FCC levies largest-ever fine - Broadcasting & Cable

FCC levies largest-ever fine

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Peninsula Communications faces the revocation of all of its broadcast
licenses and it has been ordered to pay the largest Federal Communications
Commission fine ever imposed on a broadcaster.

Unless the company can convince an FCC administrative judge otherwise, the
commission said Wednesday that Peninsula's refusal to cease operation of seven
translators in Alaska, as ordered by the agency in May, makes it unfit to be a
licensee.

The company was also ordered to pay a $140,000 fine.

Peninsula operates four full-power radio stations in Alaska: KTGL(AM) Homer,
KXBA(FM) Nikiski, KWVV-FM Homer and KPEN-FM Soldotna.

The company also operates four translators in addition to the seven it was
ordered to shut in May.

Peninsula argued that it was not required to shut down the seven translators
until a federal appeals court rules on the company's appeal.

The FCC countered that even though applicants facing cease-and-desist orders
are typically allowed to operate until court appeals resolve, Peninsula has
failed to remedy a string of rules violations that have been ongoing since
1994.

In fact, ending those violations was a condition of license renewals and
application grants issued in 1997.

Furthermore, the agency said, Peninsula's refusal to comply with the May
order is grounds for the company to lose all of its licenses even if the court
overturns the cease-and-desist order against the translators.

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