What will it mean for you? Big broadcast efforts afoot in DC right now
In partnership with the National Association of Broadcasters, it’s shaping up to be a busy season of DC activity that could affect Arizona broadcasters. Here’s what we’re watching:
Local Journalism Sustainability Act (LJSA)
After months of engagement by broadcasters, a journalism payroll tax credit has been included in the US House-passed Build Back Better reconciliation bill. Now we await the US Senate’s approval. While there remain some hurdles, this legislation would provide tax credits that total tens of thousands of dollars to local TV and radio stations that hire more local journalists.
Preservation of Local Journalism
In the age of Big Tech, Congress is focusing on hearings and potentially new legislation to pull back their market power on a range of issues, and we are focused on the advertising space and their market dominance there. This involves fighting for the Journalism Competition and Preservation Act, legislation that would allow broadcasters to jointly negotiate with the largest tech companies for compensation. Unlike other bills that have been introduced which would specifically limit the market power of Big Tech platforms, this bill would relax regulations on broadcasters as well as newspapers.
The Local Radio Freedom Act (LRFA) has been reintroduced this Congress in both the House and in the Senate, with 201 co-sponsors in the US House. We will continue to work to get a majority of the House, which is 218 members of Congress, signed on again as we have done in the last few Congresses. The music labels and their allies in Congress are working hard to push for a federally mandated royalty on AM and FM radio. We’ve working to stop that!
Congress is still working on a large spending bill which would enact various changes to Medicare, new Green Energy policies and other family and labor law changes. This legislation could cost as much as $1.75 trillion, which Congress intends to pay for. As with every new spending bill that Congress considers, the idea of paying for it using changes to the deductibility of advertising is always on the table. Working with our congressional champions we are successfully pushing back on any efforts to include changes to the advertising deduction in their efforts and if and until the legislation is signed into law, we will continue to advocate against any such changes.