FCC Rocks Kansas Operators With $25k Fine For EEO Failings


As the Federal Communications Commission dials in on Equal Employment Opportunity issues for broadcasters, it has confirmed a $25,000 fine first suggested in October against Rocking M Media, LLC and Melia Communications, Inc. and nine Kansas stations.

The FCC’s EEO rules mandate non-discrimination in hiring and require broadcasters to conduct broad recruitment efforts for job openings. In the original Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, the Commission alleges that Rocking M Media and Melia Communications failed to meet multiple aspects of these regulations.

Specific violations include not uploading their annual EEO Public File Reports to their stations’ online public files and websites, failing to adequately recruit for certain job vacancies, and not maintaining proper recruitment records.

Both companies, managed by principals Monte and Doris Miller, attribute these failures to “inadvertence” and “significant disruptions in their operations,” including financial difficulties and management changes. Rocking M, which is undergoing bankruptcy proceedings, is navigating the court-ordered sale of its stations.

Rocking M and Melia, facing a sharp employee decline, reportedly filled vacancies through limited recruitment efforts, including on-air advertisements and internal recommendations, contrary to FCC’s EEO requirements.

The Millers argued there was no point in the FCC to punish them over the allegations due to to the ongoing asset sale. However, the Enforcement Bureau pointed out that Rocking M’s response did not directly challenge the FCC’s findings nor provide legal support against the fine, leading to the affirmation.

Rocking M Media stations named in the notice are:

  1. KXXX-AM, Colby
  2. KRDQ, Colby
  3. KGNO-AM, Dodge City
  4. KZRD, Dodge City
  5. KAHE, Dodge City
  6. KERP, Ingalls

Melia Communications stations named are:

  1. KWGB, Colby
  2. KKCI, Goodland
  3. KLOE-AM, Goodland

The Millers have 30 days from February 23 to make the payment.


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