Tower ambiguities lead to dismissal, reinstatement of FM CP grant


Southwest Georgia Project for Community Education Inc. and Darton College were two of a group of four applicants hoping to build a new FM station in Georgia, with SGPCE shooting for a station licensed to Sasser GA and DC for a station licensed to Albany GA. In an unusual case, SGPCE lost and then regained the FCC’s go-ahead for its proposal.

SGPCE won the CP on points in a comparative hearing, with DC coming in second. The winning proposal specified an antenna height of 164’. In its application, it claimed reasonable assurance that it had a place to hang its antenna, on tower owned by Diamond Towers.

DC noted that the Diamond certification of space specified three availabilities, the shortest of which was at 260’. The others were 280’ and 300’. DC argued that availability at the 164’ level was not specified, provided further arguments from an engineer, and petitioned for the denial of the SGPCE CP and a grant of the allocation to DC as the next-best alternative. The FCC agreed.

However, in its response to the denial, SGPCE said it that while Diamond noted height levels that were available, it was not a comprehensive list of available heights. It said it did in fact have assurances from Diamond that it would have space at 164’, and Diamond supported the counter-argument.

The FCC agreed – it said it had honored DC’s petition to deny in error, reinstated its CP, and undid DC’s opportunity to build a station.