CC Fined But FCC Approves West Palm-Fort Pierce Moves
November 23, 2009 at 11:13 AM (PT)
CLEAR CHANNEL gets hit with an $8,000 fine by the FCC for unauthorized transfer of control of Oldies WOLL (KOOL 105.5)/HOBE SOUND-FORT PIERCE from the ALOHA STATIONS TRUST back to CLEAR CHANNEL, but the Commission has approved the transfer and the move-ins of Classic Rock WKGR (GATER 98.7 FM)/FORT PIERCE (new community of license WELLINGTON, FL) and Top 40 WLDI (WILD 95.5)/FORT PIERCE (to JUNO BEACH, FL) into the WEST PALM BEACH metro.
VERO BEACH BROADCASTERS, a competitor in the FORT PIERCE market, had complained of the moves shifting stations between the two markets, calling the moves "gaming" the ownership caps and grandfathering to allow CLEAR CHANNEL to own an additional station in FORT PIERCE while in practicality owning more than the current limit of stations in that market. The Commission rejected VERO BEACH BROADCASTERS' arguments on the market changes but fined CLEAR CHANNEL for failing to exercise care in keeping some programming decisions made for WOLL under ALOHA separate and independent from its own operations.
FCC Denies LPFM's Complaints About Time-Sharing Partner
The Commission also denied FERN CREEK TRADITIONAL HIGH SCHOOL ALUMNI ASSOCIATION's informal objection to the application of BRYCE HOUSE, INC. to modify its construction permit for WXBH-LP/LOUISVILLE to reflect a time-sharing deal with FERN CREEK's low-power WFHS-LP/LOUISVILLE.
FERN CREEK claimed that the parties' time-sharing and facility-sharing deals had been terminated because BRYCE HOUSE had violated the LPFM rules with ownership changes, a site beyond 10 miles from the company's locatioon, and no educational affiliation. The Commission rejected all three arguments (noting that since LOUISVILLE is outside the top-50 markets, the 10-mile rule is actually 20 miles) and dismissed the petition.