Want to Start a Radio Station? Here is What You Need to Know

On April 21, the Federal Communications Commission announced it will accept applications for full-power non-commercial radio stations later this year. The application window is Nov. 2-9.

The potential for non-commercial broadcasting to impact communities is tremendous. Interested nonprofits are encouraged to get their materials in order soon to apply in November. The FCC’s Form 340, its application, includes the following points of documentation:

  • Identify all individuals and organizations whose interest in the applicant are “attributable”
  • Financial proof the organization has sufficient net liquid assets to construct and operate the station for three months without additional funding
  • State/City/Channel mapping
  • Tower Coordinates and Height/Antenna Height and Type (e.g., directional or non-directional).

In October 2020, NFCB hosted a webinar on the filing window:

Thus far, it has not been announced what regions will be most likely to be considered for licenses, though applicants may wish to consult with a broadcast engineer to determine the possibility for openings locally. It is expected that the range of options for prospective licensees will be limited to smaller communities, due to the availability of radio spectrum.

Member station attendees to NFCB’s Wish You Were Here 2021 unconference will have an opportunity to talk with attorneys and learn more about the filing window. If you are not yet a member, please consider joining today.

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