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Federal Communications Commission
Washington, D.C. 20554
In the Matter of File Number:
Beacon Broadcasting, Inc.
) NAL/Acct. No.:
Former Licensee of AM Station WGRP, FM 201132400001
Station WEXC, and Aural Studio Transmitter )
Link WQGW238 Facility ID: # 25227
Greenville, PA FRN: 0008-53-9157
Adopted: April 3, 2012 Released: April 3, 2012
By the Regional Director, Northeast Region, Enforcement Bureau:
1. In this Forfeiture Order (Order), we issue a monetary forfeiture in
the amount of eight thousand dollars ($8,000) to Beacon Broadcasting,
Inc. (Beacon), former licensee of AM Station WGRP, FM Station WEXC,
and aural studio transmitter link (STL) WQGW238, in Greenville,
Pennsylvania, for willfully and repeatedly violating Sections
73.3526(e)(12), 73.1745(a) and 1.903(a) of the Commission's Rules
(Rules). The noted violations involve Beacon's failure to (1) maintain
radio issues/programs lists in Station WGRP's public inspection file;
(2) operate Station WGRP in a manner which complies with the terms of
the station authorization; and (3) operate the STL for Station WEXC on
an authorized frequency.
2. On November 1, 2010, the Enforcement Bureau's Philadelphia Office
(Philadelphia Office) issued a Notice of Apparent Liability for
Forfeiture (NAL) to Beacon in the amount of $18,000 for failure to
maintain radio issues/programs lists in the station's public
inspection file, failure to operate its broadcast station in a manner
which complies with the terms of the station authorization, and
failure to operate its STL (WQGW238) for Station WEXC on an authorized
frequency. In view of the record evidence, the NAL proposed a
forfeiture of $18,000 against Beacon for violation of Sections
73.3526(e)(12), 73.1745(a), and 1.903(a) of the Rules. Beacon
submitted a response to the NAL conceding that it failed to maintain
quarterly issues/programs lists in Station WGRP's public inspection
file and that it operated Station WGRP beyond the station's authorized
nighttime power of 2.2 watts. Beacon challenged, however, the
Philadelphia Office's conclusion that it operated Station WEXC's STL
on an unauthorized frequency. In addition, Beacon requests a
cancellation or reduction on the ground that payment of a forfeiture
would pose a financial hardship.
3. 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 Forfeiture Policy Statement.
In examining Beacon'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. As
discussed below, we have considered Beacon's response in light of
these statutory factors and find that a reduction in the forfeiture
amount is warranted based on Beacon's documented inability to pay.
4. As set forth in the NAL, an agent from the Philadelphia Office
determined, inter alia, that Beacon: (1) failed to maintain
issues/programs lists in Station WGRP's public inspection file and (2)
operated Station WGRP in excess of its authorized nighttime power of
2.2 watts. In its response to the NAL, Beacon does not dispute the
findings with regard to the public inspection file violation and its
overpowered nighttime operation. To the extent Beacon reports that it
corrected the violations after the inspection, the Commission expects
parties to take post-inspection corrective action to come into
compliance with the Rules and such action does not nullify or mitigate
any prior violations. Thus, we find that Beacon willfully and
repeatedly violated Sections 73.3526(e)(12) and 73.1745(a) of the
Rules by failing to maintain issues/programs lists in Station WGRP's
public inspection file and operating Station WGRP in excess of the
authorized nighttime power.
5. We reject Beacon's claim that it was not operating Station WEXC's STL
on an unauthorized frequency. On November 19, 2009, using mobile
direction-finding equipment, an agent determined that the STL for
Station WEXC was operating on the unauthorized frequency 951.500 MHz.
The agent also observed that the service label on the rear of the STL
transmitter specified that J Squared Technical Service of Grants Pass,
Oregon, programmed the transmitter with the frequency 951.500 MHz on
February 22, 2001. In its NAL Response, Beacon submits a statement
from its contract engineer that (1) he "determined through personal
investigation" that the STL was operating on its authorized frequency,
and (2) the 2001 service label indicating that the transmitter was
operating on 951.500 MHz was "overtaken by events when the transmitter
was retuned" to the authorized frequency prior to November 2009. We do
not believe that this unsupported statement from Beacon's contract
engineer outweighs the technical measurements and observations of the
FCC agent who determined that Station WEXC's STL was operating on the
frequency 951.500 MHz on November 19, 2009. Thus, we conclude that the
preponderance of the evidence supports our previous conclusion that
Beacon willfully and repeatedly violated Section 1.903(a) of the
6. Finally, Beacon asserts that payment of the forfeiture would pose a
financial hardship. With regard to an individual's or entity's
inability to pay claim, the Commission has determined that, in
general, gross revenues are the best indicator of an ability to pay a
forfeiture. We have reviewed our records and Beacon's submitted
documentation and conclude that the forfeiture should be reduced to
$8,000, an amount within the range determined by the Bureau to be
IV. ORDERING CLAUSES
7. Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED that, pursuant to Section 503(b) of the
Communications Act of 1934, as amended, and Sections 0.111, 0.204,
0.311, 0.314, and 1.80(f)(4) of the Commission's rules, Beacon
Broadcasting, Inc. IS LIABLE FOR A MONETARY FORFEITURE in the amount
of eight thousand dollars ($8,000) for violations of Sections
73.3526(e)(12), 73.1745(a), and 1.903(a) of the Rules.
8. 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 enforcement 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 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.
Beacon Broadcasting, Inc. shall also send electronic notification on
the date said payment is made to NER-Response@fcc.gov.
9. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that a copy of this Order shall be sent by both
First Class and Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested, to Beacon
Broadcasting, Inc. c/o Harold Glunt at P.O. Box 1798, Warren, Ohio,
44482 and to John S. Neely, counsel for Beacon Broadcasting, Inc., at
Miller and Neely, P.C., Suite 704, 6900 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda,
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
G. Michael Moffitt
The sale of Stations WGRP, WEXC, and WQGW238 to Educational Media
Foundation was consummated on January 7, 2011. See BALH-20100930ADL.
47 C.F.R. S:S: 73.3526(e)(12), 73.1745(a), 1.903(a). Stations WGRP and
Beacon Broadcasting, Inc., Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, 25
FCC Rcd 15254 (Enf. Bur.,2010). The facts in the NAL are incorporated
herein by reference.
47 C.F.R. S:S: 1.903(a), 73.1745(a), 73.3526(e)(12).
See Beacon Broadcasting, Inc., Partial Opposition to Notice of Apparent
Liability for Forfeiture, dated November 30, 2010 (NAL Response) at 1-2.
See Beacon Broadcasting, Inc., Supplement to Partial Opposition to Notice
of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture and Request to Withhold Information
from Public Inspection, dated December 7, 2010 (NAL Response Supplement).
47 U.S.C. S: 503(b).
47 C.F.R. S: 1.80.
The Commission's Forfeiture Policy Statement and Amendment of Section 1.80
of the Rules to Incorporate the Forfeiture Guidelines, Report and Order,
12 FCC Rcd 17087 (1997), recon. denied, 15 FCC Rcd 303 (1999) (Forfeiture
47 U.S.C. S: 503(b)(2)(E).
NAL Response at 1-3.
See International Broadcasting Corporation, Order on Review, 25 FCC Rcd
1538 (2010); Seawest Yacht Brokers, Forfeiture Order, 9 FCC Rcd 6099
See NAL Response, Statement of Michael Glunt.
See PJB Communications of Virginia, Inc., Forfeiture Order, 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., Forfeiture Order, 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, Forfeiture
Order, 15 FCC Rcd 8640 (2002) (forfeiture not deemed excessive where it
represented approximately 7.6 percent of the violator's gross revenues).
47 U.S.C. S: 503(b); 47 C.F.R. S:S: 0.111, 0.204, 0.311, 0.314,
1.80(f)(4), 73.3526(e)12), 73.1745(a), 1.903(a).
47 U.S.C. S: 504(a).
Federal Communications Commission DA 12-527
Federal Communications Commission DA 12-527