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October 3, 2016 FCC EEO Deadlines

September 7, 2016

Special Note Regarding the FCC's Online Public File

As of June 24, 2016, commercial radio stations in the Top 50 Nielsen markets are required to upload all new material to the FCC’s online public inspection file, including the annual EEO Public File Report (PFR) discussed below. This Oct.3 deadline will be the first time that many radio stations place the PFR on the FCC-hosted site. For more information about the FCC’s online public inspection file, please click here.

Annual EEO Public File Report

Radio and television station employment units (SEUs) located in Alaska, Florida, Guam, Hawaii, Iowa, Missouri, Oregon, Puerto Rico, Samoa, the Virgin Islands, and Washington with five or more full-time employees must prepare by Monday, October 3, 2016 an annual EEO Public File Report (PFR). The report must be placed in the public inspection file and posted on the website belonging to each station in the SEU. (For full-power and Class A television stations as well as commercial radio stations in the Top 50 Nielsen markets, the PFR must be uploaded to the online public inspection file hosted by the FCC.)

The PFR should summarize the SEU's recruitment activity from October 1, 2015 through September 30, 2016, including full-time positions filled, the recruitment sources used to advertise those job openings, and the total number of interviewees and hires produced by each recruitment source. The PFR must also include a summary of the SEU's recruitment initiatives.

FCC Form 397 Broadcast Mid-Term Report

Licensees that have reached the mid-point of their eight-year license term must file a FCC Form 397 Broadcast Mid-Term Report for a substantive review of their recruitment activity. Television SEUs with five or more full-time employees in Florida, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands and radio SEUs with 11 or more full-time employees in Iowa and Missouri must file their Forms 397 on Monday, October 3, 2016. (Note: Television SEUs with four or fewer full-time employees and radio SEUs with 10 or fewer full-time employees and are not required to submit a Form 397.)

The Form 397 requires filers to identify the individual responsible for EEO matters and to submit the SEU’s two most recent PFRs as attachments. Those SEUs with an October 3, 2016 deadline must include PFRs covering October 1, 2014 – September 30, 2015 and October 1, 2015 – September 30, 2016. Once filed with the FCC, the Form 397 must be placed in the public inspection file of each station in the SEU. (For those full-power and Class A television stations as well as commercial radio stations in the Top 50 Nielsen markets with online public inspection files hosted by the FCC, the FCC automatically uploads the Form 397.)

If you have any questions about the Form 397 or FCC EEO compliance in general, please contact the Wiley Rein attorneys listed below.