Watch WPGA-TV? Station off air next week without judge’s intervention

Lowell Register enters the courtroom for a hearing Sept. 15, 2016, hearing.
Lowell Register enters the courtroom for a hearing Sept. 15, 2016, hearing. wmarshall@macon.com

A court-appointed attorney managing Radio Perry and Radio Peach has filed an emergency motion renewing a request that a judge confirm the radio station companies’ sale to Creek Media LLC, saying without a sale, WPGA-TV will stop operating Sept. 30.

Assets of Register Communications and its subsidiaries, Radio Peach and Radio Perry, were placed under the attorney’s management in a receivership in early 2015 after the company reportedly failed to pay about $7.5 million in loans, property taxes and payroll taxes owed to the Internal Revenue Service.

Creek Media LLC, operators of Macon’s The Creek 100.9 radio station, agreed to purchase Radio Perry and Radio Peach, along with other property, in May, but that agreement is pending a judge’s approval before it becomes final.

Register Communications head Lowell Register has argued the receivership is invalid because Green Bull Georgia Partners LLC, a company that purchased the promissory notes for which Register allegedly was in default, both filed for the receivership and consented to it on behalf of Register Communications using a power of attorney.

He maintains a bankruptcy court judge has ruled Register Communications wasn’t in default and Green Bull Georgia Partners acted wrongly. The judge returned Register and his wife to the company’s board in an August order. The company has a pending bankruptcy court case.

Green Bull Georgia Partners, which jointly filed the emergency motion about the sale to Creek Media, previously had been providing funding to help WPGA stay afloat despite “ongoing shortfalls” but has discontinued that funding because of Register’s interference in the companies’ affairs, according to the motion.

A judge ruled last week that Register cannot interfere with the companies while they remain in receivership. He’d admitted to intercepting checks and refusing to deposit them into the companies’ coffers. Register returned the checks last week.

According to the emergency motion, filed late Wednesday, the receiver called Register’s lawyer and asked that Register “cover the shortfall” or consent to the sale to Creek Media. Court records show Creek Media agreed to pay $790,000 for Radio Peach, Radio Perry and other property. They’ve been operating The Creek 100.9 under a local management agreement pending a judge approving the sale.

Green Bull Georgia Partners has agreed to continue funding the shortfalls if the sale to Creek Media is confirmed by a judge, according to the motion.

Register’s attorney has filed a motion asking a Bibb County Superior Court judge to end the receivership. A hearing hasn’t been scheduled on the issue or for the emergency motion filed by the receiver.

Information from Telegraph archives was used in this report.

Amy Leigh Womack: 478-744-4398, @awomackmacon