A pair of Vermont Class A television stations has failed to respond to several FCC requests for answers, and the result is the loss of Class A status. The events were set in motion by reporting requirements regarding the stations’ children’s programming.
The stations are W19BR Monkton VT and WGMU-CA Burlington VT. Both are licensed to Convergence Entertainment and Communications.
The stations did not get their Form 398s, detailing children’s programming, in to the FCC for a number of quarters.
On two separate occasions – 3/25/11 and 8/18/11 – the FCC sent letters to each station asking about the failure to get the reports in on time. On each occasion, the requests for information went unanswered.
Then, on 3/30/12, the FCC afforded each station with an opportunity to show cause why it should not be downgraded to an LPTV, which also went unanswered.
So, now both stations are LPTVs, forfeiting the extra rights and protections that come with a Class A license.
RBR-TVBR observation: As a general rule of thumb, if you fail to respond to an FCC inquiry of any kind, bad things can and likely will happen. This is particularly true for Class A television stations in advance of the upcoming spectrum auctions. But it really doesn’t matter what kind of license you hold, and what the issue is. If the FCC asks you a question, answer it!