FCC Report 12/23: Government Building A Wall Around FCC Activity

FCC Juan Alberto Ayala Translator AbuseWith the federal government currently shutdown, the FCC has stated that it has enough funding to pay its staff through at least the close of business on January 2. That will enable the commission to continue to remain open during the holiday season and into the new year.

Should the government shutdown continue past 1/2/2019, all FCC activities will cease other than those immediately necessary for the protection of life or property, performing other excepted activities or those funded through a source other than lapsed appropriations. That includes “management of radio spectrum and the creation of new opportunities for competitive technologies and services for the American public must be suspended” including new filings, accepting and approving applications for facility modifications, license transfers, and call letter changes.

FCC Actions

The FCC has entered into a consent decree with Sound Ideas LLC’s 97.9 WYDK Eufaula AL imposing a $12,000 civil penalty for prematurely ending a contest in 2016, failing to
award the advertised prizes, and instead giving the prize to one of its employees. During the FCC’s investigation it also discovered that the licensee had transferred de facto control of the Station to Daystar Media Group without Commission authorization. The licensee of the currently Silent station has admitted that it violated the Contest and Unauthorized Transfer rules and will implement a compliance plan as part of the consent decree. WYDK went silent in August due to “power issues”.

Birach Broadcasting’s 1460 WPON Walled Lake MI has been issued an $18,000 fine for “willfull and repeated operation of the Station at variance from its license”, “willfully failed to timely file for special temporary authorization to operate with its nonconforming technical facilities”, and “willfully failed to disclose material information regarding the unauthorized operations”. As part of its 2012 license renewal application, the station’s license will only be granted a one year renewal.

Cumberland City Broadcasting’s 1280 WCPM Cumberland KY had its license revoked as the agency determined the station has been silent or operating with unauthorized facilities since at least December 5, 2017. The station had filed a Silent STA on 12/7/2017 which was then extended in June 2018 giving the station until midnight on December 6 to return to its licensed operation. However the station filed a Notice of Resumption of Operation on December 3 claiming that it had resumed operation on November 29 from a temporary site which its lawyer since admitted was without authorization from the FCC.

Wendolynn Tellez’ 94.1 K231CG Waco TX has been deleted after an argument from M&M Broadcasters that the translator’s original CP had never been constructed. M&M supplied a letter from American Tower Corporation that the tower site owner “does not and has never had an agreement with Wendolynn Tellez relating to the above referenced site” and demonstrated that it did not operate from and authorized facility from January 2017 to at least July 2018. Edwards Media had been operating the translator since October as “CBS Sports 94.1” via 94.5 KWBT-HD2.

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