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                              Before the
                Federal Communications Commission
                     Washington, D.C. 20554


In the Matter of                   )     File Number EB-02-OR-274
                                     )
Metropolitan Radio Group, Inc.     )    NAL/Acct. No.200332620003
Licensee of FM Broadcast Station   )
KTKC located                       )             FRN 0007-0069-84
   in Springhill, Louisiana        )
Springfield, Missouri

 

                        FORFEITURE ORDER

     Adopted:    May 10, 2004           Released:    May 12, 2004        

By the Chief, Enforcement Bureau:

                        I.  INTRODUCTION

     1.   In  this  Forfeiture  Order  (``Order''),  we  issue  a 
monetary forfeiture  in the  amount  of twelve  thousand  dollars 
($12,000), to Metropolitan Radio Group, Inc.  (``Metropolitan''), 
licensee of Station KTKC-FM,  Springhill, Louisiana, for  willful 
violation  of   Sections  73.1125(a)   and  73.3526(b)   of   the 
Commission's Rules  ("Rules").1   The  noted  violations  involve 
Metropolitan's  failure  to  maintain  the  required  staff   and 
management presence at the station's  main studio and failure  to 
maintain all of  the required  material in  the station's  public 
inspection file.

     2.   On November  19, 2002,  the Commission's  New  Orleans, 
Louisiana, Field Office ("New Orleans Office") issued a Notice of 
Apparent Liability  for  Forfeiture  ("NAL")2 in  the  amount  of 
twelve  thousand dollars ($12,000) to Metropolitan.  Metropolitan 
filed its response on December 19, 2002.  





                         II.  BACKGROUND

     3.   On September 10,  2002, an agent  from the New  Orleans 
          Office sought  to inspect  KTKC-FM's main  studio.   He 
          contacted the station's operations manager and said  he 
          needed to go  to the  station's main  studio where  the 
          public file was  located and the  station maintained  a 
          presence to deal with the public.  KTKC-FM's operations 
          manager  informed  the  agent  during  that   telephone 
          conversation that KTKC-FM's main studio was located  at 
          924 Plain Dealing Road, Springhill, Louisiana, and that 
          the studio at  that location  was presently  unoccupied 
          but he could meet  the agent there  in 20 minutes.   In 
          response to  the agent's  question regarding  where  he 
          was, the operations manager stated  that he was at  541 
          S. Main Street.  The agent stated directly to KTKC-FM's 
          operations  manager  that  he  needed  to  inspect  the 
          station's main studio.    The operations manager  again 
          stated that the  location of  the main  studio was  924 
          Plain Dealing Road.  The  agent proceeded to 924  Plain 
          Dealing Road to  inspect the  main studio  and met  the 
          operations manager there.   During the inspection,  the 
          operations manager  told  the agent  that  Metropolitan 
          maintained no staff presence at 924 Plain Dealing  Road 
          and that KTKC-FM staff visited that location twice each 
          day to  take  transmitter meter  readings.   The  agent 
          again asked the operations manager whether the facility 
          located at 541 S.  Main Street, Springhill,  Louisiana, 
          could be  considered  KTKC-FM's  main  studio  and  the 
          operations manager stated  unequivocally that it  could 
          not  be   considered   KTKC-FM's  main   studio.    The 
          operations manager further stated that KTKC-FM's public 
          file was not  maintained at 541  S. Main Street.   When 
          asked about the  lack of  staff presence  at 924  Plain 
          Dealing Road, the operations manager responded that, if 
          he received a telephone call  from a person who  wanted 
          to visit  KTKC-FM's  main  studio,  he  would  make  an 
          appointment to  meet the  person at  924 Plain  Dealing 
          Road.  An inspection of the station's public inspection 
          file, located at 924 Plain Dealing Road, revealed  that 
          it was missing much of the required material  including 
          the  most  recent  ownership  report,  the  Public  and 
          Broadcasting Manual,  letters  and  comments  from  the 
          public, and the Issues and Programs Lists.

     4.   On November 19, 2002, the New Orleans Office issued the 
          NAL in the amount of twelve  thousand dollars ($12,000) 
          to Metropolitan.   Metropolitan filed  its response  on 
          December 19,  2002.   In  that  response,  Metropolitan 
          seeks  cancellation  or   reduction  of  the   proposed 
          forfeiture.  Metropolitan now asserts that on September 
          10, 2002, KTKC-FM was in the process of moving from 924 
          Plan Dealing Road to 541 S. Main Street when the  agent 
          inspected the  station.  Further,  Metropolitan  states 
          that KTKC-FM's main studio was  located at 541 S.  Main 
          Street, Springhill, Louisiana,  that it maintained  the 
          required staff  and  management presence  at  the  main 
          studio, and that it maintained a nearly complete public 
          file at 541 S. Main Street.  In addition,  Metropolitan 
          argues that,  if a  forfeiture is  imposed, the  amount 
          should be reduced because of the ``inconsequentiality'' 
          of the offense.

                           III. DISCUSSION
 
          5.   The proposed 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)  (``Forfeiture  Policy  Statement'').   In  examining 
Metropolitan'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  such other matters as justice  may 
require.5

          6.   Section 73.1125(a)  of  the  Rules  requires  that 
every broadcast station licensee maintain  a main studio for  the 
station. To serve the needs and interests of the residents of the 
station's community  of license,  the  licensee must  maintain  a 
full-time staff and  managerial presence  during normal  business 
hours.6  Metropolitan now claims that, on September 10, 2002, its 
main studio  was  located  at 541  S.  Main  Street,  Springhill, 
Louisiana, where it maintained the required staff and  management 
presence.  On September 10,  2002, however, KTKC-FM's  operations 
manager identified 924 Plain Dealing Road, Springhill, Louisiana, 
as the location of KTKC-FM's main studio and repeatedly stated to 
the agent that the  location at 541 S.  Main Street did not  meet 
the FCC's requirements for a main studio location.  Based on  the 
operations  manager's  contemporaneous  statements,  we  conclude 
that, on September 10, 2002, KTKC-FM's main studio was located at 
924 Plain Dealing Road, Springhill, Louisiana.  It is  undisputed 
that there  was no  staff  or managerial  presence at  924  Plain 
Dealing  Road  on  that  date.   Accordingly  we  conclude   that 
Metropolitan had  no staff  or managerial  presence at  KTKC-FM's 
main studio  on  September 10,  2002,  in willful7  violation  of 
Section 73.1125(a) of the Rules.

          7.   Section   73.3526(b)   of   the   Rules   requires 
commercial broadcast  stations to  maintain a  public  inspection 
file at the main  studio of the station.   It is undisputed  that 
the public file available at 924 Plain Dealing Road,  Springhill, 
Louisiana, during the  inspection of that  facility on  September 
10, 2002, was missing much of the required material including the 
most recent ownership report, the Public and Broadcasting Manual, 
letters and comments from the public, and the Issues and Programs 
Lists.  We conclude that Metropolitan did not maintain a complete 
public inspection  file  at  KTKC-FM's main  studio,  in  willful 
violation of Section 73.3526(b) of the Rules. 

          8.   No reduction of  the proposed monetary  forfeiture 
is warranted  on the  basis that  Metropolitan's violations  were 
``inconsequential.''  Metropolitan's lack of staff and managerial 
presence at its main studio  and its incomplete public file  were 
significant violations.

     9.   We have  examined Metropolitan's  response to  the  NAL 
pursuant to the statutory factors above, and in conjunction  with 
the Forfeiture  Policy Statement  as well.   As a  result of  our 
review, we conclude that Metropolitan willfully violated Sections 
73.1125(a)  and  73.3526(b)  of   the  Rules  and  that   neither 
cancellation  nor  reduction  of the  proposed  $12,000  monetary 
forfeiture is warranted.


  
                      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,8 Metropolitan  Radio,  Inc.,  IS  LIABLE  FOR  A  MONETARY 
FORFEITURE in the amount of twelve thousand dollars (12,000)  for 
willfully violating  Sections 73.1125(a)  and 73.3526(b)  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.9  
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.  200332620003,  and  FRN  0007-0069-84.   Requests  for  full 
payment under  an  installment plan  should  be sent  to:  Chief, 
Revenue and Receivables Group, 445 12th Street, S.W., Washington, 
D.C. 20554.10
     
     12.  IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that, a copy of this Order  shall 
be sent by Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested, and by First 
Class Mail  to Metropolitan  Radio Group,  Inc., Mark  L.  Acker, 
President, 318 East Pershing Street, Springfield, Missouri 65806.

                         FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
                    

                                                                  
                         David H. Solomon
                                                                 
Chief, Enforcement Bureau
           









_________________________

  1    47 C.F.R.   73.1125(a)(a) , 73.3526(b).

  2   Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, NAL/Acct.  No. 
200332620003 (Enf. Bur.,  New Orleans  Office, released  November 
19, 2002).



  3   47 U.S.C.  503(b).

  4   47 C.F.R.  1.80.

  5   47 U.S.C.  503(b)(2)(D).

  6   Jones Eastern  of the Outer  Banks, Inc., 6  FCC Rcd  3615, 
3616 and n.2 (1992), clarified, 7 FCC Rcd 6800 (1992).

  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.