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Federal Communications Commission
Washington, D.C. 20554
In the Matter of )
Gold Coast Broadcasting Company ) File Number EB-02-LA-091
Santa Monica, California ) NAL/Acct. No. 200232900003
) FRN 0007-0166-52
Antenna Structure Registration )
No. 1019626 )
Adopted: April 29, 2003 Released: May 1, 2003
By the Chief, Enforcement Bureau:
1. In this Forfeiture Order (``Order''), we issue a
monetary forfeiture in the amount of ten thousand dollars
($10,000) to Gold Coast Broadcasting Company (``Gold Coast''),
the registered owner of Antenna Structure Registration (``ASR'')
number 1019626 in Ventura, California for willful violation of
Section 17.50 of the Commission's Rules (``Rules'').1 The noted
violation involves Gold Coast's failure to maintain specified
painting on its antenna structure.
2. On June 25, 2002, the Commission's Los Angeles,
California Field Office (``Los Angeles Office'') issued a Notice
of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture (``NAL'') in the amount of
ten thousand dollars ($10,000) to Gold Coast for the noted
violation.2 Gold Coast filed a response to the NAL on July 25,
3. On February 14, 2002, agents from the Los Angeles
Office inspected the four tower array for Gold Coast Station
KUNX(AM) in Ventura, California. The agents observed that the
required painting on the #1 North antenna structure, ASR number
1019626, was faded and oxidized such that it failed to maintain
4. On March 6, 2002, the Los Angeles Office issued a
Notice of Violation (``NOV'') to Gold Coast for failure to
maintain the required antenna structure painting. On March 19,
2002, Gold Coast submitted a response to the NOV stating that, in
response to the NOV, it had hired an antenna structure contractor
to repaint the tower. Gold Coast also stated that work was
scheduled to begin on March 20, 2002, and anticipated that the
painting would be finished by March 22, 2002. On March 21, 2002,
Gold Coast submitted a letter stating that while the work began
as scheduled, it was taking longer than anticipated. Gold Coast
indicated that the repainting would be finished on March 23,
2002. On March 26, 2002, Gold Coast reported that the repainting
of ASR number 1019626 would be completed on March 30, 2002. On
June 25, 2002, the Los Angeles Office issued an NAL to Gold Coast
in the amount of $10,000 for failure to clean or repaint its
antenna structure as often as necessary to maintain good
visibility in willful violation of Section 17.50 of the Rules.
In its response to the NAL, Gold Coast requests elimination or
reduction of the proposed forfeiture amount. Specifically, Gold
Coast argues that it had already taken steps to correct the
problem when the tower was inspected by the agents, that it
corrected the problem quickly, and that it has acted in good
faith. Further, Gold Coast states that its tower is only 95.5
meters and is ``relatively short'' and is well lit at two levels.
Gold Coast also claims that its tower is located in the midst of
three other towers, and consequently, its tower is part of a
visible large array. Next, Gold Coast asserts that the
oxidization of the paint did not pose any ``real world risk.''
Finally, Gold Coast contends that KUNX(AM) is a small market AM
station using a Spanish news and talk format to provide ``an
important new radio service,'' and that the proposed forfeiture
amount would result in a financial burden for the station.
5. The forfeiture amount in this case was assessed in
accordance with Section 503(b) of the Communications Act of 1934,
as amended, (``Act'')3 Section 1.80 of the Rules,4 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 Gold Coast'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 require.5
6. We disagree that the proposed forfeiture amount should
be rescinded or reduced on the basis of good faith. Gold Coast's
NOV indicates that, after receipt of the NOV, it hired an antenna
structure contractor to re-paint the tower. In its response to
the NAL, Gold Coast indicates that it was having discussions with
contractors on repainting its tower prior to Gold Coast's receipt
of the NOV. However, we do not believe that merely having
discussions with contractors regarding the repainting of the
tower prior to the agent's inspection warrants a reduction of the
forfeiture amount on the basis of good faith.
7. Moreover, Gold Coast's remedial efforts to correct the
violation, after the violation was discovered by the Commission,
while commendable, are not a mitigating factor. See Station
KGVL, Inc., 42 FCC 2d 258, 259 (1973). In addition,
notwithstanding the tower's height, lighting, and proximity to
other towers, the licensee is still required to clean or repaint
its tower as often as necessary to maintain good visibility in
compliance with Section 17.50 of the Rules. With respect to Gold
Coast's argument regarding its inability to pay the proposed
forfeiture, we note that it does not submit any financial
documentation from which we can assess its ability to pay.
Therefore, we decline to reduce the forfeiture amount on this
IV. ORDERING CLAUSES
8. 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 Gold Coast Broadcasting Company IS LIABLE FOR A
MONETARY FORFEITURE in the amount of ten thousand dollars
($10,000) for failure to maintain specified painting on its
antenna structure in willful violation of Section 17.50 of the
9. 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.
200232900003 and FRN 0007-0166-52. Requests for full payment
under an installment plan should be sent to: Chief, Revenue and
Receivables Operations Group, 445 12th Street, S.W., Washington,
10. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that, a copy of this Order shall
be sent by Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested, to Gold
Coast Broadcasting Company, 715 Broadway, Suite 320, Santa
Monica, California, 90401.
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
David H. Solomon
Chief, Enforcement Bureau
1 47 C.F.R. § 17.50
2 Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, NAL/Acct. No.
200232900003 (Enf. Bur. Los Angeles Office, released June 25,
3 47 U.S.C. § 503(b).
4 47 C.F.R. § 1.80.
5 47 U.S.C. § 503(b)(2)(D).
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.