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                           Before the
                Federal Communications Commission
                     Washington, D.C. 20554


In the Matter of                )
                                )
Hancock Broadcasting Corporation)
WBSL (AM)                      )                                                

File No. EB-01-OR-012
Bay St. Louis, Mississippi 39520)                                     

NAL/Acct. No. 200132620003


           NOTICE OF APPARENT LIABILITY FOR FORFEITURE

                                                 Released: April 
4, 2001

By the Enforcement Bureau, New Orleans Field Office:


                        I.  INTRODUCTION

     1.   In this Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, we 
find Hancock Broadcasting Corporation  (Hancock), licensee of  AM 
broadcast station WBSL, has apparently violated Sections 11.35(a) 
and 73.49 of  the Commission's  Rules (``Rules'')  by failing  to 
ensure that Emergency Alert System (EAS) equipment was  installed 
and operating,  and  failing  to  enclose  the  tower  within  an 
effective locked  fence or  other enclosure.1   We conclude  that 
Hancock  Broadcasting  Corporation   is  apparently  liable   for 
forfeiture in the amount of fifteen thousand dollars ($15,000).  


                         II.  BACKGROUND

     2.   On January 24, 2001, an agent from the Commission's New 

Orleans Field Office  (``Field Office'')  inspected AM  broadcast 

station WBSL.  During this inspection, the agent determined  that 

the EAS  equipment  was  not properly  installed  or  capable  of 

monitoring or receiving EAS  messages, and the station's  antenna 

structure was  not  in compliance  with  the Rules  in  that  the 

antenna structure  was not  enclosed within  an effective  locked 

fence or other enclosure.
 
     3.   On January 29,  2001, a Notice  of Violation (NOV)  was 

issued to  Hancock citing  these deficiencies.   On February  20, 

2001, Hancock submitted a written  reply stating that it now  had 

EAS equipment properly  installed and functioning,  and that  the 

tower site was now enclosed within a chain and padlocked fence.  


                        III.  DISCUSSION

     4.   Section 11.35(a)  of the  Rules  states in  part  that, 
``Broadcast stations and cable systems 


and wireless  systems  are  responsible  for  ensuring  that  EAS 
Encoders,  EAS  Decoders  and  Attention  Signal  generating  and 
receiving equipment used as part of the EAS are installed so that 
the monitoring and  transmitting functions  are available  during 
the times the stations and systems are in operation.''  

     5.   Section 73.49  of  the  Rules requires  the  owners  of 
antenna towers having  radio frequency potential  at the base  to 
enclose the  tower  within an  effective  locked fence  or  other 
enclosure. 

     6.   Based on  the  evidence  before us,  we  find  that  on 

January 24, 2001, Hancock  willfully2 violated Sections  11.35(a) 

and 73.49 of the Rules by failing to have EAS equipment installed 

so that monitoring and transmitting functions were available, and 

failing to enclose the tower within an effective locked fence  or 

other enclosure.
 
     7.   Pursuant to Section 1.80(b)(4) of the Rules, Guidelines 

for Assessing Forfeiture, the base forfeiture amount for  failure 

to install and have functioning EAS equipment is $8,000, and  the 

base forfeiture amount for failure to enclose the tower within an 

effective locked  fence is  $7,000.3  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 (``Act''),  as amended,  which include  the  nature, 

circumstances, extent, and gravity of the violation(s), 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.4  Applying Section 1.80(b)(4)  of the  Rules 

and statutory factors to the instant case, we find no  compelling 

evidence to  support  any  adjustments  to  the  base  forfeiture 

amounts.  Therefore, a total forfeiture in the amount of  $15,000 

is warranted.


                      IV.  ORDERING CLAUSES

     8.   Accordingly, IT IS  ORDERED THAT,  pursuant to  Section 

503(b) of the  Act,5 and Sections  0.111, 0.311 and  1.80 of  the 

Commission's Rules,6 Hancock Broadcasting Corporation, is  hereby 

NOTIFIED of  their APPARENT  LIABILITY FOR  A FORFEITURE  in  the 

amount  of  fifteen  thousand  dollars  ($15,000)  for  violating 

Sections 11.35(a) and 73.49 of the Commission's Rules, 47  C.F.R. 

 11.35(a) and 73.49. 

     9.   IT IS FURTHER ORDERED THAT, pursuant to Section 1.80 of 
the Rules7, within thirty days of the release date of this NOTICE 
OF APPARENT LIABILITY, Hancock Broadcasting 

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. 200132620003.

     11.  The response, if any, must  be mailed to Office of  the 
Secretary, Federal  Communications Commission,  445 12th  Street, 
S.W.,  Washington,  D.C.  20554,   ATTN:  Enforcement  Bureau   - 
Technical and  Public  Safety  Division,  and  must  include  the 
NAL/Acct. No. 200132620003.

     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; 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 submitted.

     13.  Requests for payment of the full amount of this  Notice 
of Apparent Liability  under an installment  plan should be  sent 
to:  Federal  Communications   Commission,  Chief,  Revenue   and 
Receivables Operation Group, 445  12th Street, S.W.,  Washington, 
D.C. 20554.8

     14.  IT IS FURTHER  ORDERED THAT  a copy of  this NOTICE  OF 
APPARENT LIABILITY  shall  be  sent  by  Certified  Mail,  Return 
Receipt Requested,  to  Hancock  Broadcasting  Corporation,  WBSL 
(AM), 1190 Casino Magic Drive, Bay St. Louis, Mississippi 39520.


                         FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION





                         James C. Hawkins
                         District Director
                         New Orleans Field Office
_________________________

1 47 C.F.R.  11.35(a), 73.49.

2 Section 312(f)(1) of the Act, 47 U.S.C. 312(f)(1), which 
applies to Section 503(b) of the Act, provides that ``[t]he term 
`willful', when used with reference to commission or omission of 
any act, means that 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).  

3 47. C.F.R. 1.80(b)(4).

4 47 U.S.C.  503(b)(2)(D).

5 47 U.S.C  503(b).

6 47 C.F.R.  0.111, 0.311, 1.80.

7 47 C.F.R. 1.80

8 See 47 C.F.R.  1.1914.