NAB Statement on FCC Regulatory Fees for Fiscal Year 2021

August 27, 2021

WASHINGTON, D.C. — In response to an order by the Federal Communications Commission setting regulatory fees for Fiscal Year 2021, the following statement can be attributed to NAB Senior Vice President of Communications Ann Marie Cumming:

“NAB greatly appreciates the FCC’s efforts to revise its original regulatory fee proposal that would have required local radio and television broadcasters to subsidize unrelated work at the Commission. The change is not only the right outcome, but critical to the many broadcasters’ ongoing service to their local communities.

“NAB and our members look forward to working with the FCC in the coming year to take a deeper look at the regulatory fee process to ensure all stakeholders that benefit from the Commission’s work are paying their fair share and that those currently subsidizing the Commission are no longer paying for work unrelated to their industries.”

On background: Under the FCC’s initial regulatory fee proposal for Fiscal Year 2021, broadcasters faced a 5-15% increase in regulatory fees, despite the Commission’s general salary and expenses budget increasing by only 0.5%. In its comments and reply comments, NAB said the proposed increase was based on the FCC’s decision to make broadcasters pay for a significant portion of the $33 million in additional funding that was specifically appropriated by Congress to implement the Broadband DATA Act and other inequities in the FCC’s approach.

In its meetings with FCC Commissioners and staff, NAB urged the Commission to:

  • adjust its proposal so that only the beneficiaries of the Commission’s Broadband DATA Act initiatives pay for the associated costs;
  • ensure that the wireless industry pays for its fair share of the Commission’s costs;
  • expand the base of fee payers to include Big Tech and other unlicensed spectrum users that use a substantial amount of the Commission’s resources and benefit from its activities; and
  • refrain from moving forward with its proposal to change broadcast television fees from a more accurate, individual population-based fee to a less precise tiered system.

About NAB

The National Association of Broadcasters is the premier advocacy association for America’s broadcasters. NAB advances radio and television interests in legislative, regulatory and public affairs. Through advocacy, education and innovation, NAB enables broadcasters to best serve their communities, strengthen their businesses and seize new opportunities in the digital age. Learn more at

Article Courtesy NAB