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Telecom Business Alert -- Vol VII Issue 43

Date: Nov 02, 2010

 

Mid-Term Elections and Telecommunications Policy

Assuming the majority of political prognosticators are correct in projecting that the Republicans will take control of the House of Representatives, FCC Chairman Genachowski may be forced to scale-back parts of his ambitious agenda. Verizon, AT&T and the major cable companies will be emboldened to oppose more vigorously the FCC's efforts to impose net neutrality regulations on their Internet backbone facilities. Narrowbanding migration dates will remain and concerns over intrinsically safe radios will continue to grow. Congressional direction on the 700 MHz D-Block (allocate to Public Safety or auction) remains critical to moving forward. Spectrum challenges for CII companies will remain. The need to reform the Universal Service Fund will not abate.

FCC Enters into Historic Consent Decree with Verizon Wireless

Last week, the FCC's Enforcement Bureau adopted an historic Consent Decree with Verizon Wireless, which terminated an investigation into possible violations of Section 201(b) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, and Section 64.2401 of the Commission's rules. In response to consumer complaints about "mystery" fees that Verizon Wireless charged customers over several years for wireless data services, the company is required to, among other things, pay $25 million payment to the U.S. Treasury- the largest payment in FCC history- and refund at least $52.8 million to approximately 15 million customers.

K&H to Conduct EUCI Webinar on Wireless Spectrum Suitable for Smart Grid Applications on November 4

Keller and Heckman LLP attorneys Greg Kunkle and Wes Wright will conduct an Electronic Utility Consultants, Inc. (EUCI) webinar on FCC Rules for Wireless Smart Grid Applications this Thursday from 12 to 1:30 pm Eastern. The webinar will focus on the status of utility efforts to secure additional spectrum for smart grid applications. Highlights will include the pros and cons of the FCC's rules, licensing procedures that apply to spectrum options, avenues for accessing auctioned spectrum under the FCC's "secondary markets" policies, and transactional aspects of acquiring auctioned spectrum and securing turnkey wireless broadband networks. For more information, please contact Greg Kunkle (202.434.4178; kunkle@khlaw.com) or Wes Wright (202.434.4296; wright@khlaw.com). To register, click here.

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