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Federal Communications Commission
Washington, D.C. 20554
In the Matter of )
Tarrant Radio Broadcasting, ) File No. EB-01-DL-0813
Inc. ) NAL/Acct. No. 200232500003
Radio Station KZEE ) FRN 0006-7721-56
Adopted: September 9, 2002 Released: September 11,
By the Chief, Enforcement Bureau:
1. In this Forfeiture Order (``Order''),we issue a
monetary forfeiture in the amount of three thousand dollars
($3,000) to Tarrant Radio Broadcasting, Inc. (``Tarrant''),
licensee of Station KZEE(AM) in Weatherford, Texas, for willful
and repeated violation of Section 73.1560(a)(1) of the
Commission's Rules (``Rules'').1 The noted violation involves
Tarrant's operation of Station KZEE(AM) with an antenna input
power at a level more than 105% of authorized power.
2. On May 24, 2002, the Commission's Dallas, Texas Field
Office (``Dallas Office'') issued a Notice of Apparent Liability
for Forfeiture (``NAL'') in the amount of four thousand dollars
($4,000) to Tarrant for the noted violation. Tarrant filed a
response to the NAL on June 21, 2002.
3. On November 8 and 11, 2001, the Commission received
complaints alleging that Station KZEE(AM) in Weatherford, Texas
did not reduce antenna input power after sunset as required by
the station's license. KZEE(AM)'s license authorizes operation
at a daytime power level of 500 watts and a nighttime power level
of 8 watts. KZEE(AM)'s post-sunset authorization specifies, for
the month of January, a power level of 18.2 watts from 5:45 P.M.
to 6:45 P.M., and 8.5 watts from 6:45 P.M. to 7:45 P.M. local
4. On January 9, 2002, agents from the Dallas Office made
field strength measurements of KZEE(AM)'s signal from 5:22 P.M.,
before local sunset, to 9:25 P.M., well after local sunset. The
measurements revealed that KZEE(AM) operated at the daytime power
level of 500 watts after sunset.
5. On January 24, 2002, agents from the Dallas Office
again made field strength measurements of KZEE(AM)'s signal and
inspected the KZEE(AM) transmitter facilities. The inspection
and measurements revealed that the KZEE(AM) transmitter operated
during the daytime at 130 percent of the station's authorized
daytime power of 500 watts. During the inspection, station
personnel stated that they did not know how to operate the
transmitter's remote control and that station personnel did not
adjust the transmitter power level.
6. On February 5, 2002, the Dallas Office issued a Notice
of Violation (``NOV'') for overpower operation of KZEE(AM) in
violation of Section 73.1560(a)(1) of the Rules. In its response
to the NOV, Tarrant acknowledged the violation and indicated that
it had been corrected. On May 24, 2002, the Dallas Office issued
an NAL in the amount of $4,000 to Tarrant for operating station
KZEE(AM) with an antenna input power greater than 105% of the
authorized level in willful and repeated violation of Section
73.1560(a)(1) of the Rules.
7. In its response to the NAL, Tarrant argues that the
forfeiture amount should be reduced. In support of its argument,
Tarrant states that its sole principals had never owned or worked
at a radio station and only assumed ownership of KZEE(AM) on
October 23, 2001. Further, Tarrant suggests that the owners made
no changes to the operation of KZEE(AM) by November 8 and 11, two
weeks later when the Commission received complaints regarding
KZEE(AM)'s operation. Moreover, Tarrant asserts that at the time
of the agent's inspection, the owners had been in control of the
station for only three months and had hardly any time in which to
correct the prior licensee's deficiencies. In addition, Tarrant
states that KZEE(AM) was time brokered from the end of October
until the end of January 2002. As a result, argues Tarrant,
although Tarrant was licensee of Station KZEE(AM), the owners
were ``complete innocents.'' Tarrant acknowledges that there
were repeated violations, but contends that had the licensee been
notified of the violations after the January 9th inspection, the
violations would have ceased then. Finally, Tarrant argues that
the forfeiture should be reduced on the basis of the licensee's
history of overall compliance.
8. The forfeiture amount in this case was assessed in
accordance with Section 503(b) of the Communications Act of 1934,
as amended, (``Act'')2 Section 1.80 of the Rules,3 and The
Commission's Forfeiture Policy Statement and Amendment of Section
1.80 of the Rules to Incorporate the Forfeiture Guidelines, 12
FCC Rcd 17087 (1997), recon. denied, 15 FCC Rcd 303 (1999). In
examining Tarrant's response, Section 503(b) of the Act requires
that the Commission take into account 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
9. We disagree that the forfeiture amount should be
reduced because the licensee had been in control of the station
for a short period of time at the time of the inspection.
Tarrant's period of ownership does not provide a basis for
reduction of the forfeiture amount as the licensee is responsible
for ensuring compliance with our rules.5 We also reject the
licensee's argument that the repeated nature of the violation
could have been avoided by earlier notice. Tarrant had an
obligation to ensure that it was in compliance with the
Commission's rules. In any event, the NAL did not increase the
$4,000 base amount on the grounds that the violation occurred on
two separate days. Finally, Tarrant argues that we should
consider its history of overall compliance with the Rules. We
will do so and reduce the $4,000 forfeiture to $3,000.
IV. ORDERING CLAUSES
10. Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED that, pursuant to Section
503(b) of the Act, and Sections 0.111, 0.311 and 1.80(f)(4) of
the Rules,6 Tarrant Radio Broadcasting, Inc. IS LIABLE FOR A
MONETARY FORFEITURE in the amount of three thousand dollars
($3,000) for operating Station KZEE(AM) with an antenna input
power at a level more than 105% of authorized power in willful
and repeated violation of Section 73.1560(a)(1) of the Rules.
11. Payment of the forfeiture shall be made in the manner
provided for in Section 1.80 of the Rules within 30 days of the
release of this Order. If the forfeiture is not paid within the
period specified, the case may be referred to the Department of
Justice for collection pursuant to Section 504(a) of the Act.7
Payment shall be made by mailing a check or similar instrument,
payable to the order of the Federal Communications Commission, to
the Federal Communications Commission, P.O. Box 73482, Chicago,
Illinois 60673-7482. The payment should note NAL/Acct. No.
200232500003 and FRN 0006-7721-56. Requests for full payment
under an installment plan should be sent to: Chief, Revenue and
Receivables Operations Group, 445 12th Street, S.W., Washington,
12. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that, a copy of this Order shall
be sent by Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested, to Tarrant
Radio Broadcasting, Inc. at P.O. Box 92903, Southlake, TX 76092,
and to its counsel, Allan G. Moskowitz, Esq., Kaye Sholer LLP,
The McPherson Building, 901 Fifteenth Street, N.W., Washington,
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
David H. Solomon
Chief, Enforcement Bureau
1 47 C.F.R. § 73.1560(a)(1).
2 47 U.S.C. § 503(b).
3 47 C.F.R. § 1.80.
4 47 U.S.C. § 503(b)(2)(D).
5 Sitka Broadcasting Co., Inc., 70 FCC 2d 2375, 2378 (1979).
6 47 C.F.R. §§ 0.111, 0.311, 1.80(f)(4).
7 47 U.S.C. § 504(a).
8 See 47 C.F.R. § 1.1914.