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Barrington Peoria License LLC

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Released: November 6, 2013

Federal Communications Commission


DA 13-2131

Before the

Federal Communications Commission

Washington, D.C. 20554

In the Matter of
)
)

Barrington Peoria License LLC
)
Facility I.D. No. 6866
Licensee of Station WHOI
)
NAL/Acct. No.: 201341420056
Peoria, Illinois
)
FRN: 0015248818

NOTICE OF APPARENT

LIABILITY FOR FORFEITURE

Adopted: November 5, 2013

Released: November 6, 2013

By the Chief, Video Division, Media Bureau:

I.

INTRODUCTION:

1.
In this Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture (“NAL”) issued pursuant to Section
503(b) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended (the “Act”), and Section 1.80 of the
Commission’s Rules (the “Rules”),1 the Commission finds that Barrington Peoria License LLC (the
“Licensee”), licensee of Station WHOI, Peoria, Illinois (the “Station”), apparently willfully and
repeatedly violated Section 73.35262 of the Rules by failing to publicize the existence and location of the
Station’s Children’s Television Programming Reports. Based upon our review of the facts and
circumstances before us, we conclude that the Licensee is apparently liable for a monetary forfeiture in
the amount of one thousand dollars ($1,000).

II.

BACKGROUND:

2.
Section 73.3526 of the Rules requires each commercial broadcast licensee to maintain a
public inspection file containing specific types of information related to station operations.3 As set forth
in subsection 73.3526(e)(11)(iii), each commercial television licensee is required to prepare and place in
its public inspection file a Children’s Television Programming Report (FCC Form 398) for each calendar
quarter reflecting, inter alia, the efforts that it made during that quarter to serve the educational and
informational needs of children. That subsection also requires licensees to file the reports with the
Commission and to publicize the existence and location of the reports.
3.
On July 26, 2013, the Licensee filed its license renewal application (FCC Form 303-S)
for the Station.4 In response to Section IV, Question 10 of the Application, the Licensee stated that its
standard announcement concerning the existence and location of Children’s Television Programming
Reports apparently ceased airing in the middle of 2012 and did not begin again until the problem was
discovered in May 2013.5


1 47 U.S.C. § 503(b); 47 C.F.R. § 1.80.
2 47 C.F.R. § 73.3526.
3 47 C.F.R. § 73.3526.
4 File No. BRCDT-20130726ABP.
5 Id., Exhibit 27.

Federal Communications Commission

DA 13-2131

III.

DISCUSSION

4.
The Licensee apparently failed to publicize the existence and location of the Station’s
Children’s Television Programming Reports for approximately one year. This constitutes apparent willful
and/or repeated violations of Section 73.3526(e)(11)(iii). The Licensee may have since taken corrective
actions to prevent subsequent violations of the children's television rules and policies; however, the
Commission has found that the fact that a broadcast station may have implemented a plan to prevent
future violations of the Commission’s children’s television rules and policies does not relieve the licensee
of liability for prior violations.6
5.
This NAL is issued pursuant to Section 503(b)(1)(B) of the Act. Under that provision,
any person who is determined by the Commission to have willfully or repeatedly failed to comply with
any provision of the Act or any rule, regulation, or order issued by the Commission shall be liable to the
United States for a forfeiture penalty.7 Section 312(f)(1) of the Act defines willful as “the conscious and
deliberate commission or omission of [any] act, irrespective of any intent to violate” the law.8 The
legislative history to Section 312(f)(1) of the Act clarifies that this definition of willful applies to both
Sections 312 and 503(b) of the Act,9 and the Commission has so interpreted the term in the Section
503(b) context.10 Section 312(f)(2) of the Act provides that “[t]he term ‘repeated,’ when used with
reference to the commission or omission of any act, means the commission or omission of such act more
than once or, if such commission or omission is continuous, for more than one day.”11
6.
The Commission’s Forfeiture Policy Statement and Section 1.80(b)(4) of the Rules
establish a base forfeiture amount of $10,000 for public file violations.12 In determining the appropriate
forfeiture amount, we may adjust the base amount upward or downward by considering the factors
enumerated in Section 503(b)(2)(D) of the Act, including “the nature, circumstances, extent, and gravity
of the violation and, with respect to the violator, the degree of culpability, any history of prior offenses,
ability to pay, and such other matters as justice may require.”13 In this case, the Licensee failed to
publicize the Station’s Children’s Television Programming Reports for approximately one year, we
believe that a forfeiture in the amount of $1,000 is appropriate for this violation. Accordingly, we find
that the Licensee is liable for a forfeiture in the amount of $1,000 for its apparent willful and repeated
violations of Sections 73.3526.14


6 See, e.g., WSOC Television, 25 FCC Rcd at 6125; WCVB Hearst Television, Inc., 25 FCC Rcd at 6129-30; WFTV,
Inc. (WFTV(TV))
, Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, 25 FCC Rcd 6140 (2010).
7 47 U.S.C. § 503(b)(1)(B); see also 47 C.F.R. § 1.80(a)(1).
8 47 U.S.C. § 312(f)(1).
9 See H.R. Rep. No. 97-765, 97th Cong. 2d Sess. 51 (1982).
10 See Southern California Broadcasting Co., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 6 FCC Rcd 4387, 4388 (1991).
11 47 U.S.C. § 312(f)(2).
12 See Forfeiture Policy Statement and Amendment of Section 1.80(b) of the Rules to Incorporate the Forfeiture
Guidelines
, Report and Order, 12 FCC Rcd 17087, 17113-15 (1997) (“Forfeiture Policy Statement”), recon. denied,
15 FCC Rcd. 303 (1999); 47 C.F.R. § 1.80(b)(4), note to paragraph (b)(4), Section I.
13 47 U.S.C. § 503(b)(2)(D); see also Forfeiture Policy Statement, 12 FCC Rcd at 17100-01; 47 C.F.R. § 1.80(b)(4);
47 C.F.R. § 1.80(b)(4), note to paragraph (b)(4), Section II.
14 Based upon the record before us, we think that an admonishment is warranted for the station's failure to identify
CORE children’s programming for publishers of program guides.
2

Federal Communications Commission

DA 13-2131

IV.

ORDERING CLAUSES

7.
Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED, pursuant to Section 503(b) of the Communications Act
of 1934, as amended, and Section 1.80 of the Commission’s Rules, that Barrington Peoria License LLC is
hereby NOTIFIED of its APPARENT LIABILITY FOR FORFEITURE in the amount of one thousand
dollars ($1,000) for its apparent willful and repeated violation of Sections 73.3526 of the Commission’s
Rules.
8.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED, pursuant to Section 1.80 of the Commission’s Rules, that
within thirty (30) days of the release date of this NAL, Barrington Peoria License LLC SHALL PAY the
full amount of the proposed forfeiture or SHALL FILE a written statement seeking reduction or
cancellation of the proposed forfeiture.
9.
Payment of the proposed forfeiture must be made by check or similar instrument, payable
to the order of the Federal Communications Commission. The payment must include the NAL/Acct. No.
and FRN No. referenced in the caption above. Payment by check or money order may be mailed to Federal
Communications Commission, at P.O. Box 979088, St. Louis, MO 63197-9000. Payment by overnight
mail may be sent to U.S. Bank-Government Lockbox #979088, SL-MO-C2-GL, 1005 Convention Plaza, St.
Louis, MO 63101. Payment by wire transfer may be made to ABA Number 021030004, receiving bank:
TREAS NYC, BNF: FCC/ACV--27000001 and account number as expressed on the remittance instrument.
If completing the FCC Form 159, enter the NAL/Account number in block number 23A (call sign/other ID),
and enter the letters “FORF” in block number 24A (payment type code).
10.
The response, if any, must be mailed to Office of the Secretary, Federal Communications
Commission, 445 12th Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20554, ATTN: Peter Saharko, Attorney Adviser,
Video Division, Media Bureau, and MUST INCLUDE the NAL/Acct. No. referenced above. A copy
should also be sent by email to peter.saharko@fcc.gov
11.
The Commission will not consider reducing or canceling a forfeiture in response to a
claim of inability to pay unless the respondent submits: (1) federal tax returns for the most recent three-
year period; (2) financial statements prepared according to generally accepted accounting practices
(“GAAP”); or (3) some other reliable and objective documentation that accurately reflects the
respondent’s current financial status. Any claim of inability to pay must specifically identify the basis for
the claim by reference to the financial documentation submitted.
12.
Requests for full payment of the forfeiture proposed in this NAL under the installment
plan should be sent to: Associate Managing Director- Financial Operations, 445 12th Street, S.W., Room
1-A625, Washington, D.C. 20554.15


15 See 47 C.F.R. § 1.1914.
3

Federal Communications Commission

DA 13-2131

13.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that copies of this NAL shall be sent, by First Class and
Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested, to Barrington Peoria License LLC, 650 East Algonquin Road,
Schaumburg, Illinois, 60173, and to its counsel, Michael Beder, Covington & Burling LLP, 1201
Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, D.C. 20004-2401.
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
Barbara A. Kreisman
Chief, Video Division
Media Bureau
4

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