[Federal Register: December 30, 1999 (Volume 64, Number 250)]
[Rules and Regulations]               
[Page 73429-73434]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



47 CFR Part 73

[CS Docket No. 98-201; FCC 99-278]

Satellite Delivery of Network Signals to Unserved Households for 
Purposes of the Satellite Home Viewer Act

AGENCY: Federal Communications Commission.

ACTION: Final rule.


SUMMARY: This document revises the rule applicable to the antenna and 
equipment testing procedure of the collection of field strength data to 
determine television broadcast signal intensity at individual 
locations. The action was taken in response to petitions filed by 
DIRECTV and EchoStar in connection with the Satellite Home Viewer Act. 
This action is intended to allow for flexibility in testing and reduced 
cost to the public.

DATES: Effective December 30, 1999.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jay Heimbach at (202) 418-7200 or via 
Internet at jheimbac@fcc.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This is a synopsis of the Commission's Order 
on Reconsideration, FCC 99-278, CS Docket No. 98-201, adopted October 
5, 1999 and released October 7, 1999. The full text of this Notice is 
available for inspection and copying during normal business hours in 
the FCC Reference Center, 445 12th Street, SW, Washington, DC 20554, or 
may be purchased from the Commission's copy contractor, International 
Transcription Service (``ITS''), (202) 857-3800, 1231 20th Street, NW, 
Washington, DC 20036, or may be reviewed via internet at www.fcc.gov/
csb. For copies in alternative formats, such as Braille, audio cassette 
or large print, please contact Sheila Ray at ITS.
    Paperwork Reduction Act: The requirements adopted in this Order on 
Reconsideration have been analyzed with respect to the Paperwork 
Reduction Act of 1995 (the ``1995 Act'') and found to impose no new or 
modified information collection requirements on the public.

Synopsis of Report and Order

Introductory Background

    1. In this proceeding, we address an issue involving petitions 
filed by two satellite carriers, DIRECTV and EchoStar, for 
reconsideration of the Commission's February 1, 1999 Report and Order 
concerning the 1988 Satellite Home Viewer Act (``SHVA'') (47 CFR 73). 
That Order addressed an issue involving the television broadcast 
industry, the direct-to-home satellite industry, and consumers who 
subscribe to satellite services for their broadcast network television 
    2. Broadly stated, the issue is whether and where home satellite 
carriers may retransmit television broadcast network signals under the 
SHVA. Federal copyright law, which the SHVA is a part of, contains a 
copyright compulsory license authorizing the carriage of certain 
network broadcast signals by home satellite carriers. (17 U.S.C. 
119(a)(2)(A) The compulsory license is limited, however, because it 
does not permit satellite carriers to retransmit a particular network's 
signal to a subscriber unless the subscriber is ``unserved'' by the 
local affiliate of the network. (17 U.S.C. 119(a)(2)(B)) ``Unserved'' 
is defined in the SHVA as a household that cannot receive an adequate 
television signal (defined as a signal of ``Grade B'' intensity) using 
a conventional outdoor rooftop antenna. The Grade B values (which 
represent the required field strength in dB above one micro-volt per 
meter) are defined for each over-the-air television channel in the 
Commission's rules. (47 CFR 683) There are also Grade A and ``city 
grade'' field strength values, which represent stronger signals.

                               [In dBu's]
                                               Grade B  Grade A   grade
Channels 2-6.................................       47       68       74
Channels 7-13................................       56       71       77
Channels 14-69...............................       64       74       80

    Several judicial proceedings involving the SHVA have resulted in 
findings that some satellite carriers have violated that statute and 
have highlighted the significant disputes between broadcast networks 
and satellite carriers over which consumers are eligible to receive 
satellite-delivered network programming.
    3. The SHVA Report and Order sought to help the consumers caught in 
these disputes by refining two tools to more accurately determine 
whether a household is truly unserved. The first tool is an on-site (or 
at-home) signal measurement test to determine the strength of a 
television signal at a consumer's household. The second tool is a 
computer-generated prediction model that might obviate the need for 
large numbers of on-site tests and that could be used by consumers when 
first signing up for satellite service (at the

[[Page 73430]]

``point of sale''). This Individual Location Longley-Rice (``ILLR'') 
model is a variation of the core Longley-Rice model that the Commission 
has long used to determine signal propagation. The ILLR is specifically 
designed to predict the strength of a television signal at an 
individual location, such as a consumer's home, by considering what 
happens to the signal as it travels from the transmitter to the home. 
The model accounts for the effects that signal interference and terrain 
have on signal strength. We concluded that other factors, specifically 
vegetation and buildings, can also affect the strength of television 
signals received at a home. However, the rulemaking record did not 
contain information sufficient for us to identify, endorse, or develop 
a way to apply these land use and land cover (``LULC'') factors in an 
application that would be ``accepted by the technical and scientific 
community.'' We noted that LULC data are available from the United 
States Geological Survey (``USGS'') and asked interested parties to 
develop an application for incorporating that data into the ILLR.
    4. DIRECTV and EchoStar separately petitioned the Commission to 
reconsider parts of the Order regarding the eligibility of satellite 
subscribers to receive broadcast network signals through home satellite 
dishes. The National Association of Broadcasters (``NAB''), Entravision 
Holdings, and affiliates of ABC, NBC, CBS, and Fox (the ``Affiliates'') 
opposed the petitions. The National Rural Telecommunications 
Cooperative (``NRTC'') expressed its support for the petitions.
    5. The Communications Act and our own rules govern our response to 
the petitions. (47 CFR 1.429) Reconsideration of a Commission decision 
is warranted only if the petitioner cites a material error of fact or 
law or presents additional facts and circumstances which raise 
substantial or material questions of fact that were not considered and 
that otherwise warrant Commission review of its prior action. The 
Commission will not reconsider arguments that have already been 
considered. For the reasons stated herein, the Order on Reconsideration 
affirms the decisions in the SHVA Report and Order and denies DIRECTV's 
Petition. The Order denies in part and grants in part EchoStar's 

The Petitions for Reconsideration

DIRECTV's Petition

    6. DIRECTV's Petition asks the Commission to allow satellite 
carriers to include the effects of land use and land cover in the ILLR 
prediction model now. The Petition contends that there are ``a variety 
of scientifically accepted means'' of including USGS data into the 
model using commercially available mapping software and emphasizes that 
DIRECTV itself is developing software. However, DIRECTV did not 
identify these means in any detail. In an accompanying statement, 
DIRECTV's expert states that the military targets cruise missiles using 
``a comparison of data available through the Global Positioning System 
(`GPS') and USGS LULC data,'' but does not specifically identify the 
procedure used by the military, nor does it identify any other 
procedure or software application. DIRECTV's Reply offers some 
information on the specific LULC application it supports, but still 
does not offer the application itself. According to DIRECTV, their 
engineering consultants are actively in the process of developing an 
LULC loss algorithm implementation that can be ``readily achieved using 
the USGS database.''
    7. Broadcasting interests, led by the NAB and the Affiliates, 
opposed the Petition and argued that DIRECTV is trying unilaterally to 
create and use an LULC application in direct contravention of the 
Commission's Order. ABC, CBS, and Fox affiliates go one step further by 
stating that overlaying LULC data in the ILLR would amount to ``double-
counting'' the effects of trees and buildings. They contend that the 
core Longley-Rice programming language (on which the ILLR is based) 
already incorporates some LULC data into its calculations. The 
Affiliates also questioned using the USGS database, asserting that it 
covers too much land per grid area (200 meters) to be accurate for the 
purposes here involved. Both the NAB and the Affiliates emphasized that 
DIRECTV has not offered a specific software package for applying LULC 
data to the predictive model. When it does, the NAB asserts that it 
would support an expedited review by the Commission. On the other hand, 
the NRTC supported DIRECTV's Petition and asked the Commission for 
``practical rules and recommendations * * * to use in determining a 
household's eligibility to receive distant network signals by 
    8. The Commission believes that consumers will benefit when the 
effects of trees and buildings on a television signal are included in 
the ILLR prediction model. We stated in the SHVA Report and Order:

    While we expect the model to include land use and land cover, we 
are not aware of a standard means of including such information in 
the ILLR that has been accepted by the technical and scientific 
community. When an appropriate application has been developed and 
accepted, this information will be included in the ILLR.

    The Commission specifically invited interested parties to develop 
such an application. Before such an application can be used, however, 
it is necessary that some consensus be developed as to the specifics of 
the technique involved so that the process is generally understood, the 
results can be replicated by all who would use the process, and any 
disputes as to accuracy of the technique can be addressed. Neither 
DIRECTV, nor any other party, may unilaterally incorporate LULC data 
into the Commission's ILLR until an application has been publicly 
reviewed. The Commission again encourages any interested party to 
develop an application and offer it for comment. Because DIRECTV has 
not fully offered the details of its application, such review is not 
possible here. The Order on Reconsideration therefore denies DIRECTV's 
Petition for Reconsideration.

EchoStar's Petition

    9. EchoStar, in its Petition, first argued that the Commission 
could have and should have adopted a new definition of Grade B 
intensity specifically for SHVA purposes. The Petition, however, does 
not propose a new definition or standard. Second, EchoStar argued that 
the Commission should consider the effects of ``ghosting'' in a 
television picture, caused by signal ``multipathing,'' when determining 
who is unserved. Third, EchoStar took issue with several elements of 
the Commission's new on-site testing methodology, including (a) whether 
measurements should be taken at a house's roof or at the television 
set, (b) the orientation of the testing antenna, (c) the type of 
testing antenna that should be used, and (d) the number and location of 
the tests. Finally, EchoStar asked the Commission to raise the 
confidence factor in the predictive model from 50% to 90%, arguing that 
the latter is more consumer-friendly and, therefore, consistent with 
the SHVA's purposes.
    10. The Order concludes that the record provided an inadequate 
basis for changing the Grade B signal intensity values either generally 
or for purposes of the SHVA specifically, and therefore, declined to 
change the definition of Grade B signal intensity. EchoStar disagreed 
with these conclusions, but

[[Page 73431]]

presented no new arguments or facts that warrant revisiting this issue. 
The Commission stands by the conclusions in the SHVA Report and Order 
and denies EchoStar's petition on this issue.
    11. EchoStar contends that the Order did not specifically take 
account of the effects of multipathing and asks the Commission to do so 
now. Multipathing is the reflection of a single television signal off 
of buildings or other objects. It causes several transmissions of the 
same signal to arrive at a television at slightly different times, 
leading to ``ghosting'' on the screen (one fainter ``ghost'' picture 
superimposed on the main picture). Importantly, multipathing can affect 
picture quality on a consumer's television set even when a Grade B 
signal exists at the consumer's rooftop. EchoStar asked the Commission 
to institute proceedings to account for the effects of multipathing. 
The NRTC supported EchoStar's position, arguing that ``consumers want 
and deserve the best quality television picture available, and if 
ghosting or other environmental factors degrade picture quality * * * 
the Commission should recognize and incorporate these factors in the 
predictive model and testing methodology.'' The NAB and the Affiliates 
rejected the satellite carriers' position, noting that the SHVA speaks 
of Grade B intensity, an objective standard for determining who is 
unserved, rather than a subjective picture quality standard that would 
be very difficult to enforce and implement. Therefore, the broadcasters 
claimed that the Commission ``unquestionably lacks authority to alter 
the SHVA eligibility standard to deal with ghosting.'' EchoStar replied 
that ghosting is not so subjective that it is impossible to determine: 
``Ghosting either exists or it does not, it is objectively 
    12. The Order addressed multipathing in several places and, as with 
the Grade B definition issue, EchoStar has not offered any additional 
facts or new arguments that warrant a change in our conclusions. We 
recognize that ghosting is a problem that affects television pictures 
but note, as we did in the Order, that there is no simple solution. For 
example, raising the Grade B values to give a consumer a stronger 
television signal could actually exacerbate the problem of 
multipathing. As the signal strength increases, ``noise'' or ``snow'' 
in a television picture may be reduced, but the chance of ghosting 
increases. Moreover, the multipath ``interference'' created by the same 
signal is very difficult to measure objectively.
    13. While the Commission welcomes concrete solutions to the 
ghosting problem, any solution must be objective and verifiable. 
EchoStar has not offered any new facts or arguments that describe how 
to predict or measure multipathing or even permit it to be taken into 
account under the current language in the SHVA. The Order on 
Reconsideration therefore denies Echostar's petition on this issue.
    14. EchoStar believes the Commission's on-site measurement test is 
too complicated and costs too much (estimates are $99 to $119 per on-
site test for four networks). In its comments to the petition, the NRTC 
agreed. EchoStar also suggested that the SHVA does not require signal 
measurements at a house's rooftop and that any such conclusion is 
merely ``a legal fallacy, propagated by the broadcasters.'' Instead, 
EchoStar argued that signal strength should be measured at the 
television set. Alternatively, EchoStar suggested changing several 
requirements mandated for the outdoor, on-site tests: (1) Eliminate the 
requirement that the testing antenna be oriented separately for each 
station being measured; (2) require fewer testing locations and 
measurements (for each station, replace 1 test at 5 locations with 3 
tests at 1 location); (3) allow parties to choose the type of testing 
antenna, either a half-wave dipole (as the SHVA Report and Order 
required) or gain antenna; (4) clarify that the half-wave dipole 
required for testing in the Order can be of fixed length. The NAB 
rejected EchoStar's suggestions, except that it does admit that a 
properly calibrated gain antenna could be used to conduct signal 
intensity measurements. In a ``Revised Engineering Statement,'' 
however, the NAB added that a simple gain antenna is not sufficient and 
recommends that the Commission specify and endorse particular brands 
and models of antenna. Specifically, NAB's engineering expert, Jules 
Cohen, recommended that ``antennas with a relatively large number of 
elements are more likely to have a more consistent input impedance than 
the simpler types.'' He further notes that the Channel Master Model 
3016 is such an antenna and added that similar antennas would be 
suitable ``if channel-by-channel gain figures are provided and 
certified by the manufacturer together with the antenna's input 
impedance characteristics.'' The Affiliates stated that EchoStar's 
suggestions, as a group, would reduce accuracy with very little cost 
savings and asserted that the Commission gave full and detailed 
attention to the creation of the new measurement methodology. In its 
Reply, EchoStar countered that any additional inaccuracies created by a 
less complex test would fall equally on broadcasters and satellite 
    15. When the Commission created the on-site test in the SHVA Report 
and Order, it was faced with balancing the cost of the test with the 
accuracy and objectivity that would result. In the end, the Order 
thoroughly considered and discussed many different issues. The Order on 
Reconsideration reiterates the Commission's intent that the test should 
be relatively inexpensive, simple enough so that an average antenna 
installer can conduct it, and objective enough so that the test results 
will not constantly fall in doubt. EchoStar offered neither new 
evidence nor new arguments with respect to orientation of the test 
antenna and the number of test measurements. EchoStar provided new 
information in its request that the rules permit testers to use either 
a half-wave dipole or an antenna with gain to conduct the tests. In the 
rulemaking, broadcasters also supported the use of a gain antenna, 
albeit with the recent qualification that the test antenna should have 
multiple elements to ensure proper calibration. Because a gain antenna 
is able to accurately measure the intensity of a television signal and 
because it will provide additional flexibility for technicians who 
conduct tests, we amend the testing rule to allow the use of either a 
gain antenna with several elements or the half-wave dipole that we 
originally endorsed. In response to the concerns raised by the NAB, the 
revised rule maintains an impedance match at the antenna at all 
frequencies. We believe this approach is preferable to endorsing a 
particular brand or model or requiring use of an expensive test 
antenna. In addition, we will amend the rule to allow use of signal 
level test instruments with a bandwidth of 200 kHz through one 
megahertz (1,000 kHz), rather than requiring a bandwidth of at least 
450 kHz. (47 CFR 73.686(d)(2)(i)) We believe that this amendment will 
reduce the cost of the tests by permitting technicians to use test 
equipment they have on hand and not require them to purchase new 
    16. EchoStar asked the Commission to revisit the confidence factor 
used in the ILLR prediction methodology, an issue that the SHVA Report 
and Order addressed more exhaustively than any other in the proceeding. 
EchoStar contended that the Commission's decision to set the ILLR's 
confidence factor at 50% ``penalizes the consumer and errs in favor of 
some policy of `belt-and-suspenders'' over-protection for the 
broadcaster's local franchise.'' Instead, the satellite carrier 
asserted that the

[[Page 73432]]

Commission should set the confidence factor at 90% because consumers' 
rights to a good television picture, not broadcasters' copyrights, must 
be ``the cornerstone of a predictive model.'' To prevent alleged 
``overprediction'' of unserved households, EchoStar proposes a ``cap'' 
that would cut off eligibility for distant network satellite service if 
a household cannot be predicted (with 90% confidence) to receive 70.75 
dBu or less. EchoStar essentially suggested a floor and ceiling for 
determining whether a household is unserved--the household should 
receive (a) at least a signal of 47 dBu with 90% confidence, and (b) 
less than a signal of 70.75 dBu with 90% confidence.
    17. The Order on Reconsideration declines EchoStar's request to 
revisit the confidence factor issue. The SHVA Report and Order 
thoroughly considered and addressed the issues surrounding the 
confidence factor and EchoStar has offered no new arguments or facts 
that warrant a change in our conclusions. Its suggestion that we adopt 
a floor-and-ceiling approach to determining unserved households is 
legally untenable. EchoStar's suggested ceiling of 70.75 dBu would 
change the SHVA's definition of unserved household, which is defined 
only as a household that does not receive a signal of at least Grade B 
intensity, not as a household that also receives less than a signal of 
some other level. (17 U.S.C. 119(d)(10))
    18. In any action brought under the SHVA, the burden of proof lies 
with the satellite carriers to demonstrate that a particular household 
is unserved. (17 U.S.C. 119(d)(5)(D)) To be useful in carrying this 
burden, any prediction system must demonstrate with a sufficient degree 
of confidence to be acceptable in a judicial proceeding which 
households are unserved. Conversely, it is not sufficient to 
demonstrate with confidence which households are served. Because of the 
statistical factors underlying the prediction system, which have not 
changed since the SHVA Report and Order, there is a considerable 
difference between demonstrating with confidence which households are 
served and which are unserved. EchoStar's suggestions did not advance 
the goal of more accurately identifying unserved households and its 
Petition with respect to the confidence factor must be denied.

Supplemental Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis


    19. As required by the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), (5 U.S.C. 
603) an Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis (``IRFA'') was 
incorporated into the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in this proceeding. 
(CS Docket No. 98-201, FCC 98-302, 63 FR 67439 (December 7, 1998)) The 
Commission sought written public comment on the expected impact of the 
proposed policies and rules on small entities in the Notice, including 
comments on the IRFA. The Commission included a Final Regulatory 
Flexibility Analysis (``FRFA'') into the SHVA Report and Order. While 
no petitioners seeking reconsideration of the Order raised issues 
directly related to the FRFA, the Commission is amending the rules in a 
manner that may affect small entities, although only in a minor way. 
Accordingly, this Supplemental Regulatory Flexibility Analysis 
(``Supplemental FRFA'') addresses those amendments and conforms to the 

Need for and Objective of the Rules

    20. In both the SHVA Report and Order and this Order on 
Reconsideration, the Commission has addressed methods for determining 
whether a household is ``unserved'' by network television stations for 
purposes of the 1988 Satellite Home Viewer Act. (17 U.S.C. 119) Our 
goal was to provide relatively simple and inexpensive prediction and 
testing methodologies to determine the intensity of a television signal 
at a consumer's household. The changes to the on-site test outlined in 
the current Order on Reconsideration clarify and simplify the rule and 
its implementation and, therefore, serve our objectives.

Legal Basis

    21. This Order on Reconsideration is authorized under Sections 1, 
4(i), 4(j) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. 
151, 154(i), and 154(j) and Section 119(d)(10)(a) of the Copyright Act, 
17 U.S.C. 119(d)(10)(a).

Summary of Significant Issues Regarding FRFA Raised in Petitions for 

    22. No parties address the FRFA in their petitions for 
reconsideration, or any subsequent filings. The Commission has, 
however, addressed, on it's own motion, steps taken to further minimize 
the effect of these requirements on small entities.

Description and Estimate of the Number of Small Entities to Which the 
Rules Will Apply

    23. The RFA directs the Commission to provide a description of and, 
where feasible, an estimate of the number of small entities that will 
be affected by the proposed action. (5 U.S.C. 604(a)(3)) The RFA 
defines the term ``small entity'' as having the same meaning as the 
terms ``small business,'' ``small organization,'' and ``small business 
concern'' under Section 3 of the Small Business Act. (5 U.S.C. 
604(a)(3)) Under the Small Business Act, a small business concern is 
one which: (1) Is independently owned and operated; (2) Is not dominant 
in its field of operation; and (3) Satisfies any additional criteria 
established by the SBA. (15 U.S.C. 632) The action taken in this Order 
will affect television broadcasting licensees and DTH satellite 
    24. The rule developed in the SHVA Report and Order and 
reconsidered in this Order on Reconsideration will apply to television 
broadcasting licensees, and potential licensees of television service. 
The SBA defines a television broadcasting station that has no more than 
$10.5 million in annual receipts as a small business. (13 CFR 121.201, 
Standard Industrial Code (``SIC'') 4833 (1996)) Television broadcasting 
stations consist of establishments primarily engaged in broadcasting 
visual programs by television to the public, except cable and other pay 
television services. Included in this industry are commercial, 
religious, educational, and other television stations. Also included 
are establishments primarily engaged in television broadcasting and 
that produce taped television program materials. Separate 
establishments primarily engaged in producing taped television program 
materials are classified under another SIC number. There were 1,509 
television broadcasting stations operating in the nation in 1992. That 
number has remained fairly constant as indicated by the approximately 
1,579 operating full power television broadcasting stations in the 
nation as of May 31, 1998. In addition, as of October 31, 1997, there 
were 1,880 low power television broadcasting (``LPTV'') broadcasting 
stations that may also be affected by our proposed rule changes. For 
1992 the number of television broadcasting stations that produced less 
than $10.0 million in revenue was 1,155 establishments. The amount of 
$10 million was used to estimate the number of small business 
establishments because the relevant Census categories stopped at 
$9,999,999 and began at $10,000,000. No category for $10.5 million 
existed. Thus, the number is as accurate as it is possible to calculate 
with the available information.
    25. The Commission has not developed a definition of small entities

[[Page 73433]]

applicable to geostationary or non-geostationary orbit fixed-satellite 
or DBS service applicants or licensees. Therefore, the applicable 
definition of small entity is the definition under the SBA rules 
applicable to Communications Services, Not Elsewhere Classified. This 
definition provides that a small entity is one with $11.0 million or 
less in annual receipts. (13 CFR 121.201, SIC Code 4899) The number of 
employees working for a ``small entity'' must be 750 or fewer. 
According to Census Bureau data, there are 848 firms that fall under 
the category of Communications Services, Not Elsewhere Classified that 
could potentially fall into the DTH category. Of those, approximately 
775 reported annual receipts of $11 million or less and qualify as 
small entities. The action in the SHVA Report and Order and 
reconsidered in this Order on Reconsideration applies to entities 
providing DTH service, including licensees of DBS services and 
distributors of satellite programming. There are four licensees of DBS 
services under Part 100 of the Commission's rules. (47 CFR 100 et seq.) 
Three of those licensees are currently operational, and each of those 
licensees has annual revenues in excess of the threshold for a small 

Description of Projected Reporting, Recordkeeping, and Other Compliance 

    26. The Commission did not prescribe reporting requirements in the 
original Order and do not do so in this Order on Reconsideration. As 
noted in the Order, parties who choose to conduct individual household 
measurements are required to memorialize their test observations and 

Steps Taken To Minimize Significant Economic Impact On Small Entities 
and Significant Alternatives Considered

    27. In formulating the testing rule in the Order, the Commission 
sought to minimize the effect on small entities while ensuring accurate 
determinations of signal intensity at individual locations such as 
households. These efforts are consistent with the Congress' goal of 
ensuring that ``unserved'' consumers are able to receive network 
broadcast signals through a home satellite dish. The actions the 
Commission is taking on reconsideration further refine the rule so as 
to advance this goal and further minimize unnecessary burdens on small 
    28. Specifically, the Order only allows the use of one type of 
testing antenna. Here, on reconsideration, the Commission has increased 
test-takers' flexibility by allowing the use of a second type of 
antenna. Additionally, the Commission has amended it's rule to allow 
use of signal level test instruments with a bandwidth of 200 kHz 
through one megahertz (1,000 kHz), rather than requiring a bandwidth of 
at least 450 kHz, because the Commission wishes to reduce the cost of 
the test by permitting technicians to use test equipment they have on 
hand and not require them to purchase new equipment.

Report to Congress

    29. The Commission will send a copy of the Order on 
Reconsideration, including this Supplemental FRFA, in a report to be 
sent to Congress pursuant to the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement 
Fairness Act of 1996. (5 U.S.C. 801(a)(1)(A)) In addition, the 
Commission will send a copy of the Order on Reconsideration, including 
Supplemental FRFA, to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small 
Business Administration. A copy of the Order on Reconsideration and 
Supplemental FRFA (or summaries thereof) will also be published in the 
Federal Register. (5 U.S.C. 604(b))

Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 Analysis

    30. This Order on Reconsideration has been analyzed with respect to 
the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 and has been found to contain no 
new or modified information collection requirements on the public.

Ordering Clauses

    31. Pursuant to Section 405(a) of the Communications Act of 1934, 
47 U.S.C. 405(a), and Section 1.429 of the Commission's rules, 47 CFR 
1.429, DIRECTV's Petition for Reconsideration is denied.
    32. Pursuant to Section 405(a) of the Communications Act of 1934, 
47 U.S.C. 405(a), and Section 1.429 of the Commission's rules, 47 CFR 
1.429, EchoStar's Petition for Reconsideration is granted in part and 
denied in part.
    33. The NAB Motion for Leave to File Corrected Engineering 
Statement is granted.
    34. Under authority of Sections 1, 4(i), 4(j) of the Communications 
Act of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. 151, 154(i), and 154(j), part 73 of 
Title 47 of the Code of Federal Regulations is amended as indicated in 
the Appendix.
    35. The Commission's Office of Media Affairs, Reference Operations 
Division, shall send a copy of this Order on Reconsideration, including 
the Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis, to the Chief Counsel for 
Advocacy of the Small Business Administration in accordance with 
paragraph 603(a) of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, Pub. L. 96-354, 94 
Stat. 1164, 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq. (1981).

List of Subjects in 47 CFR Part 73

    Communications equipment, Television.

Federal Communications Commission.
William F. Caton,
Deputy Secretary.

Rule Changes

    For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Federal 
Communications Commission amends 47 CFR part 73 as follows:


    1. The authority citation for Part 73 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 47 U.S.C. 154, 303, 334 and 336.

Subpart E--Television Broadcast Stations

    2. Section 73.686(d) is revised to read as follows:

Sec. 73.686  Field strength measurements.

* * * * *
    (d) Collection of field strength data to determine television 
signal intensity at an individual location--cluster measurements.
    (1) Preparation for measurements--(i) Testing antenna. The test 
antenna shall be either a standard half-wave dipole tuned to the visual 
carrier frequency of the channel being measured or a gain antenna, 
provided its antenna factor for the channel(s) under test has been 
determined. Use the antenna factor supplied by the antenna manufacturer 
as determined on an antenna range.
    (ii) Testing locations. At the location, choose a minimum of five 
locations as close as possible to the specific site where the site's 
receiving antenna is located. If there is no receiving antenna at the 
site, choose the minimum of five locations as close as possible to a 
reasonable and likely spot for the antenna. The locations shall be at 
least three meters apart, enough so that the testing is practical. If 
possible, the first testing point should be chosen as the center point 
of a square whose corners are the four other locations. Calculate the 
median of the five measurements (in units of dBu) and report it as the 
measurement result.
    (iii) Multiple signals. If more than one signal is being measured 
(i.e., signals from different transmitters), use the same locations to 
measure each signal.

[[Page 73434]]

    (2) Measurement procedure. Measurements shall be made in accordance 
with good engineering practice and in accordance with this section of 
the Rules. At each measuring location, the following procedure shall be 
    (i) Testing equipment. Measure the field strength of the visual 
carrier with a calibrated instrument with an i.f. bandwidth of at least 
200 kHz, but no greater than one megahertz (1,000 kHz). Perform an on-
site calibration of the instrument in accordance with the 
manufacturer's specifications. The instrument must accurately indicate 
the peak amplitude of the synchronizing signal. Take all measurements 
with a horizontally polarized antenna. Use a shielded transmission line 
between the testing antenna and the field strength meter. Match the 
antenna impedance to the transmission line at all frequencies measured, 
and, if using an unbalanced line, employ a suitable balun. Take account 
of the transmission line loss for each frequency being measured.
    (ii) Weather. Do not take measurements in inclement weather or when 
major weather fronts are moving through the measurement area.
    (iii) Antenna elevation. When field strength is being measured for 
a one-story building, elevate the testing antenna to 6.1 meters (20 
feet) above the ground. In situations where the field strength is being 
measured for a building taller than one-story, elevate the testing 
antenna 9.1 meters (30 feet) above the ground.
    (iv) Antenna orientation. Orient the testing antenna in the 
direction which maximizes the value of field strength for the signal 
being measured. If more than one station's signal is being measured, 
orient the testing antenna separately for each station.
    (3) Written record shall be made and shall include at least the 
    (i) A list of calibrated equipment used in the field strength 
survey, which for each instrument, specifies the manufacturer, type, 
serial number and rated accuracy, and the date of the most recent 
calibration by the manufacturer or by a laboratory. Include complete 
details of any instrument not of standard manufacture.
    (ii) A detailed description of the calibration of the measuring 
equipment, including field strength meters, measuring antenna, and 
connecting cable.
    (iii) For each spot at the measuring site, all factors which may 
affect the recorded field, such as topography, height and types of 
vegetation, buildings, obstacles, weather, and other local features.
    (iv) A description of where the cluster measurements were made.
    (v) Time and date of the measurements and signature of the person 
making the measurements.
    (vi) For each channel being measured, a list of the measured value 
of field strength (in units of dBu and after adjustment for line loss 
and antenna factor) of the five readings made during the cluster 
measurement process, with the median value highlighted.

[FR Doc. 99-33765 Filed 12-29-99; 8:45 am]