Communities need Low Power FM Radio

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on Tuesday is scheduled to consider rules that will likely diminish the operation of Low Power FM (LPFM) Radio stations that provide valuable information and diverse viewpoints to local communities. These changes are likely to grant priority of airwaves to commercial stations wanting translator frequencies over local community LPFM stations. Low Power FM stations are radio stations run by non-profit organizations such as local governments, health and social service groups, youth and senior groups and others that serve the local community. They provide an alternative to commercial radio and allow for much greater diversity of communities to access the public’s airwaves. In turn, LPFM stations add to the political debate by increasing the diversity of viewpoints the public hears as they make decisions in our democracy.

“In this era of media consolidation, we need Low Power FM radio stations to provide a much-needed outlet for local and diverse voices of our communities,” said Common Cause President Bob Edgar. “The FCC must prioritize access to the public’s airwaves to these local voices over the desires of corporations to find yet another signal to rebroadcast what they are already airing on another station. This should be a no-brainer.”

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