Mark-Up Adds Elements to Satellite Reauthorization Bill

New version would require FCC to study if Nielsen DMA system is best to determine markets

There has yet to be a vote on a satellite reauthorization bill, but a version of the bill being marked up in the House Energy & Commerce Committee, introduced as an amendment by Communications Subcommittee Chairman Rick Boucher (D-Va.), includes a number of new elements.

The new version requires the FCC to study whether there is a better way to determine markets than the Nielsen DMA system and whether there needs to be a better way to determine who is ineligible to receive a distant signal than the current measure of a 30 ft. antenna.

The bill also would allow DISH network back into the distant network signal-delivery business in exchange for its agreement to deliver local signals in all 210 markets, which it has agreed to do within two years.

Boucher has been pushing for that, in part because some of his constituents are in markets without local-into-local service.