The Low Power FM Station Self-Inspection Checklist is a document published by the Federal Communications Commission that allows LPFM licensees to perform a self-inspection of their station. These are the things the FCC will be looking for in the event that your staiton is inspected.
Despite the recent news of the downsizing of the Enforcement Bureau and the closing of field offices, that does not mean the end of station inspections. Inspections can happen at any time.
LPFM stations, feel free to use this site as a computer based training for your staff and volunteers.
There is also a 2 page checklist that you can download and print. This version of the checklist includes all of the items included in the FCC LPFM Checklist but in the order used in this training. Perfect for a clipboard. Fill it out and keep it in your station records if you wish. It's not required and you don't have to submit it (or any checklist) to the FCC.
State Broadcaster Association Voluntary Inspections
Another program that REC recommends is the voluntary inspection programs offered as a membership benefit of your state broadcaster’s association. These programs give you a second set of eyes to assure that your station is in compliance. Despite feelings from the past, more state broadcaster’s associations have been accommodating to LPFM stations and have welcomed LPFM stations into their membership. They can be an excellent resource.
LPFM stations should seriously consider a membership in the National Federation of Community Broadcasters. They are a national association that has a membership that includes LPFM and full power NCE community (mainly secular non-NPR) stations. NFCB’s resources include materials to help you operate your station compliant on both the technical and programming side plus you have access to a collective of community radio professionals. LPFM stations that will be making on-air announcements in exchange for underwriting especially should join NFCB. By following the guidance they provide to their stations, you can avoid potential fines and other adverse actions. REC recommends NCFB membership for all community-minded and community-involved LPFM stations.
Self-Inspecting Your Station
LPFM stations are not required by any law or rule to perform this specific self-inspection and there is no need to inform the FCC of the results of this self-inspection. This procedure is for your own piece of mind knowing that your station is in compliance if in the event you someday get a visit.
This version of the Self-Inspection Checklist was re-written by REC Networks to not only be more up-to-date (the FCC Checklist was written in 2008) but to offer more information and links that the FCC can’t provide.
As the licensee/permittee, your organization is the party overall responsible for compliance at the station and any advice that REC or even the FCC gives you in a publication is unofficial and non-binding. Rules and laws are enforced by the FCC based on Title 47 of the Code of Federal Regulations (the FCC Rules) and Title 47 of the United States Code (The Communications Act of 1934 as amended).
REC has divided the FCC LPFM Checklist into five parts.
Let's start with Station Records