Updated: WBOX Radio Negotiate to Stay On Air Amid FCC Financial Dispute

Published 11:11 am Tuesday, February 20, 2024

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BOGALUSA, La. — WBOX-AM 92 and WBOX-FM 92.9, known for their “Best Country B92” format, will continue broadcasting as they engage in arbitration with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). This update follows a previous announcement regarding the stations’ cessation due to unpaid regulatory fees. Ben Strickland, the owner of Best Country Broadcasting, LLC, which operates the stations, has confirmed their ongoing negotiations.

Strickland, alongside Wes Robertson, expressed concerns over what they describe as disproportionate fees imposed by the FCC, particularly on small market radio stations. They argue that such financial demands have placed undue pressure on local broadcasters, impacting their ability to serve their communities effectively.

The dispute centers around a notice from the FCC, dated October 26, 2023, which outlined accumulated regulatory fees, interest, penalties, and administrative costs. Failure to address these debts within a 60-day window initially led to the stations’ silence in early February 2024. However, recent developments indicate a potential resolution on the horizon.

Strickland said they are working closely with an attorney to reach a fair settlement through arbitration with the FCC. He said their goal is to ensure WBOX’s continued operation and to advocate for more reasonable fee structures for small broadcasters.

About Timothy Holdiness

Timothy Holdiness is a native of Louisiana and has been published in several state, national and international publications. He has earned two undergraduate degrees in Biology, most recently from Northwestern State University in 2022. Notably, Holdiness was the 2014 Microsoft Office Specialist United States Champion in PowerPoint 2010.

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