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NIPR Fined $10,000

Licensee points out missing issues/program lists from public file for WBNI(FM) on license renewal application

Northeast Indiana Public Radio’s failure to retain different elements of its public inspection file caught the FCC’s attention.

As part of its license renewal application for noncommercial WBNI(FM), Roanoke, Ind., Northeast Indiana Public Radio admitted that issues/program lists for the fourth quarter of 2009 through 2011 were missing from its public file. The lapses occurred during a period of “substantial management turnover,” combined with the ongoing responsibilities of the station’s limited professional staff, the licensee told the FCC.

Northeast Indiana Public Radio says it has been working to re-create the lists and develop an oversight system for its public file.

In its decision, the FCC said the licensee is still responsible for the “negligent acts” of station employees and the agency proposed a $10,000 fine, describing the violations as “extensive.” NIPR has 30 days to appeal or pay the fine.

The FCC said it has not seen a pattern of abuse from NIPR and intends to approve its license renewal once this forfeiture proceeding is complete.