FCC Issues Small Fines To Two TV Stations Over Lax Recordkeeping

Jan 12, 2024

By Ted Hearn, Editor of Policyband

Washington, D.C., Jan.12, 2024 – The Federal Communications Commission just sent a message to America’s TV station owners: Take recordkeeping seriously.

The FCC's Media Bureau is proposing to fine a Nexstar Media Group station in Texas $6,000 and a Paramount Global-owned independent station in San Francisco $3,000 over lax recordkeeping discovered by agency staff in reviewing the stations’ license renewal applications submitted in 2022.

The rule violated requires TV stations to include in their Online Public Inspection File (OPIF), “an issues/programs list that details programs that have provided the station’s most significant treatment of community issues during the preceding three month period and must include a brief narrative of the issues addressed, as well as the time, date, duration, and title of each program in which the issues were treated.”

The OPIF needs to be updated quarterly.

The FCC said Nexstar station KAMR in Amarillo failed to upload the programming lists for nine quarters.

“Specifically, it uploaded five lists more than one year late, two lists between one month and one year late, and two lists between one day and one month late,” the FCC said.

The FCC said with regard to the renewal of licensee KPYX in San Francisco, the station “uploaded one issues/programs list over six months late and five issues/programs lists over one year late.”

In the end, the FCC found the recordkeeping failures not to be a “serious violation” of the rules and will grant the stations’ license renewals upon the conclusion of the forfeiture proceedings.