Senator intercedes on behalf of elapsed AM CP


Broadcast TowerA series of misfortunes conspired against the timely construction of an Elmira-area AM station – but Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) believes that the nature of some of those mishaps underscore the need for the station, and has written to FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski to plead for the CP’s reinstatement.

The station, WKAJ-AM Little Falls NY, was acquired by Cranesville Block Company in a deal filed with the FCC 2/5/10 valued at $11K.

Among its misfortunes on the way to construction, it lost its projected transmitter site – it found another and applied to move the city of license to Saint Johnsville NY to make use of it.

Hurricane Irene presented another unforeseen obstacle, and according the Schumer, the licensee also faced earthquakes, tornadoes and the last-minute withdrawal of a key contractor.

The FCC not only turned down a request for an extension of the 12/15/11 CP expiration date, it also ordered the licensee to make sure that the tower, to the extent it had been constructed, conformed to all visibility rules until such time as it could be dismantled.

Schumer wrote, “There is no question that the upstate New York would be stronger- and safer -with increased local radio service in the future. As expressed in the CSC pleading, the proposed station would include programming with frequent local news casts, talk shows, children’s programming and broadcasts aimed at the needs of schools and other anchor institutions.

Additionally, a station would enable local first responders and residents to communicate during future floods and storms, as well as in other emergencies. At the same time, it is difficult to see what harm would be caused by the waiver the CBC seeks. I would urge the FCC to provide full consideration to the CSC’s Petition for Waiver and Reinstatement of Construction Permit Nunc Pro Tunc.”

Genachowski referred the matter to the Media Bureau, which advised Schumer that the Commission was in fact reviewing the CP. Most recently, noted the Bureau, it received an Application for Review signed by some 200 local citizens, and said that Schumer’s views would be carefully considered as well, as the Commission moves forward on the matter as expeditiously as possible.

RBR-TVBR observation: All we can say is it’s always good to have friends in high places. However, it would appear that not even senatorial intervention can add some grease to the slowly-turning wheels of the federal bureaucracy.


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