The Federal Communications Commission waived the primetime access rule for four former Fox affiliates that scrambled to become NBC and ABC affils following last year’s affiliation agreement between Fox and New World Communications.

The FCC decision means the stations may air syndicated off-network programming such as “Home Improvement” in the hour before primetime known as prime access until the PTAR reg expires Aug. 30. PTAR prohibits top-50 network affils from airing off-network fare in prime access, but was repealed last month.

The stations – Act Ill-owned WNRW-TV Winston-Salem, N.C., and Scripps Howard-owned KSHB-TV Kansas City, WFTS-TV Tampa and KNXV-TV Phoenix – are located in top-50 markets and were disaffiliated from Fox when Fox switched affiliations in those markets to the New World stations.

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