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FCC Allows Pre-Auction Payment KRCA Transfer

The FCC will allow LBI Media to transfer control of the license of KRCA Riverside, Calif., which submitted a winning bid in the FCC's incentive auction, even though the commission said it would not allow transfers until the treasury had forked over auction payments, which has not happened yet.

LBI had sought the waiver of that prohibition, saying it was a time-sensitive deal tied to the maturity of certain notes and a bond offering. 

It told the FCC that it was essentially a pro forma transaction, inserting an intermediary company that would not benefit from the auction payment and that the bank account info it had submitted for the action payment would not change, nor would that intermediary be due any of the money.

The FCC said that given the time sensitivity and that the name of the winning bidder and bank account information would not change, it was making an exception but said it was only given these "specific facts and special circumstances."

KRCA won $142,337,137 in the auction but signaled they had struck a channel-sharing agreement to stay on the air.

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.