FCC Enforcement Monitor

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP communications lawyers have published FCC Enforcement Monitor monthly since 1999 to inform their clients of notable FCC enforcement actions against FCC license holders and others.

Pillsbury provides legal services to the National Association of State Broadcast Associations (NASBA) and this information is provided as a service to the members of the Michigan Association of Broadcasters.

Click on any date listed below to see all content in each issue.

10/17/19Virginia FM Station’s Years of Missing Quarterly Lists Lead to Proposed $15,000 Fine and a Reduced License Term
FCC Investigates Ohio College Station Over Unauthorized Silence and Scheduling Violation
New York Amateur Radio Operator’s Threats and Harmful Interference Lead to Proposed $17,000 Fine
9/30/19Faith-Based Station Settles With FCC After Preempting KidVid Programming With Fundraising
Arizona LPFM Gets License Reinstated in Consent Decree
Christmas Tree’s Harmful Interference Results in Consent Decree With LED Company
8/29/19Big-4 Network, Among Others, Settles With FCC Over Emergency Alert Tone Violations
Despite Self-Disclosure, Sponsorship ID Violations Land $233,000 Proposed Fine
Topeka TV Licensee Enters Into Consent Decree Over Late-Filed KidVid Reports
7/31/19Pennsylvania AM Station’s “Shenanigans” in Connection With Tower Violations Lead to $25,000 Fine
Georgia and North Carolina Radio Station Licenses at Risk Due to Unpaid Fees
FCC Cites New Jersey Vehicle Equipment Vendor for Programming Transmitters with Unauthorized Frequencies
6/27/19Investigation Into Undisclosed Radio Station Owner With a History of Felonies Leads to Hearing Designation Order
FCC Settles With Alaskan Broadcaster After Disastrous Station Inspection
FCC Reinstates Licenses for Tennessee and Alabama Radio Stations, Then Immediately Threatens to Revoke Them
5/30/19FCC Settles With Golf Club Operator Over Unauthorized Transfer of 108 Private Wireless Licenses
FCC Warns Traffic Management Company Over Unlicensed Radio Operations
Months-Long Tower Lighting Outage Leads to Warning
4/25/19FCC Revokes License for Unpaid Regulatory Fees; Warns Other Stations of Similar Fate
Texas Station Warned Over Multiple Tower and Transmission Violations
FCC Nabs Massachusetts Pirate While Commission Continues to Push for Anti-Piracy Legislation
3/28/19Oregon LPFM Station Warned Over Emergency Alert System Violations
Pennsylvania Man Accused of Interfering With Local Fire Department Operations
Earth Station Transmission Problems Lead to Warning Against Florida Wireless Licensee
2/28/19FCC Fines Kentucky Men $144,344 for Illegally Operating LPTV Station for 18 Years
North Carolina Radio Station Settles With FCC Over Decades of Unauthorized Transfers
Connecticut Radio Station Warned for Inspection and Antenna Violations
1/31/19Alabama FM Licensee Admits to On-Air Contest and Unauthorized Transfer of Control Violations
Silicon Valley Start-Up Agrees to Pay $900,000 Penalty for Unauthorized Satellite Launches
Michigan AM Licensee Faces Proposed $18,000 Fine and Reduced License Term for a Variety of Violations
12/19/18Unpaid Regulatory Fees Bring License Revocation Proceeding for Massachusetts FM Station
Unregistered Tower and Unauthorized Silence Spell Trouble for North Carolina AM Station
FCC Issues Warning to Denver Trucking Company for Unauthorized Transmissions on Public Safety Frequency
11/29/18Premature Construction Turns Texas LPFM’s Minor Change into a Major Fine
FCC Issues Notice of Violation to Miami LPFM Licensee for Unauthorized Antenna Location
California Man Pleads Guilty to FCC Bomb Threat, Fatal “Swatting” Hoax
10/31/18Ownership Questions Lead to Hearing Designation Order for LPFM Licensee
NC Man Hit with $40,000 Fine for Unauthorized Transmissions Over Public Safety Radio
FCC Issues Notice to Hospital Paging System Licensee for Harmful Interference
9/28/18FCC Cracks Down on Call Spoofing Operations with Multimillion-Dollar Fine
New Jersey Utility Company Investigated for Improper Use of Private Land Mobile Radio
FCC Issues Repeated Notices to Florida LPFM Licensee Over Transmitter Issues
8/30/18International Hotel Company Agrees to $504,000 Settlement for Overlooked Wireless License Transfers
Media Bureau Fines AM Licensee for Years-Old Unauthorized Transfers
Suburban Elementary School Busted as Pirate Radio Operator
7/30/18Alaskan Licensee Faces Fines Over FM Station Silences
Enforcement Bureau Issues Consent Decrees for LED Billboard Violations
Tower Owner Hit for Unlit Structure
6/25/18Media Bureau Hits Michigan Radio Station for Low Power Snafu
Online Retailer Faces $2,861,128 Forfeiture for Selling Unauthorized Drone Parts
Enforcement Bureau Issues Advisory on Drone Accessories
5/30/18Louisiana Class A TV Station Settles Online Public File Violations for $50,000 Ahead of License Renewal
FCC and Michigan Teenager Enter Into Consent Decree After Misuse of Public Safety Communications System
Missouri Telco Agrees to $16,000 Settlement Over Unauthorized Transfers
4/30/18FCC Proposes $235,668 Fine for Filing Untruthful Information
Major Phone Carrier Settles Dispute With FCC Over Rural Call Completion Issues for $40 Million
Repeat Pirate Nets $25,000 Fine
3/29/18This month’s special issue takes a look at the government’s renewed efforts to scuttle Pirate Radio operations.
2/28/18FCC Proposes Forfeitures Against South Carolina Stations for Failure to Maintain Public Inspection File
Noncommercial Station and FCC Settle Dispute Over Promotional Announcements
Brooklyn-based Bitcoin Miner Warned Over Harmful Interference
FCC Issues Notice to Security Camera Manufacturer for Device ID Violations
1/30/18FCC Revokes Licenses After Alleged Failure to Report Felony Drug Conviction
Car Dealership Receives Citation for Interference-Creating Outdoor Lighting
License Renewal Hearing Ordered for Near-Silent Virginia Stations
FCC Commissioner Criticizes Local Colorado News Site Over Pirate Radio Station Article
12/28/17FCC Proposes $20,000 Fine for Decade-Old EEO Violations
FCC Goes After Small North Carolina Radio Station for Absence During Inspection
Drone Company Agrees to $180,000 Settlement for Non-Compliant A/V Equipment
11/30/17FCC Fires Broadside at Pirate Stronghold: Nearly Half of November Pirate Radio Notices Go to NY/NJ/CT Area
Sorry About That: Wireless Broadband Manufacturer Pays $95,000 to End Investigation of Failure to Prevent Harmful Manipulation of Its Products
Not Too Bright: FCC Proposes $25,000 Fine for Marketing Unlabeled Fluorescent Lights
10/31/17Law and Disorder: FCC Fines New York City Man $404,166 for Interfering with NYPD Radio Frequencies
A Friendly Port: In Novel FCC Action, Property Owners Face a $144,344 Fine for Housing a Pirate’s Radio Operation
Continuous Unidentified Transmissions on a Shared Channel Leads
to a $25,000 Fine
9/29/17Noncommercial TV Broadcaster Agrees to $5,000 Consent Decree
for EEO Violations
Taxi Company Fined $13,000 for Failing to Operate a Private Land Mobile Radio Station on a Narrowband Basis and Other Violations
FCC Issues Notices of Unlicensed FM Station Operation to Five Individuals
8/31/17TV Station Agrees to $17,500 Consent Decree for Failure to Properly Identify Children’s Programming and Other Violations
FCC Proposes $22,000 Fine Against Store for Operating Cell Phone Jammer
Marketing of Unauthorized Radio Frequency Devices Leads
to $30,000 Civil Penalty
7/27/17FCC Proposes $66,000 Fine Against Alaska Noncommercial FM Station for EAS and Other Violations
Man Faces $120 Million Fine for “Massive” Robocall Operation
FCC Proposes $1,500 Fine Against South Carolina AM Station for Late-Filed License Renewal
6/30/17TV Broadcaster Agrees to $55,000 “Civil Penalty” for Airing False EAS Tones
Radio Broadcaster to Donate or Surrender Nine FM Stations to Resolve Investigation of Stations Being Silent for Extended Periods
FCC Proposes $6,000 Fine Against California TV Station for Public File
and Related Violations
5/24/17Former Broadcast Licensee Faces $144,344 Fine for Operating Kentucky LPTV Station Without a License for 18 Years
FCC Proposes $20,000 Fine Against California Noncommercial TV Station for Public File and Related Violations
FCC Agrees to Reduce Fines for Untimely Children’s Television Programming Reports Based on Inability to Pay
4/27/17Michigan Class A TV Station Agrees to Pay $45,000 for Numerous Children’s Programming and Public Inspection File Violations
New York TV Station Agrees to $10,000 Consent Decree to End FCC Investigation into Indecency Allegations
California Radio Licensee Agrees to $8,000 Consent Decree for Unauthorized Transfer of Control
3/30/17Failing to Make Timely Uploads to Online Public File Costs TV Station $13,500
FCC Fines Church’s Pirate Radio Station $25,000
FCC Proposes $7,000 Fine Against TV Station for Public File Violations
2/23/17FCC Proposes $25,000 Fine Against Individual for Operating a Pirate Radio Station
FCC Admonishes Wireless Carrier for Data Breach
Telecommunications Relay Service Providers Agree to $9.1 Million Settlement
1/31/17FCC Proposes $10,000 Fine to FM Licensee for Public Inspection File Violations
Spoofed Calls Lead to $25,000 Fine
Wireless Licensee Agrees to Pay $28,800 Settlement for Operating on Unauthorized Frequencies
12/30/16Broadcaster Loses Appeal of $20,000 FCC Fine
FCC Issues Citation for Violations of Radio Frequency Equipment Authorization and Labeling Rules
FCC Proposes $392,930 Fine to Telecom Provider for Excessive USF Fees, Unauthorized Transfers, and Delinquent Regulatory Fees
11/30/16Broadcaster Agrees to Pay $100,000 Fine for Filing Applications
Under False Names
FCC Proposes $13,000 Fine for Late License Renewal Application
and Unauthorized Operation
Failure to Register with the FCC Results in $100,000 Fine for Telecom Provider
10/31/16FCC Revokes Company’s Authorizations for Failure to Pay Regulatory Fees
Failure to Disclose Felonies in License Applications Yields $175,000 Fine
Cable Operator Settles Investigation into Unlawful Billing for $2.3 Million
1/30/15Individual fined $25,000 for Unauthorized “Chanting and Heavy Breathing” on Public Safety Station
Failure to Timely Request STA Results in $5,000 Fine
FCC Imposes $11,500 Fine for Intentional Interference and Station ID Violation
9/28/16Florida AM Licensee Hit with $15,000 Fine for Failing to Maintain Public Inspection File and Provide Immediate Access to It
New York Amateur Radio Operator Fined $23,000 and Arrested for Unlicensed Operations and False Officer-in-Distress Call
Late-Filed License Renewal Nets Washington AM Station $1,500 Fine
8/23/16Spoofed Calls Lead to Multiple $25,000 Fines and Ongoing Criminal Case
Amateur Radio Licensee Fined $25,000 for Intentional Interference
Failure to Timely Request STA Results in $5,000 Fine and Shortened License Term
7/29/16FCC Cancels $3,000 Proposed Fine After Discovering TV Licensee Overwrote Children’s Programming Reports
Educational FM Licensee Agrees to Pay Reduced Fine of $2,250
for Multiple Violations
Failure to Understand FCC’s Filing System Nets $1,500 Fine
6/30/16FCC Refuses TV Licensee’s Request to Defer $15,000 Fine Until
After Incentive Auction
FCC Proposes $20,000 Fine for Radio Licensee’s Violation of
Multiple Ownership Rule
FCC Imposes $12,000 Fine and Short-Term License Renewal for Failure to Maintain Public Inspection File and File Ownership Reports
5/31/16FCC Enforcement Bureau and Long-Distance Provider Agree to $100,000 Settlement for Violations of FCC’s Rural Call Completion Rules
FCC Cancels $3,000 Fine Against TV Licensee for Untimely Kidvid Filings, Upholds $10,000 Fine for Missing Issues/Programs Lists
FM Construction Permit Auction Winner Fined $3,000 For Late Application
4/30/16Class A TV Licensee Hit With $89,200 Fine for Dodging FCC Inspectors
Student-Run FM Station Faces $12,000 Fine and Shortened License Term for Public Inspection File Violations
Wireless Synchronized Clock Company Agrees to Pay $12,000 for Violating License Terms
3/31/16Noncommercial FM Broadcaster Fined $10,000 for
Public Inspection File Violations
TV Licensee Faces $20,000 Fine for Untimely Filing of
16 Children’s TV Programming Reports
Man Agrees to $2,360 Fine for Using GPS Jamming Device at Newark Airport
2/26/16FCC Fines Radio Licensee $10,500 Despite Claims of Public File Sabotage
Unlocked Gate Costs AM Licensee $7,000
Class A Licensee Faces Hobson’s Choice: Pay $12,000 Fine or Revert
to Low Power Status
1/31/16TV Licensee Agrees to Pay $18,000 for Public Inspection File Violations
FM Translator Licensee Faces $9,000 Fine for False Certification and Unauthorized Operation Violations
AM Station Licensee Pays $10,000 to End Investigation into Alleged Ownership Violations
12/30/15FM Licensee and Prospective Buyer Agree to Jointly Pay $8,000 for Unauthorized Transfer of Control
TV Licensee Faces $13,000 Fine for Children’s Programming and Public Inspection File Violations
Late License Renewal Applicant Escapes With $1,500 Fine
11/30/15FCC Admonishes TV Licensee for Prior Station Owner’s Failure to Timely File Children’s Television Programming Reports
Inadequate Antenna Fencing and Signage Result in Proposed Fines of $60,000 and $25,000 for Two Broadband-PCS Licensees
Cable Company Settles Data Breach Investigation for $595,000
10/29/15Time Brokerage Agreement Costs Station and Broker/Buyer $10,000
Telecom Provider Agrees to Pay $620,500 to Resolve Investigation of Cell Tower Registration and Lighting Violations
FCC Admonishes TV Station Licensee for Failing to Upload Past Issues/Programs Lists to Online Public Inspection File
9/30/15FCC Admonishes TV Station Licensees for Violating Commercial Limits in Children’s Programming
Telecommunications Provider Agrees to $1.175 Million Payment to Resolve Investigation of 911 Call Failures
Pirate Radio Operator’s Repeated Disregard for the Rules Results in $15,000 Proposed Fine
8/31/15FCC Again Cracks Down on Wi-Fi Blocking at Conference Centers
Licensee Faces $27,000 Fine for Repeatedly Failing to File Kidvid Reports
Too Little Too Late: FCC Dismisses as Late (and Meritless) Antenna Structure Owner’s Petition for Reconsideration
7/30/15Repetitive Children’s Programming Costs TV Licensee $90,000
It’s Nice to Be Asked: FCC Faults Red-Lighted Licensee’s Failure to Request STA
FCC Proposes $25,000 Fine for Hogging Shared Frequencies
6/30/15Educational FM Licensee Receives $8,000 Fine for Unauthorized Operation
FCC Cancels $6,000 Fine for Late Filings due to Licensee’s Inability to Pay
Blaming Prior Legal Counsel, Telecommunications Provider Pays $2,000,000 Civil Penalty
5/27/15404 Not Found: Missing Online Public File Documents Lead to $9,000 Fine
Wireless Providers Pay $158 Million to Settle Mobile Cramming Violations
Failure to Timely File License Renewal Application Results in $1,500 Fine
3/31/15eceptive Practices Yield Multi-Million Dollar Fines for Telephone Interexchange Carriers
LPFM Ads Cost $16,000
Multiple TV Station Licensees Face $6,000 Fines for Failing to File Children’s TV Programming Reports
4/29/15FCC Scuttles New York Pirate Radio Operator and Proposes $20,000 Fine
Failure to Properly Identify Children’s Programming Results in $3,000 Fine
Telecommunications Carrier Consents to Pay $16 Million To Resolve 911 Outage Investigation
2/25/15FCC Issues $3.36 Million Fine to Company and Its CEO for Selling Toll Free Numbers
Antenna Fencing and Public Inspection File Violations Result in $17,000 Fine
FCC Reiterates That “Willful Violation” Does Not Require “Intent to Violate the Law”