Double trouble for LPTV


Noncommercial WRWS-LP has been hit with two fines for two violations of FCC regulations, but was able at least to get them reduced almost in half. The initial assessment of $18K was discounted to $9.6K. The station is operated by Bethune-Cookman College Inc. in Daytona Beach FL.

One problem was the use of an unlicensed studio-transmitter link. It had been operating on 950.000 MHz with 2.8 watts, and was the sole method available to get material between the two poles. This carried a base fine of $5K. The discovery apparently came as a surprise to everybody at the station. The college was able to produce documentation showing that back in April 2005 it actually paid a contractor to procure and process an STL license application. Why the acquisition of the license never happened was a mystery, and it happened under the watch of a since-departed dean – the new school exec had no idea there was any issue at all. The FCC took circumstance into account and reduced the fine from $5K to $4K.

The FCC wanted $13K for failure to have EAS equipment. The GM said he was unaware that a low power noncom was required to have such equipment; the CE said he had asked the college to buy an EAS decoder but failed to convince management that it was actually needed. The fine here was lowered as well, due to its overall compliance with the rules in the past. The final fine is $9.6K total for both infractions.