(Senate - February 14, 2019)

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[Page S1391]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office []


  Mr. BARRASSO (for himself, Mr. Heinrich, Mr. Boozman, Ms. Collins, 
and Mr. Udall) submitted the following concurrent resolution; which was 
referred to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation:

                             S. Con. Res. 5

       Whereas the United States enjoys broadcasting and sound 
     recording industries that are the envy of the world due to 
     the symbiotic relationship that has existed among these 
     industries for many decades;
       Whereas, for nearly a century, Congress has rejected 
     repeated calls by the recording industry to impose a 
     performance fee on local radio stations for simply playing 
     music on the radio, as such a fee would upset the mutually 
     beneficial relationship between local radio and the recording 
       Whereas local radio stations provide free publicity and 
     promotion to the recording industry and performers of music 
     in the form of radio airplay, interviews with performers, 
     introduction of new performers, concert promotions, and 
     publicity that promotes the sale of music, concert tickets, 
     ring tones, music videos, and associated merchandise;
       Whereas committees in the Senate and the House of 
     Representatives have previously reported that ``the sale of 
     many sound recordings and the careers of many performers have 
     benefitted considerably from airplay and other promotional 
     activities provided by both noncommercial and advertiser-
     supported, free over-the-air broadcasting'';
       Whereas local radio broadcasters provide tens of thousands 
     of hours of essential local news and weather information 
     during times of national emergencies and natural disasters, 
     as well as public affairs programming, sports, and hundreds 
     of millions of dollars worth of time for public service 
     announcements and local fund raising efforts for worthy 
     charitable causes, all of which are jeopardized if local 
     radio stations are forced to divert revenues to pay for a new 
     performance fee;
       Whereas there are many thousands of local radio stations 
     that will suffer severe economic hardship if any new 
     performance fee is imposed, as will many other small 
     businesses that play music, including bars, restaurants, 
     retail establishments, sports and other entertainment venues, 
     shopping centers, and transportation facilities; and
       Whereas the hardship that would result from a new 
     performance fee would hurt businesses in the United States 
     and ultimately the consumers in the United States who rely on 
     local radio for news, weather, and entertainment, and such a 
     performance fee is not justified when the current system has 
     produced the most prolific and innovative broadcasting, 
     music, and sound recording industries in the world: Now, 
     therefore, be it
       Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives 
     concurring), That Congress should not impose any new 
     performance fee, tax, royalty, or other charge--
       (1) relating to the public performance of sound recordings 
     on a local radio station for broadcasting sound recordings 
     over the air; or
       (2) on any business for the public performance of sound 
     recordings on a local radio station broadcast over the air.