Congress Moves to Hike Indecency Fines

WASHINGTON, D.C. U.S. lawmakers have resumed efforts to raise the penalties for violations of broadcast indecency laws, introducing bills similar to measures that failed to clear Congress last year.

Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., late Tuesday introduced a measure that would raise fines from their current maximum of $32,500 per violation to $500,000.

Sen. Sam Brownback, R-Kan., planned to introduce a measure later today that would raise the maximum fine to $325,000 per violation, with a maximum of $3 million per day.

Each chamber passed its own measure to raise fines last year, but the legislation foundered amid differences over media ownership.

“We were close to getting this on the books last year, but we will complete the job this time around, particularly since we are jumping on it right out of the gate,” Upton said.

Neither bill would change decency standards.