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$4K Forfeiture to Glen Rubash for Operating Unlicensed Radio Station

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Released: November 21, 2013

Federal Communications Commission

DA 13-2235

Before the

Federal Communications Commission

Washington, D.C. 20554

In the Matter of



Glen Rubash


File Number: EB-FIELDSCR-12-00004676


NAL/Acct. No.: 201332560002

Licensee of Amateur Radio Station KC0GPV


FRN: 0002373934

Manhattan, Kansas



Adopted: November 21, 2013

Released: November 21, 2013

By the Regional Director, South Central Region, Enforcement Bureau:




In this Forfeiture Order (Order), we issue a monetary forfeiture in the amount of four

thousand dollars ($4,000) to Glen Rubash for willfully and repeatedly violating Section 301 of the

Communications Act of 1934, as amended (Act).1 The noted violations involved Mr. Rubash’s operation of

an unlicensed radio transmitter on the frequency 88.3 MHz in Manhattan, Kansas.




On December 5, 2012, the Enforcement Bureau’s Kansas City Office (Kansas City

Office) issued a Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture (NAL) to Mr. Rubash for operating an unlicensed

radio transmitter in Manhattan, Kansas.2

As reflected in the NAL, on September 26 and 27, 2012, agents

from the Kansas City Office determined that an unlicensed radio station was operating on the frequency

88.3 MHz from a detached garage in Manhattan, Kansas.3

The agents determined that Mr. Rubash secured

space to the garage specifically to house and operate the unlicensed radio station.4

On September 27, 2012,

Mr. Rubash admitted over the telephone that he installed and owned the station’s radio transmitting

equipment and demonstrated control over the station by stating that he would refuse to surrender the

equipment to the agents from the Kansas City Office if required to do so.5


In response to the NAL, Mr. Rubash requests cancellation or reduction of the proposed


While he admits making the admissions via telephone on September 27, 2012, he asserts that his

statements were based on incorrect information. He states he owned and installed a low power FM radio

transmitter, which operated within Part 15 unlicensed limits7 and was only able to reach 300 feet beyond the

1 47 U.S.C. § 301.

2 Glen Rubash, Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, 27 FCC Rcd 15044 (Enf. Bur. 2012) (NAL). A

comprehensive recitation of the facts and history of this case can be found in the NAL and is incorporated herein by


3 Id. at 15044, paras. 2–3.

4 Id. at 15046, para.6.

5 Id. at 15044, para. 3.

6 Letter from Glen Rubash to Kansas City Office, South Central Region, Enforcement Bureau at 1-2 (received Dec.

20, 2012) (NAL Response).

7 See, e.g., 47 C.F.R. § 15.209.


Federal Communications Commission

DA 13-2235

garage housing the station, to teach a small group of college and high school students how to operate a

community radio station.8

He states he attached his transmitter to a home-built antenna supplied by one of

the students.9

He claims no knowledge of the radio transmitter that was in place when the agents inspected

the station on September 27, 2012, because he was absent from the station from late July until September

29, 2012, due to illness.10

He asserts that someone must have replaced the transmitter while he was

recuperating from his illness.11

Accordingly, he asserts he should not be held responsible for unlawful

actions which occurred during his absence.12

Finally, in the alternative, Mr. Rubash asserts that he is unable

to pay the forfeiture and requests a reduction.13




The proposed forfeiture amount in this case was assessed in accordance with Section

503(b) of the Act,14 Section 1.80 of the Commission’s rules (Rules),15 and the Forfeiture Policy


In examining Mr. Rubash’s NAL Response, Section 503(b)(2)(E) of the Act requires that the

Commission take into account 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 other

such matters as justice may require.17


We affirm the NAL’s finding that Mr. Rubash violated Section 301 of the Act.18

Section 301

of the Act states that no person shall use or operate any apparatus for the transmission of energy or

communications or signals by radio within the United States, except under and in accordance with the Act

and with a license granted under the provisions of the Act.19

It is undisputed that Mr. Rubash secured the

garage space for use by the radio station, and owned and operated a radio transmitter on the frequency 88.3

MHz without a license. Mr. Rubash contends, however, that his transmitter was not the transmitter found in

use by agents on September 27, 2012. Assuming he owned and operated the low power FM transmitter as

alleged,20 we would still conclude he violated Section 301 of the Act. Based on the pictures provided by

8 Mr. Rubash provided photographs of his low power FM radio transmitter. See NAL Response at 4-5.

9 Id.

10 Mr. Rubash states that when he went to the station on September 29, 2012, several pieces of equipment had been

removed from the station and there was no transmitter present other than his disconnected low power transmitter. Id

at 2-3. Mr. Rubash, however, provided no corroborating documentation for his statement, such as a police report

detailing the property loss.

11 Id. at 2.

12 Mr. Rubash also states that he was under the influence of pain medication during his telephone conversation on

September 27, 2012. See NAL Response at 2. As discussed in paragraph 5 infra, Mr. Rubash’s written statements in

the NAL Response, made while he was not under the influence of medication, also demonstrate that he violated

Section 301. Therefore, although Mr. Rubash appeared to sound lucid to agents on September 27, 2012, his written

statements in the NAL Response are sufficient to affirm the NAL’s finding that Mr. Rubash violated Section 301 of the


13 Id. at 3.

14 47 U.S.C. § 503(b).

15 47 C.F.R. § 1.80.

16 The Commission’s Forfeiture Policy Statement and Amendment of Section 1.80 of the Rules to Incorporate the

Forfeiture Guidelines, Report and Order, 12 FCC Rcd 17087 (1997), recons. denied, 15 FCC Rcd 303 (1999)

(Forfeiture Policy Statement).

17 47 U.S.C. § 503(b)(2)(E).

18 See NAL supra note 2.

19 47 U.S.C. § 301.

20 We remain skeptical of Mr. Rubash’s story, as he made no mention of students of any kind during the interview

on September 27, 2012.



Federal Communications Commission

DA 13-2235

Mr. Rubash and information gathered by agents from the Kansas City Office, it appears his low power FM

transmitter was not FCC certified. Moreover, the home-built antenna in use at the station was not

authorized to be used with his transmitter. All intentional radiators operating pursuant to Part 15 of the

Rules must be certified for use as a Part 15 device.21

Intentional radiators may only be operated with the

antenna with which they are authorized.22 Operating a Part 15 device in a manner that is inconsistent with

the Part 15 Rules requires a license pursuant to Section 301 of the Act.23

Accordingly, operation of the

non-certified low power FM transmitter with an unauthorized antenna described by Mr. Rubash was

inconsistent with Part 15 and required a license under Section 301 of the Act. A review of the

Commission’s records confirms that no license or authorization was issued to anyone to operate a radio

station on 88.3 MHz from this location. Moreover, the fact that Mr. Rubash may have been absent from the

station for a period of time does not mean that he did not operate or exercise control over the station, as

multiple individuals may operate the same station.24

We have previously held that, because Section 301 of

the Act provides that “no person shall use or operate”25 radio transmission equipment, liability for

unlicensed operation may be assigned to any individual taking part in the operation of the unlicensed station,

regardless of who else may be responsible for the operation.26

Therefore, based on the evidence before us,

we conclude that Mr. Rubash willfully and repeatedly violated Section 301 of the Act by operating radio

transmission equipment without the required Commission authorization.


In the NAL Response, Mr. Rubash also states that he is unable to pay the $15,000 forfeiture.

With regard to an individual or entity’s inability to pay claim, the Commission has determined that gross

revenues are generally the best indicator of an ability to pay a forfeiture.27

Based on the financial

documents provided by Mr. Rubash, we find sufficient basis to reduce the forfeiture to $4,000.28

However, we caution Mr. Rubash that a party’s inability to pay is only one factor in our forfeiture

calculation analysis, and is not dispositive.29

We have previously rejected inability to pay claims in cases

of repeated or otherwise egregious violations.30

Therefore, future violations of this kind may result in

significantly higher forfeitures that may not be reduced due to Mr. Rubash’s financial circumstances.

21 See 47 C.F.R. § 15.201(b).

22 See 47 C.F.R. § 15.204(c).

23 See 47 C.F.R. § 15.1(b).

24 See Durrant Clarke, Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, 26 FCC Rcd 6982 (Enf. Bur. 2011) (finding the

fact that someone else may have been involved in the operation of unlicensed station does not lessen culpability).

25 47 U.S.C. § 301.

26 See, e.g., Durrant Clarke, 26 FCC Rcd at 6984, para. 7; Loyd Morris, Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture,

25 FCC Rcd 13736, 137638–39, para. 8 (Enf. Bur. 2010); Robert Brown, Notice of Apparent Liability for

Forfeiture, 25 FCC Rcd 13740, 13741–42, para. 8 (Enf. Bur. 2010); Jean L. Senatus, Forfeiture Order, 20 FCC Rcd

14418, 14420, para. 11 (Enf. Bur. 2005).

27 See Hoosier Broadcasting Corp., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 15 FCC Rcd 8640 (2000) (forfeiture not

deemed excessive where it represented approximately 7.6 percent of the violator’s gross revenues); Local Long

Distance, Inc., Order of Forfeiture, 15 FCC Rcd 24385 (2000) (forfeiture not deemed excessive where it represented

approximately 7.9 percent of the violator’s gross revenues).

28 This forfeiture amount falls within the percentage range that the Commission has previously found acceptable.

See supra note 27.

29 See 47 U.S.C. § 503(b)(2)(E) (requiring Commission to take into account 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).

30 Kevin W. Bondy, Forfeiture Order, 26 FCC Rcd 7840 (Enf. Bur. 2011) (holding that violator’s repeated acts of

malicious and intentional interference outweighed evidence concerning his ability to pay), aff’d, Memorandum

Opinion and Order, 28 FCC Rcd 1170 (Enf. Bur. 2013); Hodson Broadcasting Corp., Forfeiture Order, 24 FCC Rcd

13699 (Enf. Bur. 2009) (holding that permittee’s continued operation at variance with its construction permit

constituted an intentional and continuous violation, which outweighed permittee’s evidence concerning its ability to

pay the proposed forfeitures).



Federal Communications Commission

DA 13-2235




Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED that, pursuant to Section 503(b) of the Communications

Act of 1934, as amended, and Sections 0.111, 0.204, 0.311, 0.314, and 1.80(f)(4) of the Commission’s

rules, Glen Rubash IS LIABLE FOR A MONETARY FORFEITURE in the amount of four thousand

dollars ($4,000) for violations of Section 301 of the Act.31


Payment of the forfeiture shall be made in the manner provided for in Section 1.80 of the

Rules within thirty (30) calendar days after the release date of this Order.32

If the forfeiture is not paid

within the period specified, the case may be referred to the U.S. Department of Justice for enforcement of

the forfeiture pursuant to Section 504(a) of the Act.33

Glen Rubash shall send electronic notification of

payment to on the date said payment is made. The payment must be made by

check or similar instrument, wire transfer, or credit card, and must include the NAL/Account Number and

FRN referenced above. Regardless of the form of payment, a completed FCC Form 159 (Remittance

Advice) must be submitted.34

When completing the FCC Form 159, enter the Account Number in block

number 23A (call sign/other ID) and enter the letters “FORF” in block number 24A (payment type

code). Below are additional instructions you should follow based on the form of payment you select:


Payment by check or money order must be made payable to the order of the Federal

Communications Commission. Such payments (along with the completed Form 159) must be

mailed to Federal Communications Commission, P.O. Box 979088, St. Louis, MO 63197-

9000, or sent via overnight mail to U.S. Bank – Government Lockbox #979088, SL-MO-C2-

GL, 1005 Convention Plaza, St. Louis, MO 63101.


Payment by wire transfer must be made to ABA Number 021030004, receiving bank

TREAS/NYC, and Account Number 27000001. To complete the wire transfer and ensure

appropriate crediting of the wired funds, a completed Form 159 must be faxed to U.S. Bank

at (314) 418-4232 on the same business day the wire transfer is initiated.


Payment by credit card must be made by providing the required credit card information on

FCC Form 159 and signing and dating the Form 159 to authorize the credit card payment.

The completed Form 159 must then be mailed to Federal Communications Commission, P.O.

Box 979088, St. Louis, MO 63197-9000, or sent via overnight mail to U.S. Bank –

Government Lockbox #979088, SL-MO-C2-GL, 1005 Convention Plaza, St. Louis, MO



Any request for full payment over time under an installment plan should be sent to:

Chief Financial Officer—Financial Operations, Federal Communications Commission, 445 12th Street,

S.W., Room 1-A625, Washington, D.C. 20554.35 If you have questions regarding payment procedures,

please contact the Financial Operations Group Help Desk by phone, 1-877-480-3201, or by e-mail,

31 47 U.S.C. §§ 301, 503(b); 47 C.F.R. §§ 0.111, 0.204, 0.311, 0.314, 1.80(f)(4).

32 47 C.F.R. § 1.80.

33 47 U.S.C. § 504(a).

34 An FCC Form 159 and detailed instructions for completing the form may be obtained at

35 See 47 C.F.R. § 1.1914.



Federal Communications Commission

DA 13-2235


IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that a copy of this Order shall be sent by both First Class

and Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested, to Glen Rubash at his address of record.


Dennis P. Carlton

Regional Director, South Central Region

Enforcement Bureau


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