Telecom Alert: Anna Gomez Confirmed as Commissioner; 6 GHz AFC Testing Begins; EAS Test Reminder; Middle-Mile Grants [Vol. XX, Issue 37]
Senate Confirms Anna Gomez as FCC Commissioner
Last week, the Senate confirmed Anna Gomez to the FCC by a vote of 55-43 (Vol. XX, Issue 22). The confirmation of Gomez breaks the deadlock at the agency that has lasted all of Biden’s presidency and gives Democrats a 3-2 majority. Ms. Gomez has held various roles in private practice and previously served in the National Telecommunications and Information Administration and the FCC. For more information, please contact Wes Wright (firstname.lastname@example.org; 202.434.4239).
6 GHz AFC System Testing Begins
The FCC issued a Public Notice on August 24 announcing the commencement of testing for the automated frequency coordination (“AFC”) systems that will manage unlicensed access to the 6 GHz band. AFC operators are beginning the lab testing and public trials to gain final approval from the Commission. During the public trial periods (which began last week for several operators), systems will be available to the public for testing and allow individuals to enter location information to determine frequencies that a standard-power device can operate on from those sites. AFC operators are required to file a notice with the Commission at least one week prior to opening up their systems for public trial and make their systems accessible for at least forty-five days. For more information, please contact Greg Kunkle (email@example.com; 202.434.4178) or Tim Doughty (firstname.lastname@example.org; 202.434.4271).
Emergency Alert Test Reminder
The FCC’s Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau issued a Public Notice last week reminding Emergency Alert System (“EAS”) participants, wireless carriers, and the public that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (“FEMA”) will conduct a nationwide test of the EAS and Wireless Emergency Alerts (“WEA”) on October 4 (Vol. XX, Issue 32). The WEA test will begin at 2:18 p.m. EST using the National Alert classification of the Alert Message and the EAS test will begin at 2:20 p.m. EST using the Integrated Public Alert and Warning System. If needed, the back-up date for the tests will be October 11. For more information, please contact Wes Wright (email@example.com; 202.434.4239).
$50 Million in Middle Mile Grants
Last week, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (“NTIA”) announced the award of nearly $50 million in support for middle-mile fiber broadband projects through the Enabling Middle Mile Broadband Infrastructure Program (the “Program”). The projects will deploy 518.5 miles of new fiber across New Hampshire, Tennessee, Virginia, and Wyoming. The awardees will invest an additional $23 million of outside match funding and use future-proof fiber as the primary technology. For more information, please contact Jim Baller (firstname.lastname@example.org; 202.434.4175) or Sean Stokes (email@example.com; 202.434.4344).
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