FCC Fines Low-Power Station $20K

WETV-LP Murfreesboro, Tenn., didn’t carry requisite three hours of children's programming per week.

The Federal Communications Commission levied a high-powered fine against a low-power station for failing to air children's programming.

In a notice of apparent liability issued Wednesday, the commission proposed fining class-A WETV-LP Murfreesboro, Tenn., $20,000 for not carrying the requisite three hours of children's programming per week.

Not all low-power stations are required to comply with those rules, but class-A low-powers have similar must-carry rights as full-power stations and have similar public-interest obligations, as well.

The base forfeiture is $8,000, but the FCC found it to be a willful and repeated violation that warranted a penalty of two-and-a-half times that base amount,

The station volunteered the violation on its license-renewal application, suggesting that it took it a while after it was granted class-A status to find "good children's programming."