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Early signs Texas' influence in Congress growing|
-House committee issues new white paper on Telcom Act rewrite
Oscar Rodriguez, TAB President
Texas' clout in Congress is growing as word leaks out on new committee assignments set to take effect when the new session begins in January. The full slate of committees won't be finalized until next month, but so far, the Lone Star State has garnered three plum committee chairmanships and is beefing up its presence on the two committees of greatest interest to broadcasters — Judiciary and Energy & Commerce.
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TPIA expert Larsen says potential adverse AG ruling could cripple Texas' Open Records law
The University of Texas refused to release the contract and purchase price for the archive of Colombian novelist and Nobel laureate Gabriel Garcia Marquez, and said it will ask the state attorney general for permission to keep those details secret.
FOIA reform bill dies after House fails to schedule vote
Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press
A bipartisan FOIA reform bill failed to be put to a vote in the House recently after it was unanimously approved by the Senate. The inaction spelled death for the FOIA Improvement Act of 2014, as House members are scheduled to leave town and have not scheduled a vote on the measure.
One of the more frustrating aspects of the incident is that the House unanimously passed an even broader FOIA reform bill in February, leaving open government advocates wondering about the reasons for the House's inaction.
NPPA hires lobbyists to work FAA over drone regulations
The National Press Photographers Association has brought on a lobbying firm to weigh in on upcoming regulations over the use of drones.
The photojournalist group has obtained the services of two former House staffers working at the Holland & Knight law firm to lobby on the flying machines, technically known as unmanned aerial systems, as the Federal Aviation Association prepares to issue new draft rules. The lobbyists will work pro bono, an official with the photojournalist group told The Hill.
Station develops newsroom drone use rules in advance of FAA approval of commercial use of drones
The Raleigh, North Carolina, CBS affiliate has adopted rigorous standards for drone deployment as it learns how to operate them in preparation for the day the FAA approves their use in newsgathering. The requirements include operator training on par with that needed to acquire a private pilot's license and following a set of operating rules designed to ensure safety and respect privacy.
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TAB's P1 Learning Service is now FREE to TAB Members
Good news! TAB's online training program — P1 Learning — is now FREE to TAB member stations!
The service offers hundreds of online, on-demand courses that will benefit every member of your station's staff. With everything from personalized curricula to study documents and exams, it's never been easier to put industry experts in front of your staff. Topics include:
- Sales: Entry-level and pro-level series
- Management: Leadership, supervision, communications
- On-air, human resources, administrative
- ... and much more.
TAB offers background briefing for newsrooms on upcoming 84th Texas Legislature
Michael Schneider, TAB Vice President, Legislative & Regulatory Affairs
The upcoming 84th Texas Legislature will provide Texas radio and TV stations with multiple opportunities for news coverage. Texas faces a number of daunting statewide and local issues that lawmakers will attempt to tackle in the regular and, potentially, special sessions. TAB wants to encourage more coverage of the Texas Legislature and has arranged a free webinar this Thursday, Dec. 18, to provide background, tools and insights into covering lawmakers and the issues at the Capitol.
Lawo, a TAB Gold Patron Associate Member, designs and manufactures pioneering audio and video technology for TV and radio broadcast production and post-production as well as live performance and theater applications. Products include digital audio mixing consoles, routers, video-processing tools as well as IP-based video and audio transport solutions.
Riedel, a TAB Bronze Associate Member, designs, manufactures and distributes the most sophisticated intercom, video, audio, fiber and radio technology for customers worldwide in the broadcast, pro-audio, event, sports and theater industries.
Texas' reporter privilege law shields RGV newspaper employees from depositions
Valley Morning Star
An Hidalgo County judge recently ruled that AIM Media Texas, parent company of the Valley Morning Star and The Monitor, will not have to release information to a lawyer exploring a lawsuit against the media company.
FAA may ease its system for reporting tower light outages
If you're responsible for a tower subject to lighting requirements imposed by the Federal Aviation Administration, your life may be getting a bit easier early next year. According to an advisory issued by the FCC's Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, the FAA is modifying its notification process to allow folks reporting lighting outages to specify, in their initial notices, the amount of time they expect to need to get the outage fixed.
FCC issues $46,000 fine for EAS tones in commercial; reviews system best practices
Broadcast Law Blog
Perhaps the recent Dec. 7 anniversary of Pearl Harbor made the FCC want to make the following week one which concentrated on emergency communications issues — or perhaps it is just a coincidence. But the FCC has been active the past seven days in dealing with emergency communications related items for broadcasters. Recently, it issued a consent decree by which a broadcaster agreed to a $46,000 fine for the use of EAS tones in a commercial message.
FCC announces new end date for JSA grandfathering
The FCC announced in March that it would begin treating TV Joint Sales Agreements between two local TV stations involving more than 15 percent of a station's advertising time as an attributable ownership interest. However, it also announced at that time that it would provide parties to existing JSAs two years from the effective date of the new rule to make any necessary modifications to ensure compliance with the FCC's multiple ownership rule. When the new rule went into effect, that made June 19, 2016, the deadline for addressing any issues with existing JSAs.
Genuine Country KICKS 99-1 morning team retire
"Mike and Dana," KICKS 99-1 Morning Show personalities and John Moesch, vice president/general manager of Brazos Communications West LLC, announced the planned retirement of "Mike and Dana" at the end of 2014. Their last on-air show will be Dec. 19.
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