Rules to Ease Broadband Deployment Set for FCC Vote March 23

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The FCC is considering several wireless items and one incentive auction decision at its next open meeting set for March 23. One item, titled “Cellular Service Reform” would facilitate mobile broadband deployment, including LTE, promote greater spectrum efficiency, and reduce regulatory burdens and costs. Carriers have been telling lawmakers and the FCC much of these reforms would help ease the path to 5G deployment.

The rulemaking would eliminate outdated cell regulations or those that hinder innovation. The actions would continue the transition of the 800 MHz Cellular Service to a geographic licensing framework, increasing licensees’ flexibility to change their systems as needed to respond more quickly – and at less cost – to evolving market conditions and consumer demand, according to the agency. 

For wireline companies, the Commission will consider opening a rulemaking for U.S. providers of international service to eliminate traffic and revenue reports and streamline circuit capacity reports; telephone carriers have sought these moves as well. And finally, the FCC will consider authorizing channel sharing outside the context of the incentive auction so stations with auction-related channel sharing agreements could continue to operate if those deals expire or otherwise terminate. Full-power and Class As could also enter new sharing arrangements outside of the auction, including deals with LPTV and TV translators.

Continuing the chairman’s pilot program, the FCC released the draft of each item to be voted on, along with one-page descriptions. Find those here.

March 6, 2017     

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