United States Third Circuit

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Howard Stirk Holdings LLC v. FCC, 15-3863

In consolidated challenges to the broadcast ownership rules and diversity initiatives of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), specifically the FCC's 'eligible entity' definition, its Quadrennial Review process, and its rule on television joint sales agreements, the FCC's delay and actions are: 1) remanded with an order for the FCC to act promptly where it has unreasonably delayed action on its definition of an 'eligible entity,' a term it has attempted to use as a lynchpin for initiatives to promote minority and female broadcast ownership; 2) reversed where federal law commands the FCC to conduct a review of its rules every four years, but the 2006 cycle is the last one it has finished; and 3) vacated as to a rule the FCC created to address the perceived problem of parties evading its ownership limits through the influence exerted by advertising contracts, known as joint sales agreement, where the FCC improperly enacted the rule.

Appellate Information

  • Decided
  • Published 2016/05/25




  • United States Third Circuit


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