TAB advances DC agendaposted on 2.24.2015
- Major policy rewrites on tap
As Congress prepares to consider wide-ranging updates to the federal telecommunications and copyright laws, as well as the tax code, TAB is working with the Texas delegation to ensure they understand the impact of some potential proposals on their local communities and broadcasters.
Despite just recently concluding a contentious five-year renewal of satellite TV legislation, pay-TV providers continue to push for dismantling the retransmission consent system. This and other key federal provisions such as syndication exclusivity and the pay-TV basic tier ensure Texas communities have access to local news, emergency information and top-caliber national programming free, over-the-air and in full HD. All could be changed in a potential rewrite of the 1996 Telecommunications Act.
A wide-ranging slate of music copyright issues – from the continuing push by record labels to enact a Performance Tax to demands involving performance rights organizations and pre-72 sound recordings – also is under consideration, with potentially significant – even devastating – ramifications for local broadcasters.
Businesses dependent on advertising and ad-supported media also are at risk under a preliminary proposal unveiled in 2014 for reforming the tax code which would cut in half the deductibility of advertising costs incurred in a year; the balance would be amortized over the ensuing five years. This provision is advanced by multi-national corporations fixated on lowering their nominal corporate tax rate, to the detriment of local businesses that advertise only in the U.S.
All these issues are the focus of meetings this week in DC arranged by TAB while the NAB holds its annual State Leadership Conference. All broadcasters are encouraged to address these issues in the coming weeks as lawmakers visit their districts on the weekend and during regular breaks.
Questions? Contact TAB’s Oscar Rodriguez or call (512) 322-9944.
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