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Fines Issued for AM Tower Violations

Stations are in Mississippi and Puerto Rico

All those articles in Radio World about the importance of proper tower site operations and maintenance? They’re not just idle tips.

Consider that the FCC issued two notable AM tower fines this week.

Jason Konarz, licensee of station WQMA(AM), in Marks, Miss., was fined $14,000 for not enclosing the base of the tower with a locked fence. Initially announced in November, the fine was confirmed as a forfeiture order because Konarz didn’t respond to the initial notice, the commission said in its latest decision. The license for this station was cancelled in 2004; however Konarz had received special temporary authority to operate in June 2006. Thus in the FCC announcement the station appears as DWQMA.

Another decision that escalated to a forfeiture order involves Perry Broadcasting Systems, owner of two towers in Lajas, Puerto Rico. The agency said towers 1063859 and 1063860 lack red obstruction lighting. Perry also failed to tell the commission immediately that the towers have changed hands, according to the commission, which fined Perry $13,000.