Small AM Daytime Stations Must Follow FCC Engineering and FM Translators’ Programming Rule

It is important for small stations, even AM daytime stations, to realize they are not exempt from the FCC’s rules. In a recent decision involving an AM station, the FCC’s Media Bureau entered into a consent decree with a station for several violations:

“The Consent Decree resolves the Bureau’s investigation into Licensee’s compliance with section 301 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended (Act), 1 and sections 73.1690(b)(5), 73.1745, 73.1820, and 74.1263(b) of the Commission’s rules (Rules)2 . 2. The Bureau and Licensee have negotiated the attached Consent Decree in which Licensee stipulates that it violated (1) section 301 of the Act, and sections 73.1690(b)(5), and 73.1745 of the Rules by operating WECU(AM) at reduced daytime power without Commission authorization, (2) section 73.1820 of the Rules by failing to maintain station logs for WECU(AM), and (3) section 74.1263(b) of the Rules by originating programming on W298BX while WECU(AM) was silent. Pursuant to the Consent Decree, Licensee agrees to implement a comprehensive compliance plan to ensure future compliance with the provisions Act, and the Rules governing operation of AM stations and cross-service FM translators. Finally, Licensee agrees to make an eight thousand dollar ($8,000) civil penalty payment to the United States Treasury.”

The Media Bureau’s full decision can be found here.