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Feature: FCC Legalizes FM
How They Voted: Michael Powell

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Listen to Powell's Statement on LPFM (Real Audio, 7:52)

"To borrow and paraphrase from the medical profession's teachings, we should do so first in a way that does no harm."

"We regularly consider the economics of our actions on licensees...while (LPFM stations) will not be direct competitors for advertising dollars to existing commercial stations, they can threaten the economic health of the stations in meaningful ways.  LPFM stations may very well siphon financial support away from small market stations; local support that is primary coming to existing stations in the form of advertising might migrate to one or more LPFM stations in the form of permissible underwriting or sponsorship."

"Locally originated programming that we favor so often is expensive to produce compared to the scale efficiencies of syndicated or national programming.  The erosion of economic return - even slight in small markets - may adversely impact the quantity and quality of local programming, which is unlikely to be replaced by my microstations operating under even greater economic constraints."

"The threat of compromising the maxim of public interest, to my mind, should have compelled the Commission to fully consider the economic impacts of its decisions - and I'm at a loss to understand why it's refused to do so."

"I do believe it would be a perverse result if the consequence of introducing these new stations, for the promotion of individual voices and diversity, we end up compromising the viability of existing small market and minority and women-owned stations."