Class A television stations fined by FCC


LPTVThe bad news is that a pair of Class A low-power television stations had children’s programming list omissions, and one of them compounded the problem with additional public file omissions. But there is also some good news.

The good news is that the stations both responded to FCC requests for information and their transgressions were dealt with in a more routine manner than was happening with non-respondent Class A stations during 2012 – many of the non-respondents lost their Class A status.

This duo is simply going to lose some cash.

KSBS-LP Denver, licensed to Denver Digital Television LLC, is paying the larger amount. In addition to having failed to prepare and file children’s television programming lists, it also was missing issues/program lists in its public file.

The children’s omission carries a penalty of $3K and public file omissions are good for $10K. The FCC took into account the lengthy duration of the omissions and cranked the fine up to $23K. It has served a notice of apparent liability for that amount to the station.

WLNN-LP Boone NC, licensed to Carolina Rays LLC, was tripped up on the children’s reports as well, but was in compliance with FCC rules and regs otherwise and has been hit with an NAL for $3K.

RBR-TVBR observation: There are two core principals for dealing with the FCC that should be observed at all times. The first is to respond promptly to any FCC communications. The second is to respond with candor.

These stations are facing financial penalties, but there are a lot of other Class A stations that for whatever reason simply didn’t respond to FCC inquiries on the children’s programming lists. Many of the non-respondents were busted from Class A to LPTV status, a very bad development ahead of incentive auctions that offer Class As a chance to participate that will not be afforded to LPTVs.