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TAB Tools for 2020 Political Season

- Preliminary Webinar this Week!

The Texas political candidate filing period is now open and individuals who have said they are running for office in 2020 must now file the necessary paperwork and fees to garner a place on the ballot. The filing window closes Dec. 9. As candidates get their ducks in a row for the big dance, broadcasters must, too, and TAB is ready to help.

Our effort is multi-pronged – workshops, webinars, a political broadcasting legal guide covering federal and state rules alike, political forms, political date schedules, timely political news updates and the TAB legal hotline.

FCC Political Broadcasting Webinars

TAB is offering two webinars free to member stations to bring staff up to speed.

The first webinar takes place this Thursday, Nov. 21, at 2pm. TAB member stations can register for it here. Produced in cooperation with the Michigan Association of Broadcasters, the program features attorney David Oxenford of TAB Associate member law firm Wilkinson Barker Knauer and Bobby Baker, the head of the FCC’s political bureau.

The two-hour session will cover the basics of the FCC’s political broadcast rules.

TAB is producing a second webinar for Texas stations on Jan. 15 featuring TAB’s FCC legal counsel Scott Flick, just days ahead of the FCC’s March primary political window on Jan. 18.

Flick, a partner in the Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman law firm will spend 90 minutes reviewing the “Texas specific” provisions related to sponsorship identification in political advertising, as well as when and under what circumstances the FCC rules regarding political candidates apply; equal opportunities; the four news-related exceptions to the commission’s political rules; reasonable access; political advertising rates; sponsorship identification; recordkeeping and more.

TAB member stations can register for the January 2020 webinar here.

Save the Date – Jan. 11 TAB Newsroom Workshop on Political Issue Coverage

Newsrooms should mark their calendars now for a Saturday, Jan. 11, newsroom workshop on political issue coverage.

Al Tompkins of the Poynter Institute for Media Studies will conduct the all-day seminar which will take place at TAB’s Ann Arnold Center in Austin. Stay tuned for more details on this workshop!

TAB Political Calendar, Legal Guide and Political Buy Forms

The full 2020 Political Calendar already is online in the Member Services section of the TAB website. It features all the important 2020 political dates, from filing, voter registration and early voting windows, to primary, uniform and general election dates, to the FCC’s political rate windows for those elections.

Meanwhile, Flick is putting the finishing touches on TAB’s new Legal Guide to Political Broadcasting and TAB’s political forms. Members will be alerted as soon as they’re posted to the TAB website.

The guide includes instructions for complying with the FCC’s new rules on third-party issue ads and forms that have been revised to capture all the information required for complying with the commission’s political recordkeeping requirements.

The TAB Political Update email

One of TAB’s more popular member services is the TAB Political Update email advisory.

The TAB Political Update email provides up to the minute details on political races and other news that could affect political advertising and station news coverage. The first for the 2020 election year was sent in early June and we’ll keep them coming through the 2020 General Election.

General managers, news directors and general sales managers at TAB member stations are automatically subscribed to the TAB Political Update email. Other station personnel can be added; GMs should send TAB their email address and we’ll add them to the distribution list. 

Issues of the TAB Political Update email are archived on the TAB website.

TAB Legal Hotline

Having difficulty understanding how an FCC political broadcast regulation applies? The TAB Legal Hotline is there to help.

The hotline provides TAB member stations with answers to their general questions related to FCC regulations and Texas state law that impacts broadcast operations. Our hotline attorneys will be there to help stations throughout the 2020 election year.

Questions?  Contact TAB's Michael Schneider or call (512) 322-9944.

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