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Federal Communications Commission
Washington, D.C. 20554
In the Matter of
Caribevision Station Group,
L.L.C. ) File Number: EB-09-MA-0216
Licensee of Station WFUN-LD ) NAL/Acct. Number: 201032600002
Miami, FL ) FRN: 0015739246
Facility ID Number: 60542 )
NOTICE OF APPARENT LIABILITY FOR FORFEITURE
Adopted: May 6, 2010 Released: May 10, 2010
By the Resident Agent, Miami Office, South Central Region, Enforcement
1. In this Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture ("NAL"), we find
that Caribevision Station Group, L.L.C. ("Caribevision"), licensee of
station WFUN-LD, in Miami, FL, apparently willfully and repeatedly
violated Section 11.35(a) of the Commission's Rules ("Rules") by
failing to install operational Emergency Alert Systems ("EAS")
equipment and apparently willfully violated Section 74.735(b)(2) of
the Rules by exceeding the maximum effective radiated power ("ERP")
for a digital low power television ("LPTV") station. We conclude,
pursuant to Section 503(b) of the Communications Act of 1934, as
amended ("Act"), that Caribevision is apparently liable for a
forfeiture in the amount of twelve thousand dollars ($12,000).
2. On December 18, 2009, the Enforcement Bureau's Miami Office ("Miami
Office") received a complaint alleging that WFUN-LD was exceeding its
authorized power as stated on the
3. On January 7, 2010, agents from the Miami Office, accompanied by the
station's chief engineer and other station staff, conducted an
inspection of the main studio of WFUN-LD. The agents observed during
the course of this inspection that station WFUN-LD did not have an EAS
decoder. The chief engineer stated that the station had not installed
an EAS decoder since its main studio moved to the current facility in
4. Also on January 7, 2010, the agents, accompanied by the station's
transmitter technician, conducted an inspection of the transmitter
site for WFUN-LD. The transmitter power output ("TPO") on the
station's license was listed at 498 W or .498 kW with an ERP of 15 kW.
The agents observed that the TPO was set at 3.565 kW, which meant the
station was transmitting with an ERP of 41 kW. The transmitter
technician adjusted the TPO to .498 kW at that time, thereby
demonstrating that the equipment was operational.
5. On January 8, 2010, an agent from the Miami Office spoke to an
attorney representing the licensee concerning the transmitter power
output for WFUN-LD. The attorney stated that the WFUN-LD license was
incorrect and provided the agent engineering data for the station. The
engineering data indicated that the station should operate at a TPO of
1.34 kW to achieve an ERP of 15 kW. Therefore, the station still
exceeded the maximum ERP of 15 kW when the agents conducted the
inspection of the transmitter site. Caribevision subsequently applied
for, and was granted, a modification to its license to reflect the
correction in TPO from 498 W to 1.34 kW.
6. Section 503(b) of the Act provides that any person who willfully or
repeatedly fails to comply substantially with the terms and conditions
of any license, or willfully or repeatedly fails to comply with any of
the provisions of the Act or of any rule, regulation or order issued
by the Commission thereunder, shall be liable for a forfeiture
penalty. The term "willful" as used in Section 503(b) of the Act has
been interpreted to mean simply that the acts or omissions are
committed knowingly. The term "repeated" means the commission or
omission of such act more than once or for more than one day.
7. Every broadcast station is part of the nationwide EAS network and is
categorized as a participating national EAS source unless the station
affirmatively requests authority to refrain from participation, and
that request is approved by the Commission. The EAS enables the
President and state and local governments to provide immediate and
emergency communications and information to the general public. State
and local area plans identify local primary sources responsible for
coordinating carriage of common emergency messages from sources such
as the National Weather Service or local emergency management
officials. Required monthly and weekly tests originate from EAS Local
or State Primary sources and must be retransmitted by the
participating station. As the nation's emergency warning system, the
Emergency Alert System is critical to public safety, and we recognize
the vital role that broadcasters play in ensuring its success. The
Commission takes seriously any violations of the Rules implementing
the EAS and expects full compliance from its licensees.
8. Section 11.11(a) of the Rules require digital LPTV stations to have an
EAS decoder. Section 11.35(a) of the Rules require broadcast stations
to maintain operational EAS encoders, decoders and attention signal
generating equipment and receiving equipment so that monitoring and
transmitting functions are available during times the stations are in
operation.. During the inspection of WFUN-LD's main studio on January
7, 2010, agents from the Miami Office observed that the station had
not installed an EAS decoder. The station's chief engineer stated that
the station never installed an EAS decoder at its current facility.
Therefore, we find that Caribevision apparently willfully and
repeatedly violated Section 11.35(a) of the Rules by failing to
install an EAS decoder at the station's main studio.
9. Section 74.735(b)(2) of the Rules states that the maximum ERP of a
digital low power TV, TV translator, or TV booster station shall not
exceed 15 kW for UHF channels 14-69. Station WFUN-LD is assigned UHF
channel 48. According to the station's corrected license, to comply
with the 15 kW maximum ERP, its TPO may not exceed 1.34 kW. During the
inspection of WFUN-LD's transmitter site on January 7, 2010, agents
from the Miami Office observed the TPO of the transmitter to be 3.565
kW, which means the station was operating with an ERP of approximately
41kW. The transmitter appeared to be functioning properly, as
Caribevision was able to reduce the TPO during the inspection.
Therefore, on January 7, 2010, the station exceeded the maximum TPO
and maximum ERP. Based on the evidence before us, we find that
Caribevision apparently willfully violated Section 74.735(b)(2) of the
Rules by exceeding the maximum ERP for a digital LPTV station.
10. Pursuant to The Commission's Forfeiture Policy Statement and Amendment
of Section 1.80 of the Rules to Incorporate the Forfeiture Guidelines,
("Forfeiture Policy Statement"), and Section 1.80 of the Rules, the
base forfeiture amount for failing to have EAS equipment installed is
$8,000 and the base forfeiture amount for exceeding power limits is
$4,000. In assessing the monetary forfeiture amount, we must also take
into account the statutory factors set forth in Section 503(b)(2)(E)
of the Act, which include the nature, circumstances, extent, and
gravity of the violations, and with respect to the violator, the
degree of culpability, and history of prior offenses, ability to pay,
and other such matters as justice may require. Applying the Forfeiture
Policy Statement, Section 1.80 of the Rules, and the statutory factors
to the instant case, we conclude that Caribevision is apparently
liable for a $12,000 forfeiture.
IV. ORDERING CLAUSES
11. Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED that, pursuant to Section 503(b) of the
Communications Act of 1934, as amended, and Sections 0.111, 0.311,
0.314 and 1.80 of the Commission's Rules, Caribevision Station Group,
L.L.C. is hereby NOTIFIED of this APPARENT LIABILITY FOR A FORFEITURE
in the amount of twelve thousand dollars ($12,000) for violations of
Sections 11.35(a) and 74.735(b)(2) of the Rules.
12. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that, pursuant to Section 1.80 of the
Commission's Rules within thirty days of the release date of this
Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, Caribevision Station
Group, L.L.C. SHALL PAY the full amount of the proposed forfeiture or
SHALL FILE a written statement seeking reduction or cancellation of
the proposed forfeiture.
13. Payment of the forfeiture must be made by credit card, check or
similar instrument, payable to the order of the Federal Communications
Commission. The payment must include the 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. 20554.8 If you have questions, please contact the
Financial Operations Group Help Desk at 1-877-480-3201 or Email:
ARINQUIRIES@fcc.gov. If payment is made, Caribevision will send
electronic notification on the date said payment is made to
14. The response, if any, must be mailed to Federal Communications
Commission, Enforcement Bureau, South Central Region, Miami Office,
P.O. Box 520617, Miami, FL 33152 and must include the NAL/Acct. No.
referenced in the caption.
15. The Commission will not consider reducing or canceling a forfeiture in
response to a claim of inability to pay unless the petitioner submits:
(1) federal tax returns for the most recent three-year period; (2)
financial statements prepared according to generally accepted
accounting practices ("GAAP"); or (3) some other reliable and
objective documentation that accurately reflects the petitioner's
current financial status. Any claim of inability to pay must
specifically identify the basis for the claim by reference to the
financial documentation submitted.
16. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that a copy of this Notice of Apparent Liability
for Forfeiture shall be sent by Certified Mail, Return Receipt
Requested, and regular mail, to Caribevision Station Group, L.L.C. at
its address of record.
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
South Central Region
47 C.F.R. S:S: 11.35(a), 74.735(b)(2).
47 U.S.C. S: 503(b).
This estimate utilizes engineering data provided by the licensee, an
antenna gain of 13.75 dBd, and a line efficiency of 47.28%.
See Station Authorization for WFUN-LP, BLDTL-20090615ADJ.
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', when used with reference to the
commission or omission of any act, 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).
Section 312(f)(2) of the Act, 47 U.S.C. S: 312(f)(2), which also applies
to violations for which forfeitures are assessed under Section 503(b) of
the Act, provides that "[t]he term `repeated', when used with reference to
the commission or omission of any act, means the commission or omission of
such act more than once or, if such commission or omission is continuous,
for more than one day."
47 C.F.R. S:S: 11.11, 11.41.
47 C.F.R. S:S: 11.1, 11.21.
47 C.F.R. S: 11.18. State EAS plans contain guidelines that must be
followed by broadcast and cable personnel, emergency officials and
National Weather Service personnel to activate the EAS for state and local
emergency alerts. The state plans include the EAS header codes and
messages to be transmitted by the primary state, local and relay EAS
47 C.F.R. S: 11.11(a).
47 C.F.R. S: 11.35(a).
47 C.F.R. S: 74.735(b)(2).
See Station Authorization for WFUN-LP, BLDTL-20090615ADJ.
12 FCC Rcd 17087 (1997), recon. denied, 15 FCC Rcd 303 (1999); 47 C.F.R.
47 U.S.C. S: 503(b)(2)(E).
47 U.S.C. S: 503(b); 47 C.F.R. S:S: 0.111, 0.311, 0.314, 1.80, 11.35(a),
8 See 47 C.F.R. S: 1.1914.
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Federal Communications Commission DA 10-782
Federal Communications Commission DA 10-782