AM-to-FM Simulcasters Top 400

From the didn’t-have-time-to-mention-last-year department: Radio World reports that more than 400 FM translator stations are now on the air simulcasting AM radio programming.
This is the result of a 2009 FCC decision allowing AM stations to apply for FM repeaters in a quest to find “relief” from the increasing noise floor on the AM dial. Spectrally, it’s a duplicative waste.
400 new translators is a far cry from the ~6,000 unleashed by the FCC during the Great Translator Invasion of 2003 – and there are another 7,000 translator applications pending from that mess. Licensing decisions on these translators are expected sometime this year, most likely before the FCC opens another LPFM filing window.
831 LPFM stations have been built over the last decade – just over twice the number of AM-simulcasters that have taken to the air in the last two years alone.
As the FCC prepares to open a second filing window for LPFM stations in the next year or so, let’s hope the agency acts with the spirit of the Local Community Radio Act in mind.