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FCC Admonishes Roser Group for EEO Violation

UTICA-ROME – The FCC has “admonished” — but it will not formally punish — the Roser Communications Network for failure to meet Equal Employment Opportunity filing requirements between 2003 and 2005.

The official letter of admonishment (PDF), dated March 6, 2008, says the case started with a random request to audit the EEO files for Bug Country stations WBGK(FM) and WBUG-FM, along with Amsterdam station WVTL(AM).

The FCC found that the group did not participate in two or more “recruitment initiatives” during each two-year period (as required for groups of this size).  

Roser told the FCC it had intended to promote upper-level job openings “in a job bank or newsletter of a media trade group whose membership includes substantial participation of women and minorities” and it was planning to train “management level personnel as to methods of ensuring equal employment opportunity and preventing discrimination.”

The station explained it had no upper-level job openings from March 2003 through the end of the audit period, and there was no documentation of any management EEO training.  The FCC only recognized Roser’s participation in one job fair during the 2-year period.  The FCC says Roser “willfully and repeatedly” violated the rules by not fulfilling the originally-stated goals or any of the other 16 options to satisfy EEO requirements.

The FCC says such violations would normally result in a monetary fine.  However, the statute of limitations had expired, leaving the FCC with no option but to admonish the company — basically, the legal version of a slap on the wrist, and a warning not to let it happen again.  To ensure there are no further violations, the FCC is requiring Roser to submit copies of certain EEO documents once a year for three years.

Editorial Note: This story was actually written December 3, 2008.  It is filed under March 6, because that is the date of the FCC letter.  We were not aware of this at the time it happened; we found the letter by chance while researching an unrelated matter, and we file this report for historical/archival purposes.

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