Telecom Alert: 988 Outage Reporting Pleading Cycle; Reconnect Funding; Space Bureau Launches Tuesday; 900 MHz Applications Granted [Vol. XX, Issue 15]
988 Outage Reporting Pleading Cycle
Last week, the FCC’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking proposing to implement reporting and notice requirements for service outages potentially affecting the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline (“988 Lifeline”) was published in the Federal Register (Vol. XX, Issue 5). The Commission proposes requiring, among other things, service providers to report outages to the FCC, HHS’s Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration (“SAMHSA”), the Department of Veteran Affairs, and the 988 Lifeline administrator. Comments and reply comments are due by May 8, 2023, and June 6, 2023, respectively. For more information, please contact Wes Wright (firstname.lastname@example.org; 202.434.4239).
$40 Million in Reconnect Funding
Last week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (“USDA”) announced that it is making available $40 million in round four funding under its ReConnect Program (Vol. XX, Issue 8). The Program administers loans and grants to broadband service providers to construct, improve, or acquire facilities needed to provide broadband service to rural areas without connectivity. This funding commitment will go to people living and working in rural areas in New Mexico. The grants will go to The Western New Mexico Telephone Company Inc. ($23.8 million), E.N.M.R. Telephone Cooperative ($2.6 million), and the Penasco Valley Telephone Cooperative ($13.9 million). For more information, please contact Sean Stokes (email@example.com; 202.434.4344).
Space Bureau Launches Tuesday
The FCC announced that it will officially launch its new Space Bureau and Office of International Affairs with a public event at its Washington D.C. headquarters on April 11 (Vol. XX, Issue 3). The Space Bureau will conduct rulemakings and authorize satellite and earth station systems for space-based services, while the Office of International Affairs will be responsible for the Commission’s policies regarding international telecommunications facilities and services as well as submarine cables. The kickoff event will take place at 3:00 p.m. EST and be live-streamed on the Commission’s website. For more information, please contact Wes Wright (firstname.lastname@example.org; 202.434.4239).
900 MHz Applications Granted
The Wireless Telecommunications Bureau issued a Public Notice last week granting one 900 MHz broadband segment license application (Vol. XX, Issue 12). The FCC realigned the 900 MHz band in May 2020 to make available six megahertz of low-band spectrum for the development of critical wireless broadband technologies and services, while reserving four megahertz of spectrum for continued narrowband operations. The application is from PDV Spectrum Holding Company, LLC for Chester County, PA. For more information, please contact Greg Kunkle (email@example.com; 202.434.4178).
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