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 ) EB-08-AT-0212
Dale Lloyd Allred ) NAL/Acct. No. 200932480001
Tunnel Hill, Georgia ) FRN 0018065417
Adopted: November 14, 2008 Released: November 18, 2008
By the Regional Director, South Central Region, Enforcement Bureau:
1. In this Forfeiture Order ("Order"), we issue a monetary forfeiture in
the amount of one thousand five hundred dollars ($1,500) to Dale Lloyd
Allred of Tunnel Hill, Georgia for willful and repeated violation of
Sections 301 and 333 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended
("Act"). The noted violations involve Mr. Allred's operation of an
unlicensed transmitter on the frequency 157.5675 MHz, in Dalton,
Georgia and interference with licensed radio communications.
2. On August 8, 2008, in response to several complaints of interference
to school bus radio operations from Dalton Communications, Inc.,
licensee with call sign WQFN711 ("Dalton Communications"), agents from
the Commission's Atlanta Office of the Enforcement Bureau ("Atlanta
Office") monitored the frequency 157.5675 MHz in Dalton, Georgia and
observed repeated radio transmissions being transmitted directly on
top of school bus transmissions, often disrupting the school bus radio
transmissions. The agents, using a mobile direction-finding vehicle,
identified the location of the interfering radio transmissions as the
office and radio shop for Tri-County Communications ("TCC Shop").
3. On that same day, the agents from the Atlanta Office conducted an
inspection of radio equipment at the TCC Shop and interviewed TCC
Shop's chief executive officer, Mr. Allred, who admitted that he had
intentionally operated a radio transmitter on 157.5675 MHz to cause
the interference. Mr. Allred also stated that he had transmitted on
157.5675 MHz on other days during the summer months. Mr. Allred
explained that he was interfering with Dalton Communications'
transmissions, because Dalton Communications had taken the school bus
communications contract away from his company. Mr. Allred identified
the handheld Kenwood model transceiver that he used to transmit on
157.5675 MHz, and the agents performed a test transmission verifying
that the unit operated on 157.5675 MHz.
4. According to the manufacturer, Kenwood only manufactures hand-held
transceivers for operation under Parts 90, 97, and 95 of the
Commission's Rules ("Rules"). Accordingly, use of the Kenwood
transceiver to operate on 157.5675 MHz exceeded the limits for
operation under Part 15 of the Rules and therefore required a license.
A search of the Commission's databases revealed no authorization to
operate on 157.5675 MHz from the TCC Shop. Indeed, Dalton
Communications is the only licensee authorized to operate on 157.5675
MHz in Dalton, GA.
5. On October 16, 2008, the Atlanta City Office issued a Notice of
Apparent Liability for Forfeiture to Mr. Allred in the amount of
seventeen thousand dollars ($17,000) for the apparent willful and
repeated violation of Sections 301 and 333 of the Act. Mr. Allred
submitted a response to the NAL requesting cancellation or reduction
of the proposed forfeiture.
6. The proposed forfeiture amount in this case was assessed in accordance
with Section 503(b) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended
("Act'), Section 1.80 of the Rules, 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 Mr. Allred'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.
7. 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 ... except under and in accordance with this Act and
with a license in that behalf granted under the provisions of this
Act." On August 8, 2008, agents from the Atlanta Office, using
direction finding techniques, determined that a transmission on
157.5675 MHz emanated from the TCC Shop in Dalton, GA. The agents
interviewed Mr. Allred, who admitted that he had intentionally
transmitted on that frequency on several days over the course of the
summer. Mr. Allred showed the agents his handheld transceiver, which
was capable of operating on 157.5675 MHz.
8. Section 333 of the Act states that "[n]o person shall willfully or
maliciously interfere with or cause interference to any radio
communications of any station licensed ... under this Act." The
Atlanta Office received several complaints from Dalton Communications
that someone was interfering with its licensed communications on
157.5675 MHz. On August 8, 2008, agents from the Atlanta Office
observed key clicks and DTMF tones disrupting school bus
communications on 157.5675 MHz. On August 8, 2008, agents from the
Atlanta Office determined that the interfering transmissions on
157.5675 were emanating from the TCC Shop in Dalton, GA. On August 8,
2008, Mr. Allred admitted to operating a handheld transceiver on
157.5675 MHz to interfere with Dalton Communications' licensed
transmissions. Mr. Allred stated that he had done so on several days
over the course of the summer.
9. In response to the NAL, Mr. Allred denies that his operation was
intentional or that he maliciously caused interference to the school
bus communications. He claims that his equipment was mounted
incorrectly in his service vehicle which caused the "PTT of the VHF to
mash against the base of the UHF and go into the TX by itself." He
also states that he was intimidated by the police officer who
accompanied the agents during the interview and that he would have
admitted to anything at the time.
10. We do not find Mr. Allred's response to the NAL reliable. Mr. Allred
did not simply respond "yes" or "no" to the agents' questions during
the inspection. Mr. Allred admitted to operating his handheld
transmitter to interfere with Dalton Communications' school bus
communications on several days over the course of the summer and
explained his motivation for causing the interference, frustration at
losing the communications contract to Dalton Communications. We do not
find it likely that Mr. Allred would have fabricated all of the
information that he provided, because he was intimidated by the police
officer present during the interview. In addition, on August 8, 2008,
the agents' observed that the interfering communications ceased when
bus driver communications ceased and did not resume until the driver
discussions resumed. The timing of the interfering communications
indicated that the transmissions were not random or unintentional.
Thus, based on the totality of the circumstances, we will continue to
rely on Mr. Allred's statements from the inspection, as reflected in
the agents' contemporaneous notes. Moreover, Mr. Allred does not
dispute that transmissions on 157.5675 MHz were sent from his handheld
transceiver on more than one day over the course of the summer. Thus,
even assuming arguendo that the transmissions were not willful, he
admitted that his operation was repeated and we need not find his
violation of Section 301 of the Act to be willful to assess a
forfeiture. However, based on the evidence before us, we find that Mr.
Allred willfully and repeatedly violated Sections 301 and 333 of the
Act on August 8, 2008 and on several days throughout the summer by
operating a radio transmitter on 157.5675 MHz without a license and by
interfering with licensed communications.
11. In addition, Mr. Allred asserts that a $17,000 forfeiture would
produce a financial hardship and requests that the forfeiture be
cancelled or significantly reduced. The Commission has determined
that, in general, an entity's gross revenues are the best indicator of
its ability to pay a forfeiture. After reviewing Mr. Allred's
financial documentation, we conclude that a reduction of the
forfeiture to $1,500 would be appropriate.
12. We have examined Mr. Allred's response to the NAL pursuant to the
statutory factors above, and in conjunction with the Forfeiture Policy
Statement. As a result of our review, we conclude that a reduction of
the proposed forfeiture to $1,500 is warranted, based on Mr. Allred's
documented inability to pay.
III. ORDERING CLAUSES
13. Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED that, pursuant to Section 503(b) of the
Communications Act of 1934, as amended, and Sections 0.111, 0.311 and
1.80(f)(4) of the Commission's Rules, Dale Lloyd Allred IS LIABLE FOR
A MONETARY FORFEITURE in the amount of one thousand five hundred
dollars ($1,500) for violations of Sections 301 and 333 of the Act.
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. 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 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.
Mr. Allred will also send electronic notification on the date said
payment is made to SCR-Response@fcc.gov.
15. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that a copy of this Order shall be sent by First
Class and Certified Mail Return Receipt Requested to Dale Lloyd Allred
at his address of record.
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
Dennis P. Carlton
Regional Director, South Central Region
47 U.S.C S:S: 301, 333.
The interfering transmissions were brief microphone key "clicks"
immediately followed by a series of DTMF tones.
Section 15.209 of the Rules provides that non-licensed broadcasting in the
88-216 MHz band is permitted only if the field strength of the
transmission does not exceed 150 mV/m at three meters. 47 C.F.R. S:
15.209. Mr. Allred's transmissions triggered Dalton Communications'
repeater, which was located 3.7 miles away from the TCC Shop. Devices
compliant with Part 15 typically have a range far less than this distance.
Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, NAL/Acct. No. 200932480001
(Enf. Bur., Atlanta Office, October 16, 2008) ("NAL").
47 U.S.C. S: 503(b).
47 C.F.R. S: 1.80.
47 U.S.C. S: 503(b)(2)(E).
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,' ... 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).
As provided by 47 U.S.C. S: 312(f)(2), a continuous violation is
"repeated" if it continues for more than one day. The Conference Report
for Section 312(f)(2) indicates that Congress intended to apply this
definition to Section 503 of the Act as well as Section 312. See H.R. Rep.
97th Cong. 2d Sess. 51 (1982). See Southern California Broadcasting
Company, 6 FCC Rcd 4387, 4388 (1991) and Western Wireless Corporation, 18
FCC Rcd 10319 at fn. 56 (2003).
See PJB Communications of Virginia, Inc., 7 FCC Rcd 2088, 2089 (1992)
(forfeiture not deemed excessive where it represented approximately 2.02
percent of the violator's gross revenues); Local Long Distance, Inc., 16
FCC Rcd 24385 (2000) (forfeiture not deemed excessive where it represented
approximately 7.9 percent of the violator's gross revenues); Hoosier
Broadcasting Corporation, 15 FCC Rcd 8640 (2002) (forfeiture not deemed
excessive where it represented approximately 7.6 percent of the violator's
47 U.S.C. S:S: 301, 333, 503(b); 47 C.F.R. S:S: 0.111, 0.311, 1.80(f)(4).
47 U.S.C. S: 504(a).
(...continued from previous page)
Federal Communications Commission DA 08-2516
Federal Communications Commission DA 08-2516