WASHINGTON — It’s that time again.
Broadcasters must register themselves again within the 2017 EAS Test Reporting System database, otherwise known as ETRS. But this year, the Federal Communications Commission is asking users to register for ETRS through the FCC’s CORES registration system.
Broadcasters should be familiar with CORES: this web-based, password-protected registration system is the one that assigns a unique 10-digit facility registration number, or FRN, to a those doing business with the FCC.
After ETRS was first launched and utilized during the September 2016 nationwide EAS test, the FCC moved to implement several changes to the registration process for 2017. This year, filers are being asked to use a single account to file on behalf of multiple FCC facility registration numbers.
All these new details are within a public notice released on June 26. Released by the FCC’s Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau, the notice directs all EAS participants to be properly logged into the CORES system to access ETRS and offers step-by-step instructions on how to create a username and how to link FRNs to that username.
A second public notice to be released in July will announce the availability of Form One, the registration form that all EAS participants must complete prior to the start of a nationwide EAS test.
Why register now? All EAS participants must renew identifying information on a yearly basis, or as required by any revision of the participant's state EAS Plan.
The details within the public notice state:
Filers must first create an FCC username within the proper user registration system
Users must then log into CORES with the same username to create a new FRN or associate the username with an existing FRN
Filers that already have a username for use with another FCC system (such as the Network Outage Reporting System or NORS) can use that same username to access CORES
When it comes to ETRS, the FCC reminds EAS participants that they must associate their FRNs to their FCC user name for it to be available in the ETRS.
The public notice also reminds all EAS participants — even those are silent via Special Temporary Authority — that they are required to file in the ETRS, and therefore should create a user name.
This year, the FCC has also made a change when it comes to the use of coordinators, a step that caused some consternation during the 2016 ETRS registration process. Last year, a participant with multiple facilities had to appoint an EAS coordinator by emailing the FCC and requesting coordinator status. After approval, that coordinator could then access and revise data for all filers using the same FRN. This year, instead, the account associated with an FRN will simply have immediate access to all filings associated with that same FRN, no special access required.
The public notice has detailed information on the registration process. Filers may also contact the CORES Help Desk for assistance with creating an FCC Username Account at CORESHelpDesk@fcc.gov or (202) 418-4120.
A version of this article was originally posted on RW.