More Reaction To The AM In Every Vehicle Act


    The response continues to pour in for the historic AM For Every Vehicle Act after being introduced in Congress on Wednesday. The bipartisan act would legally require automakers to include AM radio receivers in all makes and models without any extra fees.

    How is the industry responding to the news? Radio Ink reached out to the band’s revenue leaders and more in the fight for AM about the AM For Every Vehicle Act.

    Vital To The Latino Community

    Broadcast lawyer and partner at Fletcher, Heald, & Hildreth Frank Montero said, “AM radio, despite not being the central platform for audio content that it once was decades ago, remains a critical means by which many Hispanic and other ethnic minorities receive news and information in this country. Among the Latino community, AM radio still plays a vital role in the community and limiting the ability to have access to AM radio in automobiles would have an overall negative impact on that population. The AM In Every Vehicle Act clearly aims to address that issue.”
    These comments were echoed by Latino Media Networks spokesperson Sonia V. Diaz. LMN owns several AMs in top ten markets. “More than any other medium, AM radio has played a vital role in the Hispanic community, helping to guide, entertain and provide critical information in a culturally competent and linguistically fluent manner.”
    Diaz continued, “Many of our communities, particularly those in rural areas with poor, or non-existent, cellular and broadband coverage, depend largely on AM radio to keep them informed during public safety emergencies, such as natural disasters and the recovery efforts surrounding them. Eliminating this resource not only disenfranchises millions of people, it stands to critically impact our already fragile public safety infrastructure.”

    Difficult To Duplicate

    Mary Sandberg Boyle is VP/General Manager of WGN-AM, one of the country’s most well-known heritage AM signals. Of the AM For Every Vehicle Act, Boyle commented, “WGN Radio produces difficult-to-duplicate local news and content. The electric cars all have audio streaming capabilities which is one reason why WGN radio has seen continued growth in its streaming numbers. Delivering our content via AM radio or any streaming device is irrelevant to the listener and the advertiser as long as our content remains desirable.

    Trusted Information Lifeline

    A consistent top performer, WECK-AM in Buffalo, NY is a ratings success. President and CEO Buddy Shula said, “As the highest-rated Oldies station in America, the BIG WECK in Buffalo, NY is very hopeful that this bill will move forward to law.”
    “The BIG WECK is the beacon of local information for nearly 1 million people in our great city, providing live, local entertainment and information to serve this incredible city. The deletion of AM radio from cars would take away a TRUSTED information lifeline vs the kind of social technology we now have which at best is questionable information on its best day.”


    1. No one has yet to mention that no one HAS to buy a new vehicle. The message about AM in car radios can be sent by purchasing a good USED vehicle with a radio that receives all the broadcast bands. I purchased a good USED truck that has a CD player. I don’t want to mess with memory sticks or pairing bluetooth devices. Forget an electric vehicle, I will never own one. I will never own a hybrid. No spare tire on a hybrid so if you get a flat you are SOL. I will always buy gas powered yard and field equipment since these are user servicable. Same with a gas powered vehicle. The EPA needs to go away and the market place decide with NO taxpayer subsidies to any electric vehicle or appliances.

    2. Happily, there is a handful of big-time AM stations still working hard to be live, local and meaningful. WGN, WECK, WLW, KFI, WABC, a few more. Sadly the number of these stations is dwindling and even the big stations have given up on programming after 10pm. Not to steal from the “network” shows but how many stations have to carry “AM Coast-To-Coast” from 10pm-5am? How about “Red-Eye Radio”? The number of stations carrying these shows is deafening. The replays? Unnecessary. Duplication? Unnecessary. There are over 4000 stations on the AM band. How many are actually mass appeal enough to maintain an audience? How many have given up their AM branding to promote their FM translator? Radio was brilliant when TV was threatening. Now the audio choices are limitless with more to come. The better product will win (as always)-but will it be AM? FM? Streaming? ATSC 3.0? Kudos to the broadcasters working on putting out a great relatable product. If broadcasters don’t really believe in AM radio, how can we expect the listeners to do that?


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