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FCC chief hopes clear way for Tribune sale

Nov. 29, 2007 at 4:19 PM

CHICAGO, Nov. 29 (UPI) -- The head of the Federal Communications Commission said he expected an FCC vote Friday on his plan to allow the sale of the Tribune Co.

Kevin Martin was seeking to provide the temporary regulatory relief that Chicago real estate magnate Sam Zell needs to close his $8.2 billion deal to take the Tribune private.

Martin circulated a proposal among the four other FCC commissioners addressing Zell and the Tribune and the need for temporary waivers to media cross-ownership rules and new broadcast licenses in the five markets where the media company owns both newspapers and broadcast outlets.

The proposal would enable Tribune's media portfolio to remain intact, exempt from cross-ownership restrictions for at least two years, the Chicago Tribune said.

If approved, Martin said, "That would allow for Tribune and purchaser to still have the 20 business days that I understand they need to try to close the transaction by the end of the year."

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