Sen. Burr Calls FCC Proposal for Online Public Files Unnecessary Burden

Concerned with costs to stations of new reporting requirements
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Senator Richard Burr (R-N.C.) has told the FCC he thinks its proposal that TV station put sponsorship ID info in an online public file database is a "burdensome and unnecessary" recordkeeping requirement for TV stations.

In a letter to FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, Burr said that while the FCC requires "some" sponsorship IDs to be disclosed on air, the FCC has never required stations to maintain a log of all sponsorship IDs, and suggested it should not start now.

He did not expressly oppose adding station political files to the public file, but he suggested that, too, was a burden.

He was particularly concerned with the cost to stations of new reporting requirements and the impact on the proposed requirements, including likely duplicative recordkeeping, to smaller stations. He took issue with the FCC's contention that creating and hosting the online file would relieve TV stations of administrative burdens.

Saying the FCC's proposal did not include a cost-benefit analysis of recordkeeping requirements, Burr asked the chairman to answer a number of questions, including an estimate of the annual cost to the government and how the FCC plans to pay for it, and the annual cost to industry.

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