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TAB’s Alternative Broadcast Inspection Program Checks Your Station’s FCC Compliance

Station owners and managers wondering whether their stations are in compliance with the FCC’s maze of regulations can put their minds to ease with TAB’s Alternative Broadcast Inspection Program which covers most, but not all, of the regulations pertaining to a station’s studio and transmitter facilities.

TAB covers part of the cost for member stations.

ABIP reviews also include an inspection of a station’s physical facilities, as well as a review of certain station procedures.

Some types of non-compliance show up more frequently such as this list of common deficiencies as encountered by TAB ABIP inspectors over the years.

Typically, it takes about 3-4 hours to review one station, and less time to review others located under the same roof.

Interested in getting a station inspection? 

Download the TAB ABIP contract here. 

Stations can also learn more about what is involved in a station inspection at the above link.

The FCC may still inspect an ABIP reviewed station to review tower safety issues or investigate complaints received.

Additionally, since stations’ public inspection files migrated to the FCC’s website in the past decade, the commission has continuous capability to review materials required not only to be in the file, but also ascertain if they were timely filed.

TAB’s ABIP inspectors are broadcast engineering veterans Wayne Kube and Steve Sandlin, who have some 80 years of broadcasting experience between them.

The intrepid duo has logged thousands of miles thoroughly reviewing Texas stations over the past decade.

When a station review is physically completed, Kube or Sandlin issue a report to station staff detailing the state of the station’s FCC compliance.

Successfully completing a review earns a three-year waiver from routine, surprise FCC inspections of a station’s physical facilities. 

The waiver comes in the form of a Certificate of Compliance which is often posted in the lobby of the station.

While many stations pass the inspection without issue, those stations that have deficiencies related to their physical facilities may correct them within a reasonable period and still garner one of the coveted certificates. 

FCC forfeitures typically start at the $4,000 level and rise steadily from there, so it is far less expensive if TAB finds a problem and it is addressed, than if the FCC finds the problem during a surprise inspection. 

Additionally, stations have used TAB’s inspection reports as justification for capital outlays in discussions with corporate management. 

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

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