April 12, 1999
Contact: Christopher Maxwell 804-649-9737
Up to 58 new radio stations thanks to a Richmond Virginia City
Richmond City Council voted unanimously in favor of resolution (99-r78)
support of increased diversity of ownership of radio stations in Richmond.
This could enable Radio Free Richmond to come onto the air by the end
The Federal Communication Commission has recently proposed to open new
legal frequencies and restrict their ownership to new and local groups and
people. This proposed new set of rules is referred to as the Low Power
Radio Service (LPRS) and would enable anywhere from 3 to 58 new legal
community, church or small business radio stations to serve Richmonders
ignored by current radio stations.
Christopher Maxwell, organizer of the Radio Free Richmond Project said,
stable society is an inclusive and just society. The LPRS, is designed to
encourage a diversity of cultures represented on the airwaves by
encouraging a diversity of ownership/control. The theory is that a
diversity of people and organizations with different values and priorities
will create a more inclusive media (and therefore government policy)
because they will have different definitions of what is "newsworthy" and
"viable" for sharing on the public's airwaves. " Media provides that vital
feedback loop between those who make government policy and those who
suffer the consequences. Our Democratic Republic depends on a careful
balance of power and an effective "free press" that is neither onerously
influenced by government or overly centralized private influence.
Maxwell went on, "Radio Free Richmond can serve those of us whose idea
"public radio" extends beyond classical music, but are ignored by the
existing religious and commercial radio stations. This way WCVE public
radio can become a full-time-fine-arts stations, and we will handle the
news, World Beat, Jazz and Blues they would rather not use."
The LPRS is vital to legally bringing a renaissance of multicultural
programming to Richmond that current broadcasters are not interested in
because all the reasonably priced frequencies are taken by large
ENCLOSED: Richmond Virginia Resolution. 306 Words
A Resolution No. 99-R78
Introduced March 22 1999
Urging the Federal Communication Commission (FCC) to restore approval
low power FM radio broadcasting.
Patron -- Mayor Kaine
Approved as to form and legality by the City Attorney
Public Hearing April 12 1999 at 6pm.
WHEREAS, in 1978, the Federal Communication Commission (F.C.C.) ended
licensing of low power radio stations (Class D broadcasting licenses to
stations of less than 100 Watts), reducing overall the number of
locally-based radio stations in service to local communities. Since that
rule change, other factors such as increased consolidation within the
radio broadcast market have contributed to a significant reduction in the
number of community responsive radio services; and
WHEREAS, nationally, a grassroots movement has emerged for the purpose
advocating F.C.C. reinstatement of licensing of low power radio stations.
Their efforts have resulted in a formal rule-making petition before the
F.C.C, RM-9242, that would create opportunities for the return of locally
owned and responsive FM radio stations for communities; and
WHEREAS, re-legalization of low power radio stations would serve to
increase local media presence and ownership, promote small business
development and broadcast entrpreneurship, increase community choice and
allow for communication services that are responsive to the needs of local
BE IT RESOLVED BY THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RICHMOND:
The Richmond City Council urges the Federal Communications Commission to
restore approval for low power FM radio broadcasting.
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