In 2018, the FCC issued its Communications Marketplace Report that found that small operators (10K or fewer subs) pay on average 32% more in retrans fees than operators with 75K+ subs.

As the agency collects data for its 2020 report, ACA Connects is warning that the disparity in fees paid by the smallest and largest operators is actually likely much larger. It bases that on the fact that larger systems carry many more retransmission consent stations. ACAC also argues that size disparity should be calculated at the operator/parent company level, not the system level, saying that large operators own small systems and thus skew results.

ACAC reps met with FCC staffers via teleconference last week. The 2018 report estimated small systems pay $93.37 per sub per year in retrans payments, while large systems pay $70.88 per sub on average.

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