“Shenanigans” Lead to Bigger Tower Fine for WGBN

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Because of the public safety risk of a tall tower to aircraft, the FCC escalated a $25,000 fine against Pentecostal Temple Development Corporation to a forfeiture order. Pentecostal Temple is the licensee of WGBN-AM and owns a two-tower array registered under ASR #1026648 (at 206-feet) and #1026650 (just over 200-feet in height) in Lincoln Borough, PA. Both towers were erected in 1947.

The Enforcement Bureau cited Pentecostal in 2016 for failing to properly light the towers and not notifying the FAA the lights were out; it also cited the owner for not cleaning or repainting the structures.

Pentecostal didn’t file a proper response, according to the agency, but rather, “engaged in procedurally deficient shenanigans.” The church asked for reconsideration, then pledged to fix the problems but did not, according to the FCC. The Commission said the church promised to pay the fine in installments, but a payment plan never materialized either.    

“Despite its numerous filings with the Commission [to the wrong departments], Pentecostal Temple failed to submit any response to the notice to the bureau,” stated the Enforcement Bureau, which affirmed the earlier penalty. If payment is not made within 30 days, the FCC may turn the case over to the Justice Department for collection.

July 24, 2019

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