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Value Inn

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Released: April 10, 2014

Federal Communications Commission

DA 14-472

Before the

Federal Communications Commission

Washington, D.C. 20554

)
In the Matter of
)
File No.: EB-FIELDWR-14-00014322
)
Value Inn
)
Citation No. C201432980002
)
Des Moines, Washington
)

CITATION AND ORDER

Exceeding Signal Leakage Limits in Aeronautical Bands

Adopted: April 9, 2014

Released: April 10, 2014

By the Acting District Director, Seattle Office, Western Region, Enforcement Bureau:

I.

INTRODUCTION

1.
This is an official

CITATION AND ORDER

(Citation) issued pursuant to Section
503(b)(5) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended (Communications Act or Act),1 to Value Inn
in Des Moines, Washington. Specifically, Value Inn is being cited for failing to notify the Commission
before operating a multichannel video programming distributor (MVPD) system with a carrier in the
aeronautical radio frequency band, in violation of Section 76.1804 of the Commission’s rules (Rules),2
and for exceeding cable signal leakage limits in aeronautical frequency bands in violation of Section
76.605(a)(12) of the Rules.3
2.
Notice of Duty to Comply With Laws: Value Inn should take immediate steps to come
into compliance and reduce excessive signal leakage, and to avoid any recurrence of the misconduct
described herein. Value Inn also must immediately file FCC Form 321.4 Value Inn is hereby on notice
that if it subsequently engages in any conduct of the type described in this Citation, including any
violation of Sections 76.1804 and 76.605(a)(12) of the Rules, it may be subject to civil penalties,
including but not limited to substantial monetary fines (forfeitures) and seizure of equipment. Such
forfeitures may be based on both the conduct that led to this Citation and the conduct following it.5
3.
Your Response Required: Pursuant to Sections 4(i), 4(j), and 403 of the Communications
Act,6 we also direct Value Inn to respond in writing, within thirty (30) calendar days after the release date

1 47 U.S.C. § 503(b)(5).
2 47 C.F.R. § 76.1804.
3 47 C.F.R. § 76.605(a)(12).
4 Form 321 is an Aeronautical Frequency Notification Form, which must be submitted electronically via the Cable
Operations and Licensing System Website (COALS). See http://www.fcc.gov/forms.
5 See 47 U.S.C § 503(b)(5). See also S. Rep. No. 95-580, 95th Cong., 1st Sess. at 9 (1977) (If a person or entity that
has been issued a citation by the Commission thereafter engages in the conduct for which the citation of violation
was sent, the subsequent notice of apparent liability “would attach not only for the conduct occurring subsequently
but also for the conduct for which the citation was originally sent
.”) (emphasis added).
6 47 U.S.C. §§ 154(i), 154(j), 403.

Federal Communications Commission

DA 14-472

of this Citation, and signed under penalty of perjury, with descriptions of the specific action(s) taken or
planned to correct the violations and preclude recurrence of the violations, and also a timeline for
completion of any pending corrective action(s).

II.

BACKGROUND

4.
On February 13, 2014, an agent from the Enforcement Bureau’s Seattle Office conducted
an investigation and found Value Inn, located at 22246 Pacific Hwy S, Des Moines, Washington, operated
a non-cable MVPD system at its facility. The agent also found that the Value Inn MVPD system was
using aeronautical frequencies, but had not filed an FCC Form 321 to notify the Commission of its
operation in the aeronautical band. The agents further found that the Value Inn MVPD system was
emitting a radio carrier signal above allowed limits on frequency bands utilized by aeronautical services.
On February 13, 2014, the agent from the Seattle Office conducted field strength measurements on the
aeronautical band frequency 133.2625 MHz at a distance greater than three meters from the Value Inn
MVPD equipment and measured an emission of 106 microvolts per meter.

III.

APPLICABLE LAW AND VIOLATIONS

5.
The Rules provide that cable and non-cable MVPDs that transmit carriers with certain
characteristics within frequency bands of 108-137 MHz and 225-400 MHz must comply with specific
technical requirements delineated in the Rules in order to avoid interference to other licensed operations,
including aeronautical systems operating in these frequency ranges. In particular, Section 76.610 of the
Rules provides that all MVPDs (cable and non-cable) transmitting carriers or other signal components
carried at an average power level equal to or greater than 10-4 watts across a 25 kHz bandwidth in any 160
microsecond period, at any point in the cable distribution system in the frequency bands 108-137 and
225-400 MHz for any purpose, must comply with, among other requirements, Sections 76.605(a)(12) and
76.1804 of the Rules.7 Value Inn was required to comply with these Rules because the MVPD system at
its property in Des Moines, Washington, transmits a carrier at an average power level equal to or greater
than 10-4 watts across a 25 kHz bandwidth in any 160 microsecond period, and carries signals in the 108-
137 MHz and 225-400 MHz aeronautical bands.
6.
Section 76.605(a)(12) of the Rules provides that signal leakage from a cable television
system: (1) between 54 MHz and 216 MHz shall be limited to 20 micro-volts per meter, measured at
three meters and (2) less than or equal to 54 MHz and more than 216 MHz shall be limited to 15 micro-
volts per meter, measured at 30 meters.8 At the time of the investigation, the agent from the Seattle
Office conducted field strength measurements on the frequency 133.2625 MHz at a distance greater than
three meters from the MVPD system of Value Inn, and measured an emission of 106 microvolts per meter
which exceeds the field strength allowed on those frequencies by the Rules.
7.
Section 76.1804 of the Rules requires that an “MVPD shall notify the Commission before
transmitting any carrier or other signal component with an average power level across a 25 kHz
bandwidth in any 160 microsecond time period equal to or greater than 10-4 watts at any point in the cable
distribution system on any frequency or frequencies in the aeronautical radio frequency bands (108-137
and 225-400 MHz). The notification shall be made on FCC Form 321.”9 At the time of the investigation,
Value Inn was using frequencies in the aeronautical band, but had not notified the Commission as
required. Based on the foregoing evidence, we find that Value Inn violated Sections 76.1804 and

7 47 C.F.R. § 76.610.
8 47 C.F.R. § 76.605(a)(12).
9 47 C.F.R. § 76.1804.
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DA 14-472

76.605(a)(12) of the Rules by failing to notify the Commission of its operations and by exceeding cable
signal leakage limits.10

IV.

REQUEST FOR INFORMATION

8.
Pursuant to Sections 4(i), 4(j), and 403 of the Communications Act,11 Value Inn is
directed to describe the steps it has taken or plans to take to come into compliance with the Commission’s
cable signal leakage and notification rules, as well as a timeline for any pending corrective actions, within
thirty (30) calendar days after the release date of this Citation. A failure to respond in writing, or an
inadequate, incomplete, or misleading response, may subject Value Inn to additional sanctions.12

V.

RESPONDING TO THIS CITATION

9.
In addition to the required written information described in paragraphs 3 and 8, above,
Value Inn may, if it so chooses, respond to this Citation—challenging the factual and legal findings
herein—within thirty (30) calendar days from the release date of this Citation either through (1) a written
statement, (2) a teleconference interview, or (3) a personal interview at the Commission Field Office
nearest to your place of business.
10.
If you would like to arrange a teleconference or personal interview, please contact the
Seattle Office at (425) 820-6271. The nearest Commission Field Office is located in Kirkland, WA. Such
teleconference or interview must take place within thirty calendar (30) days of the date of this Citation. If
you would like to submit a written response, including any supporting documentation, you must send the
response within thirty (30) calendar days of the date of this Citation to the contact and address provided in
paragraph 11, below.
11.
All written communications, including the information requested in paragraphs 3 and 8,
above, should be provided to the address below.
Leo Cirbo
Federal Communications Commission
Seattle Office
11410 NE 122 Way Suite 312
Kirkland, WA 98034

Re: EB-FIELDWR-14-00014322

12.
Reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities are available upon request.
Include a description of the accommodation you will need, and include as much detail as you can. Also

10 47 C.F.R. §§ 76.605(a)(12), 76.1804.
11 47 U.S.C. §§ 154(i), 154(j), 403.
12 See, e.g., SBC Communications, Inc., Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, Forfeiture Order, 17 FCC Rcd 7589,
7599–7600, ¶¶ 23–28 (2002) (imposing $100,000 forfeiture for egregious and intentional misconduct, i.e., refusing
to attest to truthfulness and accuracy of responses to a Letter Inquiry (LOI)); Connect Paging, Inc. d/b/a Get A
Phone
, Forfeiture Order, 22 FCC Rcd 15146 (Enf. Bur. 2007) (imposing $4,000 forfeiture for failure to respond to
an LOI); BigZoo.Com Corporation, Order of Forfeiture, 20 FCC Rcd 3954 (Enf. Bur. 2005) (imposing $20,000
forfeiture for failure to respond to a USF LOI); Donald W. Kaminski, Jr., Forfeiture Order, 18 FCC Rcd 26065 (Enf.
Bur. 2003) (imposing $4,000 forfeiture for failure to respond to an LOI). See also World Communications Satellite
Systems, Inc
., Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, 18 FCC Rcd 18545 (Enf. Bur. 2003) (proposing $10,000
forfeiture for a non-responsive reply to an LOI); Digital Antenna, Inc., Sunrise, Florida, Notice of Apparent
Liability for Forfeiture, 23 FCC Rcd 7600 (Enf. Bur. 2008) (proposing $11,000 forfeiture for failure to provide
complete responses to an LOI).
3

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DA 14-472

include a way we can contact you if we need more information. Please allow at least five (5) business
days advance notice; last minute requests will be accepted, but may be impossible to fill. Send an e-mail
to fcc504@fcc.gov or call the FCC’s Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau:

For sign language interpreters, CART, and other reasonable accommodations:
202-418-0530 (voice), 202-418-0432 (tty);

For accessible format materials (braille, large print, electronic files, and audio format):
202-418-0531 (voice), 202-418-7365 (tty).
13.
Please be advised that it is a violation of Section 1.17 of the Commission’s rules (47
C.F.R. § 1.17) for any person or a staff member of that person to make any false or misleading written or
oral statement of fact. Specifically, no person shall:
(1) In any written or oral statement of fact, intentionally provide material factual
information that is incorrect or intentionally omit material information that is
necessary to prevent any material factual statement that is made from being
incorrect or misleading; and
(2) In any written statement of fact, provide material factual information that is
incorrect or omit material information that is necessary to prevent any material
factual statement that is made from being incorrect or misleading without a
reasonable basis for believing that any such material factual statement is correct
and not misleading.13
14.
Further, the knowing and willful making of any false statement, or the concealment of
any material fact, in reply to this Citation is punishable by fine or imprisonment under 18 U.S.C. § 1001.
15.
If you violate Section 1.17 of the Commission’s rules or the criminal statute referenced
above, you may be subject to further legal action, including monetary fines pursuant to Section 503 of the
Communications Act.14
16.
Under the Privacy Act of 1974, 5 U.S.C. § 552a(e)(3), we are informing you that the
Commission’s staff will use all relevant material information before it, including information that you
disclose in your interview or written statement, to determine what, if any, enforcement action is required
to ensure your compliance with the Communications Act and the Commission’s rules.

VI.

FUTURE VIOLATIONS

17.
If, after receipt of this Citation, Value Inn again violates Sections 76.1804 and
76.605(a)(12) of the Rules by engaging in conduct of the type described herein, the Commission may
impose monetary forfeitures not to exceed $16,000 for each such violation or each day of a continuing
violation, and up to $112,500 for any single act or failure to act.15 For instance, the Commission could
impose separate forfeitures for each day on which its MVPD system exceeds cable signal leakage limits.
Further, as discussed above, such forfeitures may be based on both the conduct that led to the Citation and

13 47 C.F.R. § 1.17.
14 47 U.S.C. § 503.
15 See 47 U.S.C. §§ 401, 501, 503; 47 C.F.R. § 1.80(b)(7). This amount is subject to further adjustment for inflation
(see 47 C.F.R. § 1.80(b)(9)), and the forfeiture amount applicable to any violation will be determined based on the
statutory amount designated at the time of the violation.
4

Federal Communications Commission

DA 14-472

the conduct following it.16 In addition, violations of the Communications Act or the Rules also can result
in seizure of equipment through in rem forfeiture actions,17 as well as criminal sanctions, including
imprisonment.18

VII.

ORDERING CLAUSES

18.

IT IS ORDERED

that, pursuant to Sections 4(i), 4(j), and 403 of the Communications
Act, Value Inn must provide the written information requested in paragraphs 3 and 8, above. The
response to the request for information must be provided in writing, signed under penalty of perjury by an
authorized official at Value Inn with personal knowledge of the information and representations provided
in the written response, and must be received by the FCC within thirty (30) calendar days after the release
date of this Citation and Order.
19.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED

that a copy of this Citation and Order shall be sent both
by First Class U.S. Mail and Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested, to Value Inn at 22246 Pacific
Hwy S, Des Moines, Washington 98198.

FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION

Leo Cirbo
Acting District Director
Seattle Office
Western Region
Enforcement Bureau

16 See paragraph 2, supra.
17 See 47 U.S.C. § 510.
18 See 47 U.S.C. §§ 401, 501.
5

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