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Check Your Station’s FCC Compliance with a TAB Alternative Broadcast Inspection Program Review

Texas radio stations must submit their FCC license renewals by April 1 of this year. Many are starting to prep now by signing up for TAB’s Feb. 9 FCC license renewal webinar with TAB’s FCC counsel, Scott and Lauren Lynch Flick of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman. That’s just one way TAB can help stations prepare.

Radio stations can also assess their FCC compliance and identify potential trouble areas to address in advance of their renewals by participating in TAB’s Alternative Broadcast Inspection Program (ABIP).

Now is also a good time for Texas TV stations to get an ABIP review if they do not have a valid certificate of compliance. Texas TV station license renewals will be due by April 1, 2022.

TAB’s ABIP team of inspectors, a mix of broadcast engineering veterans, review stations for FCC compliance using the FCC’s station self-inspection checklists as a guide. 

Despite the health concerns brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, TAB’s ABIP team is out inspecting stations by following the CDC’s accepted COVID-19 health safety protocols.

Stations that successfully complete a review earn a three-year waiver from routine or surprise FCC inspection by going through a TAB mock FCC-style inspection. 

The reviews include a review of the physical facilities of the main studios and transmitter site, as well as a review of station procedures.

Of key interest is a review of the station’s online Public Inspection File which is a key part of the upcoming FCC license renewal.

Since 1997, TAB’s team of inspectors has logged thousands of miles and reviewed hundreds of stations with each review generating an inspection report documenting the station’s FCC compliance and the results of the TAB inspector’s review. 

Stations found in compliance receive the three-year waiver in the form of a Certificate of Compliance which is typically posted in the lobby of the station.

While many stations pass the inspection with flying colors, stations that have deficiencies may correct them within a reasonable timeframe and still garner one of the coveted certificates. 

It is TAB’s goal, in partnership with the FCC, to promote and ensure station compliance with the FCC’s regulations. 

Stations that have undergone an ABIP review very quickly realize the value of getting a third-party to search for any FCC regulatory deficiencies. 

Why?  It is less expensive if the TAB finds a problem and it is addressed, than if the FCC found the problem during a routine, surprise inspection. 

FCC forfeitures typically start at the $4,000 level and rise steadily from there.

Interested in getting a station inspection?

Learn more about what is involved in TAB’s ABIP station review and download an ABIP contract here

Questions? Contact TAB’s Michael Schneider or call (512) 322-9944.

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