Their objections were raised in a filing with the FCC, which is considering the transfer of five Belo stations in St. Louis, Phoenix and Tucson markets to Sander Operating Co. and Tucker Operating Co. The ACA, Time Warner Cable and DirecTV say that such a transfer is a means to rely on "a series of shills or 'third-party sidecars" and get around rules limiting ownership of stations in the same market.
ACA, Times Warner Cable and DirecTV are asking the FCC to either deny the transfer of licenses, or impose conditions to restrict the coordination of negotiation of retrans deals.
The stations at issue are KMOV-TV in St. Louis, KTVK-TV and KASW-TV in Phoenix and KMSB-TV and KTTU-TV in Tucson.
Gannett's deal for Belo will nearly double its broadcast holdings from 23 stations to 43, with stations in 21 of the top 25 markets.
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