A timely license renewal request by WHNY(AM) McComb MS was held up by the FCC Enforcement Bureau due to concerns about operational violations, and a series of technical problems, periods of silence, missed or tardy communications and oversights resulted in the station being deleted. An attempt to have the license reinstated has been turned down.
The saga began in 2004, when EB held up the renewal application of licensee CWH Broadcasting Inc.
According to the FCC release on the matter, in October of 2010 FCC agents attempted to inspect the station “…and discovered that the Station was not operational and that its studio facilities appeared to have been abandoned.”
The FCC then used certified mail to send an operational status inquiry, using the last known address of the station (which was also published in a trade directory). The letter was returned by the post office as undeliverable.
The FCC terminated the station 1/5/11. CWH finally responded in what it characterized as an “informal request for Commission action” 9/12/11. It asked to have the license reintated, citing “multiple hardships beyond its control, resulting in several unavoidable service interruptions.” The problems included periods of silence and periods of operating with reduced night-time power.
The FCC concurred with CWH that it had the power to waive its rules if presented with extraordinary circumstances, but the FCC said this situation did not rise to that level – in fact, there was no explanation as to why the licensee waited so long to request reconsideration of the station’s deletion.
The FCC said that if it were to constantly revisit closed cases, it “would undercut the goals of administrative efficiency and finality that underlie the statutory limits on seeking reconsideration as well as fundamental fairness to the litigants involved.”
In other words, CWH’s request faced a high hurdle which it failed to clear.