Lawmaker Wants TV Blackouts to End

By: Associated press
By: Associated press

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - A state lawmaker has introduced a bill that would stop Cincinnati Bengals and Cleveland Browns games from being blacked out on local television if they're not sold out.

The bill introduced in the Ohio House on Monday by Democrat Robert Hagan of Youngstown would prohibit any team playing in publicly financed stadiums or arenas from blacking out games. A violation would result in the team repaying its public funding.

Hagan acknowledged that any such law would be challenged in court.

The Federal Communications Commission has been urged to rescind a federal rule barring cable and satellite systems from showing a sporting event that is blacked out on local stations. The NFL's policy says games not sold out 72 hours before kickoff cannot be shown on local television.

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