Here’s an update on my recent story about AM station KVSL in Show Low AZ who made an Experimental Authority application for it’s 100.5 FM translator K263CA, along with an STA application for it’s “primary” AM 1470 kHz facility. The FCC has denied the request to shut down the AM facility for a year while operating the FM translator as the “primary” source of programming & signal. The intention is to examine the results of an experiment to permanently flip an AM license to the FM band, which could set a precedent. The Feds have made it clear that it has NO intention of allowing AM operators to shut down & operate their FM translators as their primary stations. Here’s the FCC reply to applicant Casa Pinon:
Casa’s request fails to explain how this experiment will aid in the development of new technology, equipment, systems or services. Furthermore, Casa fails to explain why the information it intends to collect about listeners and sponsors cannot be obtained while it continues to operate KVSL(AM). Absent additional empirical or theoretical evidence warranting testing, Casa has not sufficiently justified the grant of experimental authority.
We also find the request to be facially inconsistent with our FM translator rules. More significantly, the request is completely at odds with the intended goals of the Commission’s ongoing AM Revitalization proceeding. Throughout the AM Revitalization proceeding, the Commission has consistently pursued proposed rule changes and other procedures with the goal of enabling AM stations to improve their service and to provide better service to the public. The Commission has not contemplated allowing AM stations to surrender their AM licenses and use only their translators, as Casa suggests.