With some exceptions, all radio stations are required to have a “main studio”, which is open and staffed during business hours within close proximity to the community of service where the radio station is located.
The new Republican FCC chairman Ajit Pai has formally published the proposal to end the main studio rule. The rule already is significantly ignored and enforcement tends to be on a “we want to punish someone” basis for unrelated reasons – not that the public has any actual interest in visiting a physical office to review the public inspection file, which the FCC now allows people to view on the FCC website.
Long term, I’m not sure that this is a good thing. Right now there is at least a minimal presence in the communities – that cumulus and Iheart are likely to end to save money. Combined with relaxing foreign ownership rules, American Radio will become great again with unstaffed stations carrying programming from Mexico City.
The proposal does retain the requirement that the station have a local phone number, but that is close to a meaningless requirement. It is trivial to acquire a phone number without regard to where the answering phone is physically located. The only possible benefit is the call is a local call to the caller, but relatively few people still use land lines with a local calling area