Class A Told to ‘Show Cause’ or be Demoted to LPTV Status

WASHINGTON—A Southern California Class A TV station’s been told to show cause why it should retain its status or be busted down to LPTV status. The Federal Communications Commission issued the Order today to KVER-CA in Indo, Calif., a Class A licensed to Entravision of Santa Monica, Calif.

“Except for nominal periods of time, KVER-CA has been off the air since 2010,” the Order said.

Stations must abide by a number of requirements to retain the Class A status, which gives them interference protection as a primary spectrum user. They must broadcast a minimum of 18 hours a day; an average of at least three hours per week of locally produced programming and be in compliance with LPTV rules among other things. Class A stations also will be allowed to participate in the FCC’s Spectrum Incentive Auction.

Commission records indicated that KVER-CA was silent from Oct. 19, 2010 to Aug. 23, 2011; from Sept. 2, 2011 to Aug. 15, 2012; from Aug. 27, 2012 to June 28, 2013; and from July 2, 2013 to June 23, 2014, when the station went up on its digital companion, KVER-LD, rather than its Class A facility.

Entravision has presented a variety of reasons for the long service interruptions. In 2010, it said KVER-CA was powered down to do transmission system repairs. Subsequently, Entravision said it was dark “in order to prepare for the commencement of operations in the digital mode, on the digital companion channel authorized to the station’s licensee,” the Order said.

The commission responded that Entravision should have been operating under a Special Temporary Authority, which would have protected its Class A status. Entravision failed to do so, the FCC said, therefore it is being ordered to show cause why its Class A authorization shouldn’t be modified to low-power TV status.