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Federal Communications Commission
Washington, D.C. 20554
In the Matter of )
World Media Broadcast Company ) File Number: EB-10-NF-0003
Licensee of Station WCLM (AM) ) NAL/Acct. No.: 201032640002
Highland Springs, Virginia ) FRN: 5016308
Facility ID # 73728 )
NOTICE OF APPARENT LIABILITY FOR FORFEITURE
Adopted: May 6, 2010 Released: May 10, 2010
By the Resident Agent, Norfolk Office, South Central Region, Enforcement
1. In this Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture ("NAL"), we find
that World Media Broadcast Company, ("World Media"), licensee of
station WCLM(AM), in Highland Springs, Virginia, apparently willfully
and repeatedly violated Sections 11.35(a), 73.1400(a)(1)(ii) and
73.3526 of the Commission's Rules ("Rules") by failing to maintain
functioning Emergency Alert System ("EAS") equipment, failing to
provide functioning transmission system remote control equipment, and
failing to maintain and make available a public inspection file. We
conclude, pursuant to Section 503(b) of the Communications Act of
1934, as amended ("Act"), that World Media is apparently liable for a
forfeiture in the amount of twenty-one thousand dollars ($21,000).
2. On January 26, 2010, in response to a complaint, an agent of the
Commission's Norfolk Office of the Enforcement Bureau ("Norfolk
Office") inspected the main studio for station WCLM in Richmond,
Virginia. The agent observed that the station was without a
functioning EAS system. WCLM's station manager and the station's
"technical representative" stated that they believed the EAS
encoder/decoder unit had been removed for repairs, but there were no
logs to confirm the equipment removal. The agent observed, however,
that the EAS unit was actually installed at the main studio but was
not connected to the transmission system. Neither the station manager
nor the "technical representative" was able to send an EAS test over
the air, or knew when the EAS was last operational, or when the last
EAS test was sent. There were no station logs at the main studio or
records of any kind that showed that any required weekly or monthly
EAS tests had ever been sent or received. Additionally, in response to
the agent's request for inspection during normal business hours, World
Media was unable to produce its public inspection file or any of the
required contents of the file. WCLM's station manager stated that the
public inspection file was kept at World Media's headquarters in
3. Also on January 26, 2010, during the inspection of the station's
transmitter site, the agent observed that the transmitter's DC plate
meter was apparently defective, as it read zero when the antenna base
current meter indicated 3.8 amps at the base of the antenna. The agent
also observed that World Media was unable to control the remote
transmitter operation from the main studio because of an inoperative
remote control system. World Media's "technical representative" stated
that he was aware that the remote control unit was inoperative as a
result of being struck by lightning sometime in November 2009. The
"technical representative" stated that he was unable to repair the
remote control equipment and planned to suggest that World Media
purchase a new unit.
4. 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.
5. 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.
6. Section 11.35(a) of the Rules requires all broadcast stations to
ensure that EAS encoders, EAS decoders, and attention signal
generating and receiving equipment are installed and operational so
that the monitoring and transmitting functions are available during
the times the station is in operation. During the January 26, 2010
inspection, the agent observed that the WCLM(AM) EAS encoder/decoder
unit was, in fact, installed at the main studio but was not
operational. Both the station manager and the "technical
representative" admitted that neither of them knew that an EAS
Encoder/Decoder unit was installed at the main studio or when the last
EAS test was sent. In addition, World Media was unable to produce any
evidence that required EAS weekly or monthly tests had ever been sent
or received. Therefore, we find that World Media apparently willfully
and repeatedly violated Section 11.35(a) of the Rules by failing to
ensure that EAS equipment was installed and operational when the
station was in operation.
7. Section 73.1400(a)(1)(ii) of the Rules states that if a remote control
system of the transmission system is used, the "remote control system
must provide sufficient transmission system monitoring and control
capability so as to ensure compliance with S:73.1350." On January 26,
2010, the installed transmitter dial-up remote control system at the
WCLM transmitter site was inoperative. According to the station
manager and "technical representative", the transmitter remote control
unit was "hit by lightning" sometime in November 2009 and had not
subsequently been repaired or replaced. Therefore, we find that World
Media apparently willfully and repeatedly violated Section
73.1400(a)(1)(ii) of the Rules by operating a remote transmitter from
the main studio without functional remote control equipment.
8. Section 73.3526(a)(2) of the Rules states that "[e]very permittee or
licensee of an AM, FM, TV or a Class A station in the commercial
broadcast services shall maintain a public inspection file containing
the material" set forth in this section. The public inspection file
must be maintained at the main studio of the station, and must be
available for public inspection at any time during regular business
hours. An agent from the Norfolk Office requested to inspect station
WCLM's public inspection file during regular business hours on January
26, 2010. The station manager was unable to make its public inspection
file or any of the required contents of the file available for
inspection. He stated that WCLM's public inspection file is maintained
at World Media's headquarters in Washington, DC. Based on the evidence
before us, we find that World Media apparently willfully and
repeatedly violated Section 73.3526 of the Rules by failing to
maintain a public inspection file. We also find that World Media
apparently willfully violated Section 73.3526 of the Rules by failing
to make available a public inspection file.
9. 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 amounts for not having operational EAS equipment
installed, violation of transmitter control and metering requirements,
and violation of public file rules are, respectively, $8,000, $3,000
and $10,000. 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 World
Media is apparently liable for $21,000 forfeiture.
IV. ORDERING CLAUSES
10. 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, World Media Broadcast
Company is hereby NOTIFIED of this APPARENT LIABILITY FOR A FORFEITURE
in the amount of twenty-one thousand dollars ($21,000) for violations
of Sections 11.35(a), 73.1400(a)(1)(ii) and 73.3526 of the Rules.
11. 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, World Media Broadcast
Company, SHALL PAY the full amount of the proposed forfeiture or SHALL
FILE a written statement seeking reduction or cancellation of the
12. 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 Federal Reserve Bank of New York, 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. 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,
World Media Broadcast Company will send electronic notification on the
date said payment is made to SCR-Response@fcc.gov.
13. The response, if any, must be mailed to Federal Communications
Commission, Enforcement Bureau, South Central Region, Norfolk Office
1457 Mount Pleasant Rd, Suite 113, Chesapeake, Virginia 23322 and must
include the NAL/Acct. No. referenced in the caption.
14. 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.
15. 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 World Media Broadcast Company, at its
address of record.
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
South Central Region
47 C.F.R. S:S: 11.35(a), 73.1400(a)(1)(ii) and 73.3526.
47 U.S.C. S: 503(b).
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: 11.35(a).
47 C.F.R. S: 73.1400(a)(1)(ii).
47 C.F.R. S: 73.3526(a)(2).
47 C.F.R. S: 73.3526(b).
47 C.F.R. S: 73.3526(c).
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),
See 47 C.F.R. S: 1.1914
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Federal Communications Commission DA 10-784
Federal Communications Commission DA 10-784