Text: H.R.1677 — 101st Congress (1989-1990)All Information (Except Text)

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--H.R.1677--
H.R.1677
One Hundred First Congress of the United States of America
AT THE SECOND SESSION
Begun and held at the City of Washington on Tuesday, the twenty-third day
of January,
one thousand nine hundred and ninety
An Act
To require the Federal Communications Commission to reinstate restrictions
on advertising during children's television, to enforce the obligation of
broadcasters to meet the educational and informational needs of the child
audience, and for other purposes.
 Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United
 States of America in Congress assembled,
SHORT TITLE
 SECTION 1. This Act may be cited as the `Children's Television Act of 1990'.
TITLE I--REGULATION OF CHILDREN'S TELEVISION FINDINGS
 SEC. 101. The Congress finds that--
 (1) it has been clearly demonstrated that television can assist children to
 learn important information, skills, values, and behavior, while entertaining
 them and exciting their curiosity to learn about the world around them;
 (2) as part of their obligation to serve the public interest, television
 station operators and licensees should provide programming that serves the
 special needs of children;
 (3) the financial support of advertisers assists in the provision of
 programming to children;
 (4) special safeguards are appropriate to protect children from
 overcommercialization on television;
 (5) television station operators and licensees should follow practices in
 connection with children's television programming and advertising that take
 into consideration the characteristics of this child audience; and
 (6) it is therefore necessary that the Federal Communications Commission
 (hereinafter referred to as the `Commission') take the actions required by
 this title.
STANDARDS FOR CHILDREN'S TELEVISION PROGRAMMING
 SEC. 102. (a) The Commission shall, within 30 days after the date of
 enactment of this Act, initiate a rulemaking proceeding to prescribe
 standards applicable to commercial television broadcast licensees with
 respect to the time devoted to commercial matter in conjunction with
 children's television programming. The Commission shall, within 180 days
 after the date of enactment of this Act, complete the rulemaking proceeding
 and prescribe final standards that meet the requirements of subsection (b).
 (b) Except as provided in subsection (c), the standards prescribed under
 subsection (a) shall include the requirement that each commercial television
 broadcast licensee shall limit the duration of advertising in children's
 television programming to not more than 10.5 minutes per hour on weekends
 and not more than 12 minutes per hour on weekdays.
 (c) After January 1, 1993, the Commission--
 (1) may review and evaluate the advertising duration limitations required
 by subsection (b); and
 (2) may, after notice and public comment and a demonstration of the need
 for modification of such limitations, modify such limitations in accordance
 with the public interest.
 (d) As used in this section, the term `commercial television broadcast
 licensee' includes a cable operator, as defined in section 602 of the
 Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 522).
CONSIDERATION OF CHILDREN'S TELEVISION SERVICE IN BROADCAST LICENSE RENEWAL
 SEC. 103. (a) After the standards required by section 102 are in effect,
 the Commission shall, in its review of any application for renewal of a
 television broadcast license, consider the extent to which the licensee--
 (1) has complied with such standards; and
 (2) has served the educational and informational needs of children through
 the licensee's overall programming, including programming specifically
 designed to serve such needs.
 (b) In addition to consideration of the licensee's programming as required
 under subsection (a), the Commission may consider--
 (1) any special nonbroadcast efforts by the licensee which enhance the
 educational and informational value of such programming to children; and
 (2) any special efforts by the licensee to produce or support programming
 broadcast by another station in the licensee's marketplace which is
 specifically designed to serve the educational and informational needs
 of children.
PROGRAM LENGTH COMMERCIAL MATTER
 SEC. 104. Within 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the
 Commission shall complete the proceeding known as `Revision of Programming
 and Commercialization Policies, Ascertainment Requirements and Program Log
 Requirements for Commercial Television Stations', MM Docket No. 83-670.
TITLE II--ENDOWMENT FOR CHILDREN'S EDUCATIONAL TELEVISION
SHORT TITLE
 SEC. 201. This title may be cited as the `National Endowment for Children's
 Educational Television Act of 1990'.
FINDINGS
 SEC. 202. The Congress finds that--
 (1) children in the United States are lagging behind those in other countries
 in fundamental intellectual skills, including reading, writing, mathematics,
 science, and geography;
 (2) these fundamental skills are essential for the future governmental and
 industrial leadership of the United States;
 (3) the United States must act now to greatly improve the education of
 its children;
 (4) television is watched by children about three hours each day on average
 and can be effective in teaching children;
 (5) educational television programming for children is aired too infrequently
 either because public broadcast licensees and permittees lack funds or
 because commercial broadcast licensees and permittees or cable television
 system operators do not have the economic incentive; and
 (6) the Federal Government can assist in the creation of children's
 educational television by establishing a National Endowment for Children's
 Educational Television to supplement the children's educational programming
 funded by other governmental entities.
NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR CHILDREN'S EDUCATIONAL TELEVISION
 SEC. 203. (a) Part IV of title III of the Communications Act of 1934 (47
 U.S.C. 390 et seq.) is amended--
 (1) by redesignating section 394 as section 393A;
 (2) by redesignating subparts B, C, and D as subparts C, D, and E,
 respectively; and
 (3) by inserting immediately after section 393A, as so redesignated, the
 following new subpart:
`Subpart B--National Endowment for Children's Educational Television
`ESTABLISHMENT OF NATIONAL ENDOWMENT
 `SEC. 394. (a) It is the purpose of this section to enhance the education
 of children through the creation and production of television programming
 specifically directed toward the development of fundamental intellectual
 skills.
 `(b)(1) There is established, under the direction of the Secretary, a
 National Endowment for Children's Educational Television. In administering
 the National Endowment, the Secretary is authorized to--
 `(A) contract with the Corporation for the production of educational
 television programming for children; and
 `(B) make grants directly to persons proposing to create and produce
 educational television programming for children.
The Secretary shall consult with the Advisory Council on Children's Educational
Television in the making of the grants or the awarding of contracts for the
purpose of making the grants.
 `(2) Contracts and grants under this section shall be made on the condition
 that the programming shall--
 `(A) during the first two years after its production, be made available only
 to public television licensees and permittees and noncommercial television
 licensees and permittees; and
 `(B) thereafter be made available to any commercial television licensee
 or permittee or cable television system operator, at a charge established
 by the Secretary that will assure the maximum practicable distribution of
 such programming, so long as such licensee, permittee, or operator does
 not interrupt the programming with commercial advertisements.
The Secretary may, consistent with the purpose and provisions of this section,
permit the programming to be distributed to persons using other media,
establish conditions relating to such distribution, and apply those conditions
to any contract or grant made under this section. The Secretary may waive
the requirements of subparagraph (A) if the Secretary finds that neither
public television licensees and permittees nor noncommercial television
licensees and permittees will have an opportunity to air such programming
in the first two years after its production.
 `(c)(1) The Secretary, with the advice of the Advisory Council on Children's
 Educational Television, shall establish criteria for making contracts and
 grants under this section. Such criteria shall be consistent with the purpose
 and provisions of this section and shall be made available to interested
 parties upon request. Such criteria shall include--
 `(A) criteria to maximize the amount of programming that is produced with
 the funds made available by the Endowment;
 `(B) criteria to minimize the costs of--
 `(i) selection of grantees,
 `(ii) administering the contracts and grants, and
 `(iii) the administrative costs of the programming production; and
 `(C) criteria to otherwise maximize the proportion of funds made available
 by the Endowment that are expended for the cost of programming production.
 `(2) Applications for grants under this section shall be submitted to the
 Secretary in such form and containing such information as the Secretary
 shall require by regulation.
 `(d) Upon approving any application for a grant under subsection (b)(1)(B),
 the Secretary shall make a grant to the applicant in an amount determined
 by the Secretary, except that such amounts shall not exceed 75 percent of
 the amount determined by the Secretary to be the reasonable and necessary
 cost of the project for which the grant is made.
 `(e)(1) The Secretary shall establish an Advisory Council on Children's
 Educational Television. The Secretary shall appoint ten individuals as
 members of the Council and designate one of such members to serve as Chairman.
 `(2) Members of the Council shall have terms of two years, and no member
 shall serve for more than three consecutive terms. The members shall have
 expertise in the fields of education, psychology, child development, or
 television programming, or related disciplines. Officers and employees of
 the United States shall not be appointed as members.
 `(3) While away from their homes or regular places of business in the
 performance of duties for the Council, the members of the Council shall
 serve without compensation but shall be allowed travel expenses, including
 per diem in lieu of subsistence, in accordance with section 5703 of title 5,
 United States Code.
 `(4) The Council shall meet at the call of the Chairman and shall advise the
 Secretary concerning the making of contracts and grants under this section.
 `(f)(1) Each recipient of a grant under this section shall keep such records
 as may be reasonably necessary to enable the Secretary to carry out the
 Secretary's functions under this section, including records which fully
 disclose the amount and the disposition by such recipient of the proceeds of
 such grant, the total cost of the project, the amount and nature of that
 portion of the cost of the project supplied by other sources, and such
 other records as will facilitate an effective audit.
 `(2) The Secretary and the Comptroller General of the United States, or any
 of their duly authorized representatives, shall have access for the purposes
 of audit and examination to any books, documents, papers, and records of
 the recipient that are pertinent to a grant received under this section.
 `(g) The Secretary is authorized to make such rules and regulations as may
 be necessary to carry out this section, including those relating to the
 order of priority in approving applications for projects under this section
 or to determining the amounts of contracts and grants for such projects.
 `(h) There are authorized to be appropriated $2,000,000 for fiscal year
 1991 and $4,000,000 for fiscal year 1992 to be used by the Secretary to
 carry out the provisions of this section. Sums appropriated under this
 subsection for any fiscal year shall remain available for contracts and
 grants for projects for which applications approved under this section have
 been submitted wtihin one year after the last day of such fiscal year.
 `(i) For purposes of this section--
 `(1) the term `educational television programming for children' means
 any television program which is directed to  an audience of children who
 are 16 years of age or younger and which is designed for the intellectual
 development of those children, except that such term does not include any
 television program which is directed to a general audience but which might
 also be viewed by a significant number of children; and
 `(2) the term `person' means an individual, partnership, association, joint
 stock company, trust, corporation, or State or local governmental entity.'.
 (b) Section 397 of the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 397) is amended--
 (1) in paragraph (2) by striking `subpart C' and inserting in lieu thereof
 `subpart D'; and
 (2) in paragraph (15)--
 (A) by inserting `and subpart B' immediately after `subpart A'; and
 (B) by striking `subpart B, subpart C' and inserting in lieu thereof
 `subpart C, subpart D'.
Speaker of the House of Representatives.
Vice President of the United States and
President of the Senate.

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