Telecom Business Alert -- Vol. VIII Issue 43

Date: Oct 24, 2011

LightSquared's Alternatives Include Lower Power and Additional Towers

Last week, LightSquared's executive Vice President submitted written responses to questions posed by the House of Representatives' Committee on Science, Space and Technology. LightSquared's responses offered several compromises designed to permit the company to continue operating while minimizing interference to nearby GPS users, including using only the lowest 10 MHz of the L-band for the next five or six years. To further allay interference concerns, LightSquared also said it would be willing to operate at lower power in the upper portion of the band, add additional towers to provide for more ubiquitous coverage or operate on alternative spectrum. Meanwhile, the GPS industry remains concerned about the interference potential of LightSquared's operations. The FAA's Deputy Associate Administrator for Aviation Safety called LightSquared's interference to GPS systems "the most intractable problem I have been involved with in 31 years in aviation." For more information, please contact Greg Kunkle (202.434.4178; kunkle@khlaw.com).

FCC to Take Action on USF and Intercarrier Reform Proposals at October 27, 2011 Meeting

The featured item for the FCC's Open Meeting of October 27, 2011, is a Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking addressing Universal Service Fund and Intercarrier Compensation reform proposals. The FCC is expected to move forward with major changes to USF, placing more emphasis and funding on broadband investment, and substantially lowering intercarrier compensation rates (both interstate access and reciprocal compensation). Possible outcomes will be highlighted in this week's entry on www.beyondtelecomlaw.com. Please contact Doug Jarrett (202.434.4180; Jarrett@khlaw.com) with questions.

FCC Asked to Investigate T-Mobile's Future if AT&T Deal Falls Through

AT&T, Sprint and other interested parties continue debating the claimed benefits and detriments of the proposed AT&T/T-Mobile merger. Last week, Public Knowledge sent a letter to FCC Wireless Bureau Chief Rick Kaplan urging the Commission to require AT&T and Deutsche Telekom to file documents answering questions about T-Mobile's future in the event the proposed merger between AT&T and T-Mobile deal falls through. Earlier this month, the FCC requested AT&T to provide more documents on whether its acquisition of T-Mobile would produce a net gain in domestic jobs. (Vol VIII, Issue 42). Last week, the Free State Foundation released a paper arguing the Department of Justice and FCC's cases against the merger have significant shortcomings.

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