FCC Revokes Washington DC LPFM Over Intent To Decieve
The FCC has revoked the Construction Permit for 103.1 WOOK-LP Washington DC for multiple violations including gaming the points system used to grant licenses during the 2013 LPFM Window.
Sincere Seven was granted the CP for WOOK-LP and quickly met with a Petition To Deny filed by Radio-One on the grounds that S7 was not an eligible nonprofit at the time of the filing. That petition was denied, but in a subsequent Petition For Reconsideration, Radio-One argued that Sincere Seven failed to list Executive Officer Perry Redd in filings their filing and mentioning that Redd was a convicted felon. The agency did order S7 to amend their applications to list Redd and his convictions which they failed to comply with.
The larger violation towards WOOK-LP came from a letter to the agency submitted by William Tucker. Tucker identified himself as the founder of “WOOK Radio LP” who then entered into a Fiscal Sponsorship Agreement with Sincere Seven in order to qualify for a point on the FCC’s LPFM scoring system as S7 was a licensed 501(c)(3) with the IRS and locally based in Washington. Tucker made the original application filing on the FCC’s CDBS and stated he had total control as Chief Operations Officer. He claimed that Sincere Seven terminated their agreement and unlawfully seized control of the license.
In their response back, S7 claimed that Perry Redd was never an officer of the group, but that if described as “Chief Manager, overseer, or executive” then he was an officer and that since his convictions were not related to broadcasting or the communications industry they were not of concern for the FCC.
The FCC order dismissing the license for WOOK-LP states that because Tucker’s letter shows that the original application was filed by Tucker through a CDBS account created by him, WOOK Radio LP was the real organization in control of the application and that WOOK intended to operate the station. Sincere Seven was a front for gaming the FCC’s point system and because of its tax-exempt status as a way to funnel donations. “From a regulatory standpoint, the FSA was effectively an agreement to cooperate in prosecuting a false FCC application presenting S7 rather than WOOK as the applicant.”
The conduct here by Redd, Tucker, S7 and WOOK shows a disturbing willingness to ignore or seif-servingly misinterpret Commission’s regulations and disclosure requirements, to ignore a Commission request to provide required information, and to submit inconsistent documents to different governmental agencies. Accordingly, we will require that a copy of this letter be submitted with any future application filed by or on behalf of any of them or to which any of them is a party.
The full order by the FCC can be read here.