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                                   Before the

                       Federal Communications Commission

                             Washington, D.C. 20554

     In the Matter of                                                       
     Sparta-Tomah Broadcasting Co., Inc                                     
                                          )     FRN: 0002713550             
     Licensee of Radio Station WKLJ                                         
                                          )     File Number: EB-07-CG-164   
     Facility ID # 61681                                                    
     Sparta, Wisconsin                                                      

     Licensee of Radio Station WFBZ       )))                               
                                                File Number: EB-07-CG-218   
     Facility ID # 56616                  )                                 
                                                NAL/Acct. No: 200832320002  
     Trempealeau, Wisconsin               )                                 

                                FORFEITURE ORDER

   Adopted: September 1, 2009 Released: September 3, 2009

   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 eight hundred dollars ($8,800) to
       Sparta-Tomah Broadcasting Co. Inc. ("Sparta-Tomah"), licensee of AM
       Station WKLJ in Sparta, Wisconsin and FM Station WFBZ in Trempealeau,
       Wisconsin, for willfully and repeatedly violating Sections 73.1745 and
       73.1125 of the Commission's Rules ("Rules") by operating WKLJ at a
       power of more than 59 watts during nighttime hours, in direct
       contravention of the terms of its station authorization, and failing
       to maintain a main studio for WFBZ consistent with the Rules. In this
       Order, we consider Sparta-Tomah's arguments that the forfeiture amount
       should be cancelled in light of Sparta-Tomah's remedial efforts and
       its history of compliance with the Commission's Rules.


    2. Beginning on April 4, 2007, an agent with the Chicago Field Office
       conducted several inspections at stations WKLJ and WFBZ. As described
       more fully below, the agent found that station WKLJ was failing to
       reduce power at local sunset time as required by its station
       authorization and that Sparta-Tomah was not maintaining a main studio
       for station WFBZ consistent with the Commission's Rules.

    3. The station authorization for WKLJ specifies that the station must
       reduce power from its authorized daytime power of 5000 Watts to its
       authorized nighttime power of 59 Watts at local sunset time. During
       the April 4, 2007 inspection, a FCC agent reviewed WKLJ's station
       logs, which indicated that WKLJ was not reducing power at night as
       required by its license during February, March and April, 2007.
       Subsequent field strength measurements taken by the agent on May 22,
       2007 and May 23, 2007, showed that WKLJ failed to reduce power to the
       authorized nighttime levels at local sunset time. During a follow-up
       inspection on May 24, 2007, the station's general manager and engineer
       confirmed that the station had not been reducing power at local sunset
       time since at least January 2007.

    4. With regard to the WFBZ main studio, the FCC agent found during his
       May 23, 2007, inspection that the station's purported main studio in
       Onalaska, WI, which needed to be unlocked by the station's engineer,
       had assorted non-operational broadcast equipment lying on the floor,
       no physical radio link or landline telecommunications data link to the
       WFBZ transmitter, and no employees in the office at that time. During
       an interview on May 24, 2007, WFBZ's general manager and engineer
       reported that, after Sparta acquired WFBZ, all of the station's
       operations, including the broadcast studio, were moved to Sparta's
       headquarters at 113 West Oak Street in Sparta, WI. According to the
       general manager, the Onalaska office had one full time employee until
       May 21, 2007. The employee's primary responsibility at the Onalaska
       office was to answer the phone. The general manager reported to the
       agent that Sparta was in the process of installing the equipment, that
       it planned to begin operating a studio-to-transmitter link between the
       Onalaska office and Sparta's headquarters, and that it would be
       assigning staff to work full-time from the Onalaska office.

    5. On May 23, 2008, the Chicago Field Office issued a Notice of Apparent
       Liability for Forfeiture ("NAL") in the amount of $11,000 to
       Sparta-Tomah for failure to reduce power at local sunset time and
       failure to maintain a main studio for WFBZ consistent with the Rules.
       In its response, Sparta-Tomah does not dispute the findings in the
       NAL, but requests that we cancel the forfeiture in light of its
       remedial efforts and history of compliance.


    6. The proposed forfeiture amount in this case was assessed in accordance
       with Section 503(b) of the 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 ("Forfeiture
       Policy Statement"). In examining Sparta-Tomah'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

    7. We decline to cancel or reduce the forfeiture based on Sparta-Tomah's
       alleged remedial efforts. The Commission consistently has held that
       reductions are appropriate based on good faith efforts to correct or
       remedy violations prior to the Commission's involvement. Sparta-Tomah
       has not submitted any documentation showing that it had taken steps to
       correct WKLJ's nighttime over-powered operations prior to the agent's
       inspection on April 4, 2007. With regard to the main studio for WFBZ,
       Sparta-Tomah submits documentation showing that it purchased broadcast
       equipment for the studio in August 2006. Although the equipment was
       purchased prior to the agent's inspection of the main studio on May
       23, 2007, Sparta-Tomah failed to install any of the equipment despite
       having ample time to do so. Sparta-Tomah's inaction does not
       constitute a good faith effort to comply and nullifies any downward
       adjustment in the forfeiture for which Sparta-Tomah may have been
       entitled for pre-inspection remedial efforts. We therefore conclude
       that a reduction on this basis is not warranted.

    8. Finally, Sparta-Tomah asks that we consider reducing the forfeiture
       based on its overall record of compliance with the Commission's Rules.
       We have reviewed our records and find no other violations against the
       licensee. Under similar circumstances, we have reduced proposed
       forfeitures, and find that doing so in this case is appropriate. 
       Consequently, we reduce Sparta-Tomah's forfeiture amount from $11,000
       to $8,800.


    9. ACCORDINGLY, IT IS ORDERED that, pursuant to Section 503(b) of the
       Communications Act of 1934, as amended ("Act"), and Sections 0.111,
       0.311 and 1.80(f)(4) of the Commission's Rules, Sparta-Tomah
       Broadcasting Co. Inc., IS LIABLE FOR A MONETARY FORFEITURE in the
       amount of $8,800 for willfully and repeatedly violating Sections
       73.1745 and 73.1125 of the Rules.

   10. 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: with any questions regarding payment procedures. 
       Sparta-Tomah Broadcasting Co., Inc. shall also send electronic
       notification on the date said payment is made to

   11. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that a copy of this Order shall be sent by First
       Class Mail and Certified Mail Return Receipt Requested to Sparta-Tomah
       Broadcasting Co., Inc., at its address of record.


   G. Michael Moffitt

   Regional Director, Northeast Region

   Enforcement Bureau

   47 C.F.R. S:S: 73.1745(a), and 73.1125(a)

   As noted in the NAL,  the location of Sparta's headquarters, i.e., 113
   West Oak Street, Sparta, Wisconsin, is not within WFBZ's community of
   license, is not within WFBZ's principal contour, and is not within
   twenty-five miles of the reference coordinates of Trempealeau, which is
   the community of license for WFBZ. Thus, under the Commission's main
   studio requirements, this location is not eligible to be the main studio
   for WFBZ. See 47 C.F.R. S: 73.1125(a).

   Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, NAL/Acct. No. 200832320002
   (Enf. Bur., Chicago Office, rel. May 23, 2008).

   Letter from John F. Neely, Counsel for Sparta-Tomah, to FCC Chicago
   Office, dated June 17, 2008. At the request of FCC staff, Sparta-Tomah
   submitted a supplemental response to the NAL on June 30, 2009 regarding
   its remedial efforts. Letter from John F. Neely, Counsel for Sparta-Tomah,
   to Sharon Webber, dated June 30, 2009.

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

   47 C.F.R. S: 1.80.

   12 FCC Rcd 17087 (1997), recon. denied, 15 FCC Rcd 303 (1999).

   47 U.S.C. S: 503(b)(2)(E).

   See e.g., Sutro Broadcasting Corporation, 19 FCC Rcd 15274, 15277 (2004)
   (stating that the Commission will generally reduce the assessed forfeiture
   amount "based on the good faith corrective efforts of a violator when
   those actions were taken prior to Commission notification of the

   See e.g., Cayuga County Community College, Forfeiture Order, 2009 WL
   1856467 (EB 2009).

   47 U.S.C. S: 503(b), 47 C.F.R. S:S: 0.111, 0.311, 1.80(f)(4), 11.35(a),
   73.1560(a), 73.1745(a), 73.3526(e)(12).

   47 U.S.C. S: 504(a).

   Federal Communications Commission DA 09-1989



   Federal Communications Commission DA 09-1989