Click here for Adobe Acrobat version
Click here for Microsoft Word version
This document was converted from Microsoft Word.
Content from the original version of the document such as
headers, footers, footnotes, endnotes, graphics, and page numbers
will not show up in this text version.
All text attributes such as bold, italic, underlining, etc. from the
original document will not show up in this text version.
Features of the original document layout such as
columns, tables, line and letter spacing, pagination, and margins
will not be preserved in the text version.
If you need the complete document, download the
Microsoft Word or Adobe Acrobat version.
Federal Communications Commission
Washington, D.C. 20554
In the Matter of )
Michael H. Glass ) File Number: EB-07-OR-140
Licensee of WMER-AM ) NAL/Acct. No. 200832620004
Meridian, Mississippi ) FRN: 0003779345
Facility ID # 48542 )
NOTICE OF APPARENT LIABILITY FOR FORFEITURE
Released: March 6, 2008
By the District Director, New Orleans Office, South Central Region,
1. In this Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture ("NAL"), we find
that Michael H. Glass, licensee of station WMER-AM, in Meridian,
Mississippi, apparently willfully and repeatedly violated Sections
11.35 and 73.1745(a) of the Commission's Rules ("Rules") and Section
301 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended ("Act") by failing
to have an operational Emergency Alert System ("EAS"), failing to
operate within authorized power limitations and failing to have a
license for the station's Studio to Transmitter Link ("STL"). We
conclude, pursuant to Section 503(b) of the Act, that Mr. Glass is
apparently liable for a forfeiture in the amount of sixteen thousand
2. On December 7, 2007, the Commission's New Orleans Office of the
Enforcement Bureau ("New Orleans Office") received a complaint
concerning station WMER-AM. The complainant alleged station WMER-AM
did not have an operational EAS, was running over power at night, and
was operating an STL without a license. Station WMER-AM's license
requires it to reduce its power at night to 0.101 kW of power. Sunset
local time for the month of January is 5:15 P.M.
3. On January 14, 2008, agents from the New Orleans Office monitored the
field strength for station WMER-AM operating on 1390 kHz and observed
a reduction in field strength at night. However, the observed
reduction was not as much as required by the station's authorization.
WMER-AM reduced power by approximately 58%, and they are required to
reduce by 98%.
4. On January 15, 2008, the agents took field strength measurements of
the STL for WMER-AM operating on 948 MHz and determined that the
radiated signals exceeded the limits for operation under Part 15 of
the Commission's Rules ("Rules") and therefore required a license.
Agents also monitored the field strength for station WMER-AM on 1390
kHz, and again observed a reduction at night. However, the observed
reduction was not as much as required by the station's authorization.
WMER-AM again reduced power by approximately 58 percent.
5. On January 16, 2008, agents from the New Orleans Office, accompanied
by the licensee, inspected station WMER-AM at the main studio in
Meridian, Mississippi. During the inspection, Mr. Glass stated that
the station had not conducted any EAS tests for at least one month. He
tried to run an EAS test during the inspection but found the EAS
equipment non-operational. He was unable to produce any evidence, EAS
logs, or printouts to demonstrate that the EAS had been operational at
any point during the past year. He also stated the printer for the EAS
had been broken for a year. Inspection of the transmitter site
revealed station WMER-AM was operating at 2.1 kW at night, instead of
the required 0.101 kW. Mr. Glass confirmed that the station had been
using the same STL since the station began operations, but was not
able to provide a current license for the STL. The only license found
expired June 1, 2004. A search of the FCC licensee database did not
reveal a current license for the STL.
6. Section 503(b) of the Act provides that any person who willfully or
repeatedly fails to comply substantially with the terms and conditions
of any license, or willfully or repeatedly fails to comply with any of
the provisions of the Act or of any rule, regulation or order issued
by the Commission thereunder, shall be liable for a forfeiture
penalty. The term "willful" as used in Section 503(b) of the Act has
been interpreted to mean simply that the acts or omissions are
committed knowingly. The term "repeated" means the commission or
omission of such act more than once or for more than one day.
7. Section 11.35 of the Rules requires all broadcast stations to ensure
that EAS encoders, EAS decoders and Attention Signal generating and
receiving equipment is installed and operational so that the
monitoring and transmitting functions are available during the times
the station is in operation. Broadcast stations must also determine
the cause of any failure to receive required monthly and weekly EAS
tests, and must indicate in the station's log why any required tests
were not received and when defective equipment is removed and restored
to service. During the inspection, station WMER-AM tried but failed to
run an EAS test and could not demonstrate that its EAS was
operational. There was also no evidence that the EAS equipment had
been operational at any time during the past year.
8. Section 73.1745(a) of the Rules states that no broadcast station shall
operate at times, or with modes or power, other than those specified
and made a part of the license, unless otherwise provided in this
part. Station WMER-AM is authorized to operate at 0.101 kW of power
at night. On January 14 and 15, 2008, agents observed that station
WMER-AM did not reduce its power to the required levels after sunset
local time. The agents later confirmed that the transmitter was set to
operate at 2.1kW at night.
9. Section 301 of the Act requires that no person shall use or operate
any apparatus for the transmission of energy or communications or
signals by radio within the United States except under and in
accordance with the Act and with a license. In particular, Section 301
of the Act states that "[n]o person shall use or operate any apparatus
for the transmission of energy or communications or signals by radio
(a) from one place in any State, Territory, or possession of the
United States or in the District of Columbia to another place in the
same State, Territory, possession, or District; . . . except under and
in accordance with this chapter and with a license in that behalf
granted under the provisions of this chapter." Section 74.6 of the
Rules states applicants for and licensees of low power auxiliary
stations authorized under subparts D, E, F, and H of this part are
subject to the application and procedural rules for wireless
telecommunications services contained in part 1, subpart F of this
chapter. Section 1.903 located in part 1, subpart F, requires stations
in the Wireless Radio Services to be used and operated with a valid
authorization granted by the Commission. On January 15, 2008, agents
from the New Orleans Office determined that station WMER-AM was using
an STL on 948 MHz without a license. The owner for station WMER-AM
admitted that the station had been using the same STL since it began
operations. The owner was only able to produce a license for the STL
that expired in 2004.
10. Based on the evidence before us, we find that Mr. Glass apparently
willfully and repeatedly violated Sections 11.35 and 73.1745(a) of the
Rules and Section 301 of the Act by failing to have an operational
EAS, failing to operate within authorized power limitations, and
failing to have a license for the station's STL.
11. Pursuant to The Commission's Forfeiture Policy Statement and Amendment
of Section 1.80 of the Rules to Incorporate the Forfeiture Guidelines,
("Forfeiture Policy Statement"), and Section 1.80 of the Rules, the
base forfeiture amount for failing to have an operational Emergency
Alert System is $8,000, the base forfeiture amount for failing to
operate within authorized power limitations is $4,000 and the base
forfeiture amount for operation without an instrument of authorization
for the service 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)(E) of the Act, which include the nature,
circumstances, extent, and gravity of the violations, and with respect
to the violator, the degree of culpability, and history of prior
offenses, ability to pay, and other such matters as justice may
require. Given that the unauthorized operation of the STL in this case
is not a violation on the same order as construction and operation
with no color of authority, we believe a reduction in the base
forfeiture amount is warranted and, therefore, conclude a forfeiture
amount of $4,000 is appropriate for this offense. Applying the
Forfeiture Policy Statement, Section 1.80 of the Rules, and the
statutory factors to the instant case, we conclude that Mr. Glass is
apparently liable for a ($16,000) forfeiture.
IV. ORDERING CLAUSES
12. Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED that, pursuant to Section 503(b) of the
Communications Act of 1934, as amended, and Sections 0.111, 0.311,
0.314 and 1.80 of the Commission's Rules, Michael H. Glass is hereby
NOTIFIED of this APPARENT LIABILITY FOR A FORFEITURE in the amount of
sixteen thousand dollars ($16,000) for violations of Sections 11.35
and 73.1745(a) of the Rules, and Section 301 of the Act.
13. 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 for Forfeiture, Michael H. Glass SHALL
PAY the full amount of the proposed forfeiture or SHALL FILE a written
statement seeking reduction or cancellation of the proposed
14. Payment of the forfeiture must be made by check or similar instrument,
payable to the order of the Federal Communications Commission. The
payment must include the NAL/Account Number and FRN Number referenced
above. Payment by check or money order may be mailed to Federal
Communications Commission, P.O. Box 979088, St. Louis, MO 63197-9000.
Payment by overnight mail may be sent to U.S. Bank - Government
Lockbox #979088, SL-MO-C2-GL, 1005 Convention Plaza, St. Louis, MO
63101. Payment[s] by wire transfer may be made to ABA Number
021030004, receiving bank TREAS/NYC, and account number 27000001. For
payment by credit card, an FCC Form 159 (Remittance Advice) must be
submitted. When completing the FCC Form 159, enter the NAL/Account
number in block number 23A (call sign/other ID), and enter the letters
"FORF" in block number 24A (payment type code). Requests for full
payment under an installment plan should be sent to: Chief Financial
Officer -- Financial Operations, 445 12th Street, S.W., Room 1-A625,
Washington, D.C. 20554. Please contact the Financial Operations
Group Help Desk at 1-877-480-3201 or Email: ARINQUIRIES@fcc.gov with
any questions regarding payment procedures.
15. The response, if any, must be mailed to Federal Communications
Commission, Enforcement Bureau, South Central Region, New Orleans
Office, 2424 Edenborn Ave., Suite 460, Metairie, Louisiana, 70001 and
must include the NAL/Acct. No. referenced in the caption.
16. 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 submitted.
17. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that a copy of this Notice of Apparent Liability
for Forfeiture shall be sent by Certified Mail, Return Receipt
Requested, and regular mail, to Michael H. Glass at his address of
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
New Orleans Office
South Central Region
47 C.F.R. S:S: 11.35, 73.1745(a); 47 U.S.C. S: 301.
47 U.S.C. S: 503(b).
Section 15.209 of the Rules provides that non-licensed broadcasting in the
216-960 MHz band is permitted only if the field strength of the
transmission does not exceed 200 mV/m at three meters. 47 C.F.R. S:
15.209. On January 15, 2008, the measurements indicated that the signals
were 4,044 times greater, than the maximum permissible level for a
non-licensed Part 15 transmitter.
Section 312(f)(1) of the Act, 47 U.S.C. S: 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 or any rule or regulation of the Commission
authorized by this Act...." See Southern California Broadcasting Co., 6
FCC Rcd 4387 (1991).
Section 312(f)(2) of the Act, 47 U.S.C. S: 312(f)(2), which also applies
to violations for which forfeitures are assessed under Section 503(b) of
the Act, provides that "[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 one day."
47 C.F.R. S: 11.35.
47 C.F.R. S: 73.1745(a).
47 U.S.C. S: 301.
47 C.F.R. S: 74.6.
Based on this admission, station WMER-AM used its STL more than 720 hours
annually. See 47 C.F.R. S: 74.24(d).
12 FCC Rcd 17087 (1997), recon. denied, 15 FCC Rcd 303 (1999); 47 C.F.R.
47 U.S.C. S: 503(b)(2)(E).
See Arnold Broadcasting Company, Inc., 19 FCC Rcd 14123, 14125 (EB 2004),
aff'd 20 FCC Rcd 10617 (EB 2005).
47 U.S.C. S: 503(b) 301, 47 C.F.R. S:S: 0.111, 0.311, 0.314, 1.80, 11.35,
(...continued from previous page)
Federal Communications Commission
Federal Communications Commission