FCC Starts Paying TV Station Auction Winners

Includes every winning station with sufficient banking info

The FCC is finally ready to show broadcasters the money for giving up spectrum for wireless broadband.

The FCC has directed the U.S. Department of the Treasury to pay winning reverse auction TV station bidders whose banking info is in order, which is all but one station according to the FCC's list of stations.

The auction ended April 13 with 175 broadcasters getting a tad over $10 billion, with all but one of the stations cleared for payoff.

The FCC expects the payments to come within days of the notice. In fact, for the purposes of deadlines, the FCC is deeming stations paid five business days from July 20. For example, an off-air winner that did not select the channel-sharing option—there are only 12—has 90 days from July 27 to exit.

Sharers, which are most stations, have 180 days to exit their channels, 120 days to file a construction permit, and 90 days to say if they need more than 120 days to file a permit. All those will trigger July 27.