FCC still walking the children’s TV beat


Dollar SignWe haven’t seen many Class A television stations busted down to LPTV status due to problems with their adherence to children’s television reporting regulations lately, but we are still seeing quite a few get hit with monetary penalties.

Capital Broadcasting Corporation, licensee of KSKJ-CA Van Nuys CA, is one of them. The FCC said it failed to submit its report in a timely manner for 22 quarters – and it racked up a total penalty of $20K.

Korean American TV Broadcasting Corporation is another – it’s the licensee of WKTB-CD Norcross GA. Numerous late or missing reports resulted in a $20K fine. There was a transfer of control of the station during the term of the license which the FCC said did not mitigate the current licensee’s liability, but it did grant a big reduction based on the licensee’s overall record of compliance and knocked the penalty down to $9K.

Finally, WNVN-LP Roanoke Rapids NC, licensed to First Media Radio LLC, was issued a forfeiture order for two $3K violations, which the FCC said stands after reviewing the stations response to its notice of apparent liability. The FCC gave the station the option of accepting demotion to LPTV status in lieu of paying the fine.

RBR-TVBR observation: Class A licensees must keep in mind that the price they pay for the benefits of regulatory benefits that mirror those of full power television are the need to adhere to the stricter rules that come with them. LPTVs are not required to meet any children’s programming reporting requirements, for example, and we have even seen the FCC offer licensees the option of accepting a downgrade to LPTV status rather than pay a fine, as in the WNVN-LP case cited above. We wonder how many LPTVs got a Class A upgrade and were unprepared to deal with the extra responsibilities.

At any rate, by now we hope that the word is out and Class A licensees will do what they need to do to avoid these fines.