NCE")
television stations to be 396.33 We note, however, that, in assessing whether a business concern qualifies
as small under the above definition, business (control) affiliations34 must be included. Our estimate,
therefore, likely overstates the number of small entities that might be affected by our action, because the
revenue figure on which it is based does not include or aggregate revenues from affiliated companies. The
Commission does not compile and otherwise does not have access to information on the revenue of NCE
stations that would permit it to determine how many such stations would qualify as small entities.
15.
In addition, an element of the definition of "small business" is that the entity not be
dominant in its field of operation. We are unable at this time to define or quantify the criteria that would
establish whether a specific television station is dominant in its field of operation. Accordingly, the
estimate of small businesses to which rules may apply do not exclude any television station from the
definition of a small business on this basis and are therefore over-inclusive to that extent. Also, as noted,
an additional element of the definition of "small business" is that the entity must be independently owned
and operated. We note that it is difficult at times to assess these criteria in the context of media entities
and our estimates of small businesses to which they apply may be over-inclusive to this extent.

D. Description of Projected Reporting, Recordkeeping, and Other Compliance

Requirements

16.
The Third Report and Order establishes a single protection scheme for tower construction
near AM tower arrays and designates "moment method" computer modeling as the principal means of
determining whether a nearby tower affects an AM radiation pattern. Overall, the changes we are adopting
are designed to simplify the requirements of the existing rules and reduce the time and expense required to
determine the impact of nearby tower construction or significant modification on affected AM stations.
Specifically, although the new rules require modest engineering analysis, the use of computer modeling is
less onerous, time consuming, and costly than the existing proof of performance requirements. By
eliminating short towers from consideration and excluding many routine cases in which antennas are added
to existing towers, the new rules reduce the regulatory burdens. The new rules will modify and reduce the

30 Id. This category description continues, "These establishments operate television broadcasting studios and
facilities for the programming and transmission of programs to the public. These establishments also produce or
transmit visual programming to affiliated broadcast television stations, which in turn broadcast the programs to the
public on a predetermined schedule. Programming may originate in their own studios, from an affiliated network, or
from external sources." Separate census categories pertain to businesses primarily engaged in producing
programming. See Motion Picture and Video Production, NAICS code 512110; Motion Picture and Video
Distribution, NAICS Code 512120; Teleproduction and Other Post-Production Services, NAICS Code 512191; and
Other Motion Picture and Video Industries, NAICS Code 512199.
31 See Broadcast Station Totals, supra note 28.
32 We recognize that this total differs slightly from that contained in Broadcast Station Totals, supra, note 28;
however, we are using BIA's estimate for purposes of this revenue comparison.
33 See Broadcast Station Totals, supra, note 28.
34 "[Business concerns] are affiliates of each other when one concern controls or has the power to control the other
or a third party or parties controls or has to power to control both." 13 C.F.R. 121.103(a)(1).
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overall reporting, recordkeeping, and compliance requirements of tower proponents and AM station
licensees and permittees. The requirements, detailed below, will affect small and large companies equally.
17.
The new rules require a party proposing to construct a new tower or significantly modify an
existing tower within the pertinent critical distance (the "tower proponent") to provide notice to the AM
station at least 30 days prior to the planned commencement of construction. The notification must include
the following information: (1) the tower proponent's name and address; (2) coordinates of the tower to be
constructed or modified; (3) physical description of the planned construction; and (4) results of the
analysis showing the predicted effect on the AM pattern, if performed. Responses to a notification must
specify the technical details and be provided to the tower proponent within 30 days.
18.
The rules designate moment method modeling as the principal means of determining
whether a nearby tower affects an AM pattern. The rules, however, allow traditional "partial proof"
measurements taken before and after tower construction as an alternative procedure when the potentially
affected AM station was licensed pursuant to field strength measurements, as opposed to computer
modeling. The tower proponent is responsible for the installation and maintenance of any detuning
apparatus necessary to restore the AM station's radiation pattern.
19.
The new rules permit AM stations to submit a showing that tower construction not
otherwise subject to the notice and remediation requirements has affected the AM station operations. The
showing must consist of either a moment method analysis or field strength measurements and be provided
to the tower proponent or owner and to the Commission either (1) within two years after the date of
completion of the tower construction or modification, or (2) in the case of operation adversely affected by
tower construction or alteration that occurred prior to the effective date of the new rules, within one year of
the effective date of the new rules. The Commission, if necessary, can direct the tower proponent or
owner to install and maintain any detuning apparatus necessary to restore proper operation of the AM
antenna.
20.
AM station licensees will continue to be required to file FCC Form 302-AM before or
simultaneously with any license application associated with installations on the AM antenna or within 30
days after the completion of the installation.35

E. Steps Taken to Minimize Significant Impact on Small Entities, and Significant

Alternatives Considered

21.
The RFA requires an agency to describe any significant alternatives that might minimize
any significant impact on small entities. Such alternatives may include the following four alternatives
(among others): (1) the establishment of differing compliance or reporting requirements or timetables that
take into account the resources available to small entities; (2) the clarification, consolidation, or
simplification of compliance or reporting requirements under the rule for small entities; (3) the use of
performance, rather than design standards; and (4) an exemption from coverage of the rule, or any part
thereof, for small entities.36
22.
As noted, we are directed under law to describe any such alternatives we consider, including
alternatives not explicitly listed above.37 In the Third Report and Order, the Commission revised certain
provisions of the proposed rules set forth in the Second Further Notice in response to concerns expressed

35 See New Section 1.30003 of the Rules.
36 5 U.S.C. 603(c).
37 5 U.S.C. 603(b).
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by commenters, several of whom represent small entities. We believe that the new rules will reduce the
compliance burden on most Commission licensees, and that this reduction will be particularly beneficial to
small entities.
23.
Specifically, the Second Further Notice proposed to cover circumstances that would be
otherwise excluded from the AM proximity rules. For example, there may be circumstances in which a
tower more than 3 kilometers away may affect a directional AM station. Similarly, a short tower that
would be otherwise excluded from study may affect an AM station if it is very close, i.e., within the near
field of the AM antenna. Commenters, including small entities, were divided on this issue. According to
Waterford Consultants, "the proposed rules leave the tower proponents' responsibilities open-ended."
Waterford asserted that tower proponents need to have their financial obligations clearly defined from the
outset.38 Greater Media supported the rule provision, stating that "there are no absolutes in such
situations."39 The Joint Commenters supported the rule provision with modifications. They advocated
defining the type of analysis that would constitute a credible showing that the tower construction has
affected the AM station. In particular, the Joint Commenters recommended that the AM station must
supply either a moment method analysis or field strength measurements to support its claim. The tower
proponent, according to the Joint Commenters, should be afforded an opportunity to respond to the AM
station's showing of adverse impact. Finally, the Joint Commenters proposed that the rule include a two-
year time limit within which the AM station must make a claim of adverse impact.40
24.
We adopted the rule provision in Section 1.30002(g) addressing tower construction
otherwise excluded, with certain modifications. We felt that defining the type of showing required from an
AM station and requiring the AM station to share the study with the tower proponent, as the Joint
Commenters suggest, would facilitate resolution of possible problems. We also acknowledged the burden
of potentially open-ended financial obligations, which would affect small entities. We therefore required
that showings of adverse impact under this rule section be made within two years of the date of the tower
construction or significant modification.
25.
We believe that the rule provision discussed above offers significant benefits to small
entities. It facilitates conflict resolution between the parties, which allows small entities to resolve issues
on a grassroots level. We believe it adopts a more economically advantageous method of conflict
resolution because it is likely to be faster, more informal, and may avoid the time and expense of hiring
legal or technical counsel. The new rule also limits the time frame in which showings of adverse impact
can be made, which benefits small entities because it avoids open-ended financial obligations. Lastly, the
rule gives examples of appropriate showings required from an AM station. Such examples give
predictability and allow small entities to plan, which can help limit the economic impact of making an
adverse impact showing. Accordingly, by adopting policies that are more specific, including examples and
a time line, the Commission adopted a rule that imposes a substantially less significant economic impact.

F. Federal Rules that May Duplicate, Overlap, or Conflict With the Proposed Rules

26.
None.

38 See Comments of Waterford at 5.
39 See Comments of Greater Media at 3.
40 See Joint Comments at 6.
29

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