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Federal Communications Commission
Washington, D.C. 20554
In the Matter of )
William A. Woods ) File No. EB-02-ST-244
Tacoma, Washington ) NAL/Acct. No. 200332980003
) FRN 0007-9944-78
Adopted: September 15, 2003 Released: September 17,
By the Chief, Enforcement Bureau:
1. In this Forfeiture Order (``Order''), we issue a
monetary forfeiture in the amount of five hundred dollars
($500) to William A. Woods, Tacoma, Washington, for willful
violation of Section 303(n) of the Communications Act of 1934,
as amended, (``Act'') and Section 95.426 of the Commission's
Rules (``Rules'').1 The noted violations involve Mr. Woods'
failure to make his CB radio station available for inspection
at the request of authorized Commission personnel.
2. On December 30, 2002, the Commission's Seattle,
Washington, Field Office (``Seattle Office'') issued a Notice
of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture (``NAL'') to Mr. Woods
for a forfeiture in the amount of seven thousand dollars
($7,000).2 Mr. Woods responded to the NAL on February 10,
3. On September 3, 2002, the Seattle Office received a
report from the City of Tacoma, Washington, concerning
complaints about interference to home entertainment equipment
in the 3000 block of South Madison Street in Tacoma,
4. On October 29, 2002, FCC agents from the Seattle
Office, using mobile direction finding equipment, determined
that an interfering signal on CB frequency 27.025 MHz was
emanating from the residence of William A. Woods at 3005 S.
Madison Street, Tacoma, Washington. The agents observed
signal strength levels significantly higher than those
expected from an authorized CB transmitter.
5. On November 5, 2002, the agents again observed
transmissions on 27.025 MHz with signal strength levels
significantly exceeding those expected from an authorized CB
transmitter. Using mobile direction finding equipment, they
again determined that the transmissions emanated from Woods'
residence. After locating the source of the transmissions on
November 5, 2002, the agents, who were accompanied by two
police officers, requested that Mr. Woods make his CB station
available for inspection. After a delay, Mr. Woods allowed
the agents but not the police officers to enter his residence.
Once the agents began an inspection of Mr. Woods' CB station,
Mr. Woods changed his mind and refused to allow the inspection
to continue. The agents then informed Mr. Woods that his
refusal to allow an inspection could result in a monetary
6. On December 30, 2002, the Seattle Office issued a NAL
for a $7,000 forfeiture to William A. Woods for refusing to
allow an inspection of his CB radio station, in willful
violation of Section 303(n) of the Act and Section 95.426 of
the Rules.3 In his response to the NAL, Mr. Woods claims that
the agents who came to his residence on November 5, 2002, did
not present any identification and that he did not refuse to
allow the agents to inspect his station. In addition, Mr.
Woods submitted financial documentation concerning his
inability to pay the proposed monetary forfeiture and also
stated that he had taken medication before the agents arrived
at his house.
7. The proposed forfeiture amount in this case was
assessed in accordance with Section 503(b) of the Act,4
Section 1.80 of the Rules,5 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) (``Policy
Statement''). In examining Mr. Woods' 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.6
8. Section 303(n) of the Act authorizes the Commission to
inspect radio stations and Section 95.426 of the Rules
requires CB operators to make their stations available for
inspection upon the request of Commission personnel. The
agents who attempted to inspect Mr. Woods' station flatly
contradict his claims that they did not present any
identification and that Mr. Woods did not refuse to allow the
inspection. The agents state that they presented
identification indicating that they are FCC agents and that,
after allowing the inspection to begin, Mr. Woods became
extremely agitated and then told the agents that they could
not continue with the inspection. We conclude that Mr. Woods
violated Sections 303(n) of the Act and 95.426 of the Rules by
refusing to make his CB radio station available for
inspection. We also conclude these violations were
``willful'' within the meaning of Section 503(b) of the Act.7
9. Mr. Woods claims to have taken the medication
``Olanzapine'' before the arrival of FCC agents at his house
on May 8, 2002. Mr. Woods does not contend that this
medication contributed to his refusal to permit an inspection;
indeed, he flatly denies refusing to permit an inspection.
Furthermore, it is unclear from the information provided
whether this medication would have any affect on Mr. Woods'
actions or state of mind.
10. Upon review of the financial documentation presented by
Mr. Woods, we conclude that the forfeiture amount should be
reduced to $500 on the basis of financial hardship.
11. Mr. Woods presented several additional arguments in
his response to the NAL, such as his claim that he did not
operate his station on October 29, 2002, and his attempts to
discredit the complainants. These additional arguments have
no bearing upon the matters at issue in this proceeding:
whether Mr. Woods failed to allow a station inspection, in
violation of Section 303(n) of the Act and Section 95.426 of
the Rules; whether a forfeiture should be imposed for those
violations; and the amount of any such forfeiture.
Accordingly, we find that these additional arguments are not
material to this proceeding and we will not consider them.
12. We have examined the response to the NAL pursuant to
the statutory factors above, and in conjunction with the
Policy Statement as well. As a result of our review, we
conclude that Mr. Woods willfully violated Section 303(n) of
the Act and Section 95.426 of the Rules and we find that,
while there is no basis for cancellation of the proposed
monetary forfeiture, a reduction to $500 is warranted on the
basis of financial hardship.
IV. ORDERING CLAUSES
13. Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED that, pursuant to Section
503 of the Act, and Sections 0.111, 0.311 and 1.80(f)(4) of
the Rules,8 William A. Woods IS LIABLE FOR A MONETARY
FORFEITURE in the amount of five hundred dollars ($500) for
willful violation of Section 303(n) of the Act and Section
95.426 of the Rules.
14. 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.9 Payment may 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 reference NAL/Acct. No. 200332980003 and FRN
0007-9944-78. Requests for full payment under an installment
plan should be sent to: Chief, Revenue and Receivables
Operations Group, 445 12th Street, S.W., Washington, D.C.
15. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that a copy of this Order shall
be sent by first class mail and certified mail, return receipt
requested, to William. A. Woods, 3005 S. Madison Street,
Tacoma, Washington 98409.
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
David H. Solomon
Chief, Enforcement Bureau
1 47 C.F.R. § 95.426.
2 Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, NAL/Acct. No.
200332980003 (Enf. Bur., Seattle Office, released December 30,
3 Under Section 1.80(b)(4) of the Rules, $7,000 is the base
forfeiture amount for failure to permit an inspection. 47 C.F.R.
§ 1.80(b)(4), Note to Paragraph (b)(4): Section I.¾Base Amounts
for Section 503 Forfeitures.
4 47 U.S.C. § 503(b).
5 47 C.F.R. § 1.80.
6 47 U.S.C. § 503(b)(2)(D).
7 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,' ... 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).
8 47 C.F.R. §§ 0.111, 0.311, 1.80(f)(4).
9 47 U.S.C. § 504(a).
10 See 47 C.F.R. § 1.1914.