On February 11, 2019, the FCC’s Incentive Auction Task Force and Media Bureau released a Public Notice giving status report on the repack, announced a “true up” on the 92.5 percent funds allocation for Full Power and Class A stations, and detailed the final close out procedures.
Notably, the Public Notice states:
- All 175 reverse auction winning bidders have been paid, with only 41 bidders electing to going off air. There are 104 stations that are in channel sharing arrangements and 30 U to V auction winners.
- 172 of the total 987 repacked stations have successfully vacated their pre-auction channel, representing over 17 percent of the total after the completion of only the first of the 10 phases.
- As of February 11, 2019, the FCC has reimbursed full power and Class A stations and MVPDs for submitted invoices a total of approximately $382 million. The FCC strongly encourages stations to continue to timely submit invoices for reimbursement.
- 2,160 displacement applications were filed by LPTV/translator stations, and over 95 percent have been acted on as of today. Should any applications remain mutually exclusive after the FCC completes processing applications filed during the Settlement Window (which were due last month), a schedule will be set for them to be subject to the Commission’s competitive bidding rules.
- The FCC will conclude its LPTV/translator reimbursement rulemaking by the end of next month.
- As part of its $50 million consumer education outreach, the FCC has launched the consumer page FCC.gov/TVrescan, and has participated in over 31 radio interviews.
- A number of stations have revised their cost estimates with more detailed information as construction planning and execution has proceeded, which has changed the total reimbursement demand. As a result, the current allocation (set in April 2018) for some stations is significantly below 92.5 percent of the entity’s current total verified estimate. The FCC is therefore allocating an additional $68.1 million to 316 full power and Class A stations. These stations will be notified of this specific allocation via an email from the FCC. Additional allocation amounts will also be reflected in the station’s CORES account.
- After a station has completed its required activities to move to final facilities on its new channel and has submitted all of its supporting documentation, but no later than a deadline to be announced by the Media Bureau, it should use the Reimbursement Form to notify the Bureau that the station has relocated and submitted all supporting documentation and requests for reimbursement. After receipt of such notice, the Reimbursement Form will be locked and the entity will not be able to submit additional supporting documentation and requests for reimbursement of actual costs incurred.
- The Fund Administrator will provide each station with a financial reconciliation statement that details verified, estimated amounts; allocated amounts; amounts requested for reimbursement; and amounts disbursed by the FCC. Additionally, the reconciliation statement will contain information outlining any additional amounts payable by the FCC to the entity (or, alternatively, owed to the FCC by the entity if the entity has been overpaid).
- The authorized point of contact for each station should review the financial reconciliation statement for accuracy and completeness and, upon concurrence, return an executed version of the financial reconciliation statement to the Fund Administrator. The Media Bureau will then provide the station with an interim close-out letter and issue any payments currently due, subject to the station’s available allocation. The FCC will then issue a final close-out letter. The final account close-out will occur no later than July 3, 2023 (the current statutory end of the reimbursement period).