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Federal Communications Commission
Washington, D.C. 20554
In the Matter of )
) File Number EB-02-
Qwest Corporation ) PL-086
Owner of an antenna structure )
located west of Comstock, MN ) NAL/Acct. No.
NOTICE OF APPARENT LIABILITY FOR FORFEITURE
Released: September 26,
By the Resident Agent, Saint Paul Office, Enforcement Bureau:
1. In this Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture
(``NAL''), we find that Qwest Corporation (``Qwest''), has
apparently violated Sections 17.4(a) and 17.50 of the
Commission's Rules (``Rules'')1 by failing to register an antenna
structure located west of Comstock, MN and failing to maintain
good visibility of the required antenna structure paint. We
conclude that Qwest is apparently liable for a forfeiture in the
amount of thirteen thousand dollars ($13,000).
2. Qwest owns an antenna supporting structure located at
or near geographical coordinates 46° 39' 32'' N latitude & 096°
45' 24'' W longitude west of Comstock, MN.
3. On June 5 and June 6, 2002, an agent of the
Commission's Saint Paul Office inspected the Qwest antenna
structure located at 46° 39' 32'' N latitude & 096° 45' 24'' W
longitude west of Comstock, MN. The agent observed no Antenna
Structure Registration (``ASR'') number posted to identify this
structure. The FCC ASR database had no record that this antenna
structure had been registered. The agent noted that the paint on
the tower was badly faded.
4. Section 17.4(a) of the Rules provides that the owner of
antenna structures that require notice to the Federal Aviation
Administration (``FAA'') must register structures with the
Commission. Qwest's antenna structure required notice to the
FAA, and thus required registration with the Commission, because
the structure exceeded 200 feet in height.2 Qwest failed to
register its antenna structure west of Comstock, MN as of June 6,
5. Section 17.50 of the Rules states that antenna
structures requiring painting shall be cleaned or repainted as
often as necessary to maintain good visibility. The agent noted
that the paint was badly faded on June 5 and June 6, 2002.
6. Based on the evidence before us, we find that on June 5
and June 6, 2002, Qwest willfully3 and repeatedly4 violated
Sections 17.4(a) and 17.50 of the Rules by failing to register
its antenna structure and failing to maintain the tower paint in
such condition that good visibility was achieved. The
Commission's Forfeiture Policy Statement and Amendment of Section
1.80 of the Rules to Incorporate the Forfeiture Guidelines, 12
FCC Rcd 17087, 17113 (1997), recon. denied, 15 FCC Rcd 303(1999)
(``Forfeiture Policy Statement'')5, sets the base forfeiture
amount for failure to register an antenna structure at $3,000 for
each violation, and for failure to comply with prescribed
lighting and marking at $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.6 Applying the Forfeiture Policy Statement
and the statutory factors to the instant case and applying the
inflation adjustments, we believe that a thirteen thousand dollar
($13,000) monetary forfeiture is warranted.
IV. ORDERING CLAUSES
7. Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED THAT, pursuant to Section
503(b) of the Act,7 and Sections 0.111, 0.311 and 1.80 of the
Rules,8 Qwest is hereby NOTIFIED of this APPARENT LIABILITY FOR A
FORFEITURE in the amount of thirteen thousand dollars ($13,000)
for willful and repeated violation of Sections 17.4(a) and 17.50
of the Rules by failing to register its antenna structure and
failing to maintain the tower paint in good condition.
8. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED THAT, pursuant to Section 1.80 of
the Rules, within thirty days of the release date of this NOTICE
OF APPARENT LIABILITY, Qwest SHALL PAY the full amount of the
proposed forfeiture or SHALL FILE a written statement seeking
reduction or cancellation of the proposed forfeiture.
9. 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. 200232420001 and FRN 0001-6169-29.
10. 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.
11. 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
12. 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, D.C. 20554.9
13. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED THAT a copy of this NOTICE OF
APPARENT LIABILITY shall be sent by regular mail and Certified
Mail, Return Receipt Requested, to Qwest Corporation, 700 W.
Mineral Avenue, Room CO G1.24, Littleton, Colorado 80120.
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
F. M. Evans, P. E.
Saint Paul Office
1 47 C.F.R. §§ 17.4(a) and 17.50.
2 See 47 C.F.R. § 17.7(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 4387-88 (1991).
4 Section 312(f)(2) of the Act, 47 U.S.C. § 312(f)(2), which also
applies to Section 503(b), provides: [t]he term ``repeated,''
when used with reference to the commission or omission of any
act, means the commission or omission of such act more than once
or, if such commission or omission is continuous, for more than
547 C.F.R. § 1.80.
6 47 U.S.C. § 503(b)(2)(D).
7 47 U.S.C. § 503(b).
8 47 C.F.R. §§ 0.111, and 0.311.
9 See 47 C.F.R. § 1.1914.