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Federal Communications Commission
Washington, D.C. 20554
In the Matter of )
United States Cellular ) File Number EB-02-KC-284
) NAL/Acct. No.20023256006
Owner of Antenna Structure No. )
1233307 near Ellsworth, Iowa ) FRN 000-437-322
NOTICE OF APPARENT LIABILITY FOR FORFEITURE
Released: June 5,
By the Enforcement Bureau, Kansas City Office:
1. In this Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, we
find that United States Cellular Corporation (``US Cellular''),
owner of antenna structure number 1233307 located near Ellsworth,
Iowa, willfully violated Sections 17.21 and 17.45 of the
Commission's Rules (``Rules''),1 by failing to light or paint its
antenna structure and failing to install temporary warning lights
on its antenna structure during construction. We find United
States Cellular Corporation apparently liable for forfeiture in
the amount of ten thousand dollars ($10,000).
2. On April 23, 2002, an agent from the FCC Enforcement
Bureau's Kansas City, Missouri Office inspected US Cellular's
antenna structure number 1233307 located near Ellsworth, Iowa at
coordinates 42-20-32.1 North Latitude by 093-34-18.8 West
Longitude. The antenna structure appeared to be under
construction. The agent determined the structure height at that
time to be at least 320 feet, thus requiring painting and
marking. The agent observed that the structure was unpainted and
that no lighting was installed. The agent interviewed several
workers at the site who stated that the structure had been
completed the day before, that the structure was approximately
330 feet in height, that no lights had been installed on the
structure, and that they were going to install the lights that
day. The agent contacted the area Federal Aviation
Administration (``FAA'') Flight Service Station and determined
that no report of a light outage had been made for a tower at
3. On April 30, 2002, the agent checked the FCC's Antenna
Structure Registration (``ASR'') database and found the antenna
structure had been registered on April 2, 2002, to US Cellular
and assigned ASR number 1233307. The ASR information showed the
structure height to be 350 feet, that the structure was to be
used for ``communications purposes,'' and prescribed lighting
requirements of medium intensity white lights during the day and
red lights at night.
4. Section 17.21 of the Rules requires painting and
lighting of antenna structures that exceed 200 feet in height or
require special aeronautical study. US Cellular's antenna
structure was observed on April 23, 2002 at a height of at least
320 feet and the structure was unpainted with no obstruction
lighting installed. Also, the FAA received no report of a light
outage for this antenna structure.2
5. Section 17.45 of the Rules requires that, for an
antenna structure requiring lighting that is under construction,
as the height of the structure exceeds each level at which
permanent obstruction lights will be required, two similar lights
shall be installed at each such level. US Cellular's antenna
structure has required lighting specifications of medium
intensity white lights during the day and red lights at night.
On April 23, 2002, construction on U.S. Cellular's antenna
structure had been completed on the previous day, the structure
had reached the height of at least 320 feet, yet no lighting had
been installed on the structure.
6. Based on the evidence before us, we find US Cellular
willfully3 violated Sections 17.21 and 17.45 of the Rules by
failing to light or paint its antenna structure and failing to
install temporary warning lights on its antenna structure during
7. Pursuant to Section 1.80(b)(4) of the Rules,4 the base
forfeiture amount for failure to comply with prescribed lighting
is $10,000. In assessing the monetary forfeiture amount, we must
also take into account the statutory factors set forth in Section
503(b)(2)(D) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended
(``Act''), which include the nature, circumstances, extent, and
gravity of the violation, and with respect to the violator, the
degree of culpability, any history of prior offenses, ability to
pay, and other such matters as justice may require.5 Considering
the entire record and applying the factors listed above, this
case warrants a $10,000 forfeiture.
IV. ORDERING CLAUSES
8. Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED THAT, pursuant to Section
503(b) of the Act,6 and Sections 0.111, 0.311 and 1.80 of the
Rules,7 United States Cellular Corporation is hereby NOTIFIED of
its APPARENT LIABILITY FOR A FORFEITURE in the amount of ten
thousand dollars ($10,000) for willful violation of Sections
17.21 and 17.45 of the Rules by failing to light or paint its
antenna structure and failing to install temporary warning lights
on its antenna structure during construction.
9. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED THAT, pursuant to Section 1.80 of
the Commission's Rules, within thirty days of the release date of
this NOTICE OF APPARENT LIABILITY, United States Cellular
Corporation SHALL PAY the full amount of the proposed forfeiture
or SHALL FILE a written statement seeking reduction or
cancellation of the proposed forfeiture.
10. Payment of the forfeiture may be made by mailing a
check or similar instrument, payable to the order of the Federal
Communications Commission, to the Forfeiture Collection Section,
Finance Branch, Federal Communications Commission, P.O. Box
73482, Chicago, Illinois 60673-7482. The payment should note the
NAL/Acct. No. and FRN referenced above. Requests for payment of
the full amount of this Notice of Apparent Liability under an
installment plan should be sent to: Chief, Revenue and
Receivables Operations Group, 445 12th Street, S.W., Washington,
11. The response, if any, must be mailed to Federal
Communications Commission, Office of the Secretary, 445 12th
Street SW, Washington DC 20554, Attn: Enforcement Bureau-
Technical & Public Safety Division and MUST INCLUDE THE NAL/Acct.
No. referenced above.
12. The Commission will not consider reducing or canceling
a forfeiture in response to a claim of inability to pay unless
the petitioner submits: (1) federal tax returns for the most
recent three-year period; (2) financial statements prepared
according to generally accepted accounting practices (``GAAP'');
or (3) some other reliable and objective documentation that
accurately reflects the petitioner's current financial status.
Any claim of inability to pay must specifically identify the
basis for the claim by reference to the financial documentation
13. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED THAT a copy of this NOTICE OF
APPARENT LIABILITY shall be sent by Certified Mail Return Receipt
Requested to United States Cellular Corporation at 8410 West Bryn
Mawr Ave Suite #700, Chicago, Illinois 60631. An additional copy
shall be sent to Peter M. Connolly, Esq. at 2099 Pennsylvania
Avenue Suite 100, Washington, DC 20006.
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
Robert C. McKinney
District Director - Kansas City Office,
1 47 C.F.R §§ 17.21 and 17.45.
2 See 47 C.F.R. § 17.48(a)
3 Section 312(f)(1) of the Act, 47 U.S.C. § 312(f)(1), which
applies to violations for which forfeitures are assessed under
Section 503(b) of the Act, provides that ``[t]he term `willful',
when used with reference to the commission or omission of any
act, means the conscious and deliberate commission or omission of
such act, irrespective of any intent to violate any provision of
this Act ....'' See Southern California Broadcasting Co., 6 FCC
Rcd 4387 (1991).
4 47 C.F.R. § 1.80(b)(4).
5 47 U.S.C. § 503(b)(2)(D).
6 47 U.S.C. § 503(b).
7 47 C.F.R. §§ 0.111, 0.311, 1.80.
8 See 47 C.F.R. § 1.1914.