On Thursday, June 21, Reps. Mike Doyle (D-Penn.) and Lee Terry (R-Neb.) and Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) introduced the Local Community Radio Act (H.R. 2808 and S. 1675). Increased diversity of the airwaves may be just around the corner if the Local Community Radio Act passes congress.
Recent studies have shown that thousands of low power frequencies could be opened up, even in cities with dozens of radio stations, without interfering with existing signals. This bill will open up those frequencies to not-for-profit organizations in both urban and rural communities.
Organizations like ours (Elohi Gadugi) could apply for a license and offer programming on indigenous rights, environmental responsibility, local indie music and literary arts, for example. Other organizations might offer programming in immigrant languages, or local talk radio.
Even with a great progressive station like KBOO, Portland could use more voices and more outlets for diverse opinion. And many cities have nothing like KBOO at all.
You can go to Expand LPFM to sign a petition and learn more about how to become active.
You can also send a message to your congressional representative, asking them to get onboard for this bill. Portland’s Rep. Earl Blumenauer could especially be a good ally in this effort.